Unintentional injury is the leading cause of death for people ages one through 44. Forty percent of all injury-related emergency visits and forty-two percent of all injury deaths occur during the summer months. Many of these injuries are preventable.
Join MUSC and Dorchester County EMS at the Summer Safety Festival this Saturday May 18, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Dorchester County Human Services Building, 500 North Main Street, Summerville. Bring your kids to ride through the bicycle safety course and enjoy free bounce houses, a climbing wall and face painting . Teen and adult drivers can learn the dangers of texting and driving at the golf cart demonstration. Kids will get a FREE bicycle helmets while supplies last.
Here are some easy tips to help keep you and your family safe this summer:
- Every year, 30 to 50 children are treated for injuries caused by falls from windows. Window screens do not keep children from falling. They are designed to pop out for fire safety and can be pushed out by the weight of a toddler.
- Supervise children and keep windows closed in upstairs rooms where they play. Also, consider installing window guards or stops to prevent windows from opening more than four inches.
- Fire pits are becoming increasingly popular for outdoor entertaining. While some burn wood, others use propane or natural gas. Because they burn very hot, they should be treated like all other fires and campfires. Keep kids at a safe distance and teach them that fire pits stay hot long after the flames go out.
- Lawn mowers are the major cause of foot and ankle amputations to children. Do not operate a riding mower when children are present. Do not let your children ride on a mower, even with an adult. Mowers should not be used at dusk or night when it is difficult to see.
In the water:
- Precautions include wearing a life jacket, swimming with a buddy and knowing your limits. It’s always best to swim on a life-guarded beach in areas approved for swimming. Of course, young children should not be left alone, even for a moment, near pools or other bodies of water.
- Boaters should wear life jackets, avoid alcohol and take boating education classes.
On the road:
- Car seats for young children and seat belts for older passengers offer the best protection from injury and death in the event of a crash. Once teens get behind the wheel, they should develop their driving skills by practicing in safe, calm and controlled situations.
- For other activities on wheels, limit use of bicycles, scooters, skateboards and in-line skates to the daytime. Children should wear a certified helmet (bicycle or multi-sport) and other protective gear such as elbow pads, kneepads and sturdy shoes.
- Basic advice for pedestrians includes walking on sidewalks, using marked crosswalks, observing traffic signals and watching for turning vehicles. To be more visible to drivers, wear brightly colored clothing during the day and special reflective materials at night.
- Pedestrians should be extra cautious about marked crosswalks without signal lights.