Summer Safety Tips: How to Prepare for the Summertime Heat Wave

As the summer months heat up, it is important to prioritize safety. Awareness of possible hazards and taking necessary precautions can help ensure a summer filled with both fun and safe experience for everyone.

Bellevue College is fortunate to be surrounded by numerous beautiful beaches, lakes and rivers. However, when enjoying the many opportunities for swimming and boating that the warm weather offers, prioritizing water safety is crucial to avoid potential risks. Only swimming in lifeguarded areas is a critical safety tip to prevent drowning. Swimming in groups and pairing up is also wise, as is utilizing a “buddy system” for added safety. Taking advantage of local swimming lessons is highly recommended for those less confident in their swimming abilities.

Two more popular summer activities in Washington are hiking and camping. However, understanding and evaluating the inherent dangers involved in these activities is vital to understanding the best ways to have fun safely. A well-stocked first aid kit is the first line of defense in handling insect stings, sprains, cuts and bruises and other injuries. It’s also the number one hiking safety tip provided by the American Red Cross. Sharing travel plans and locations for camping and hiking trips with a family member, friend, or partner can be lifesaving if a potential injury or other unforeseen circumstance prevents a safe return home. Bringing plenty of nutritious food and water to sustain and hydrate hikers and campers during peak daytime temperatures can help prevent heat exhaustion or dehydration. Additionally, while enjoying the great outdoors, it is necessary to be mindful of wildlife and potential encounters with bears, cougars, or other wild animals.

The summer heat can also be dangerous for pets. These tips can help ensure all beloved pets’ health during the hot summer months. Never leave an animal in a hot vehicle, even for a few minutes. With a window cracked open, the inside temperature of a car can still quickly reach 120 degrees. Just like humans, animals can also suffer from heat stroke. It is especially important to be cautious with breeds of dogs with short noses, like boxers or bulldogs, as they are more prone to this. So are overweight pets, those with thick fur coats, or any with respiratory problems. If an animal shows signs of heat stroke, bringing them to a veterinarian as soon as possible is essential.

Everyone can have a safe and enjoyable summer with a little extra understanding and preparation.

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