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For Release: June 16, 2009
Enjoy Summer – Safely!
Summer has arrived! Summer is a great opportunity to spend time with family and friends outdoors, and to enjoy outside activities. It is also important to keep safety precautions in mind while enjoying the warm weather, especially for children. Nearly half of all unintentional injury-related deaths among children occur during the summer months of May through August. The Oklahoma State Department of Health Injury Prevention Service, Safe Kids USA, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, join together to promote the following safety tips to keep Oklahoma children and families safe and healthy this summer.
Swim and Boat Safely
• Children should only swim in designated and well-supervised swimming areas. It is important to remember that there is no substitute for active adult supervision when children are in or around water.
Check for Children in Cars
Vehicles heat up quickly, even in cooler temperatures. The temperature inside a vehicle can rise to over 110F when outside temperatures are only in the mid 60s.
• Never leave any child unattended in a vehicle for any period of time, even if the windows are open. A child’s body temperature can increase 3 to 5 times faster than an adult’s.
Protect Yourself from the Sun and Heat
• When spending time outdoors, adults and children should use sunscreen with a sun protective factor (SPF) of at least 15 with UVA and UVB protection. Reapply sunscreen (even waterproof sunscreen) at least every two hours, even on cloudy days. Remember – sunscreen reduces damage from UV radiation, but does not prevent it.
• Bicycles, ATVs, dirt bikes, and other riding toys (skateboards, in-line skates, scooters) go fast and falls from riding equipment may cause serious injury and/or death. Appropriate helmets and safety gear should be worn at all times. Children should be taught to practice and obey traffic safety rules.
• Fasten seat belts while driving or riding in a motor vehicle. Always buckle your child in the car using a child safety seat, booster seat, or seat belt according to the child's height, weight, and age. Check for hot surfaces, such as belt buckles, before buckling up.
For more information, contact the Oklahoma State Health Department Injury Prevention Service at (405) 271-3430, or your local county health department. Enjoy the summer – safely!
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