Summer is the season for getting out of the house, going on vacation, taking adventurous excursions, and…getting injured? Heat strokes, playground injuries, bug bites, animal attacks, fireworks, swimming pool accidents – summertime increases the risk of all of these common accidents and injuries. That doesn’t mean you have to be a shut-in all season long: it only means you should increase your awareness of personal injury risks and take steps to stay safe this summer.
Summers in San Jose reach average temperatures in the 80s. Running errands, hiking, and camping during summer can run heat-related risks such as heat exhaustion and heat stroke. The heat is especially dangerous for pets: never leave pets or children inside vehicles, even for a few minutes. The inside of your car can heat to temperatures well beyond the outdoor temperatures in just 10 minutes.
Recognize signs of heat exhaustion and stroke, such as clammy skin, fatigue, nausea, muscle cramps, dizziness, weakness, and headache. Stop for rest somewhere in the shade, drink plenty of water, and call for help if symptoms worsen. Avoid heat stroke by only performing strenuous activities early in the morning and in the evenings. Stay inside during the hottest part of the day.
Accidental drowning is the fifth-leading cause of unintentional injury death in the U.S. Children ages one to four are at the highest risk of drowning. Many of these accidents happen in home swimming pools. Keep your children safe while swimming by always having a responsible, sober adult supervising. Never leave children alone in a swimming pool, even for a few minutes, and do not supervise while distracted by a cell phone, friends, or alcohol.
Keep your swimming pool safe for others by properly maintaining the pool and deck area. Search for and repair hazards such as broken drain covers and filters, cloudy or slimy water, jagged metal components, and unreasonably slippery decks. Prevent wandering children from falling into your pool by surrounding it with non-climbable fencing and a locked gate or pool cover.
Slips, trips, and falls are some of the most common reasons for emergency department visits year-round. Summertime has a few unique risks that can lead to fall accidents, such as wet floors from swimming areas, melted ice, spilled drinks, and more time spent on the playground. Prevent falls by teaching your children common safety rules, such as walking instead of running. Make sure playgrounds are safe, with cushioned surface areas and well-maintained playground equipment.
Always make sure your children wear helmets when bicycling. Not only is it the law to wear one if you’re under 18 in San Jose, but it’s the safest way to ride. Bicycle helmets significantly reduce the risk of serious head and brain injuries in the event of an accident. Supervise children at all times when near fall hazards. If you think your child hit his or her head, go to the hospital for a checkup right away. Fast medical care can make all the difference in treating a brain injury.
Fireworks can seem like fun and games until your child suffers a third-degree burn or traumatic amputation in an explosion. About 9,300 people suffer serious injuries from fireworks in the U.S. every year. Almost half (45%) of these victims are under the age of 14. Keep fireworks away from children; even sparklers are dangerous. Sparklers burn at around 2,000 degrees – enough to cause serious third-degree burns. Leave fireworks to the professionals and keep them out of your kids’ hands to help prevent injuries and fires.
Enjoy your summer without a trip to the hospital by following these basic warm-weather safety tips for San Jose. If you or a loved one has been injured this summer in the Bay Area, a dedicated personal injury lawyer can help. Contact Henshaw & Henry today to schedule your free consultation.