This week sees the official beginning of the Summer Season. Here are a few Summer Safety Tips:
Water Safety: Tragic water accidents happen quickly. The most common reason for aquatic mishaps is a lack of safety knowledge. Below are some very important safety recommendations while staying cool this summer:
- Learn to swim
- Swim near a lifeguard
- Never swim alone
- Supervise children closely, even when lifeguards are present
- Don’t rely on flotation devices, such as rafts, you may lose them in the water
- If caught in a rip current, swim sideways until free, don’t swim against the current’s pull
- Alcohol and swimming don’t mix
- Protect your head, neck, and spine — don’t dive into unfamiliar waters — feet first, first time
- No glass containers at the beach — broken glass and bare feet don’t mix
- No beach fires except in designated areas — fire residue and superheated sand can severely burn bare feet — use a barbeque that is elevated off the sand
- Report hazardous conditions to lifeguards or other beach management personnel
- Never turn your back to the ocean — you may be swept off coastal bluffs or tide pool areas and into the water by waves that can come without warning
Rip currents are the most threatening natural hazard along our coast. They pull victims away from the beach. The United States Lifesaving Association has found that 80% of the rescues affected by ocean lifeguards involve saving those caught in rip currents.
A rip current is a seaward moving current that circulates water back to the sea after it is pushed ashore by waves. Each wave accumulates water on shore creating seaward pressure. This pressure is released in an area with the least amount of resistance, which is usually the deepest point along the ocean floor. Rip currents also exist in areas where the strength of the waves are weakened by objects such as rock jetties, piers, natural reefs, and even large groups of bathers. Rip currents often look like muddy rivers flowing away from shore.
Rip currents are sometimes mistakenly called “rip tides” or “undertows.” These are misnomers. Rip currents are not directly associated with tides and they do not pull people under.
Try to avoid swimming where rip currents are present, but if you become caught in one, swim parallel to the shore until the pull stops and then swim back to shore. If you are unable to return to the beach, tread water and wave for lifeguard assistance.
Stay at least 100 feet away from piers and jetties. Rip currents often exist along the side of fixed objects in the water.
Be aware of ocean conditions. Lifeguards are trained to identify potential hazards. Ask a lifeguard about the conditions before entering the water.
Boating Safety: The U.S. Coast Guard provides many classes and safety tips for boaters. We suggest you become familiar with boating safety laws in your state. Check out the U.S. Coast Guard’s Boating Safety Tips.
Hot Weather Tips for your Pets: The ASPCA has many tips on how to protect your pets during these hot summer months. Check out the ASPCA site for these tips. Don’t forget to care for your pets during these hot months.
Spencer Insurance wants to make sure you protect yourself and your family during these enjoyable summer months. Make sure your family is properly protected during the summer. Check with us about your boat, motorcycle and RV insurance coverage. Go to our website for more information.