Memorial Day weekend is considered the unofficial start of summer. Whether you’re traveling or enjoying a backyard cookout, here are some tips for a safe and healthy holiday weekend:
- Food safety: It’s always important to thoroughly cook foods, especially when you’re grilling ground beef, poultry or pork. Make sure you refrigerate perishable foods within two hours. And don’t forget to always wash your hands with soap and water before handling food and after touching raw meat.
- Grill safety: Clean your grill before using. Check the tubes leading into the burner for any blockages. Do not use a grill in a garage, breezeway, carport, porch or near any surface that can catch fire. Keep children and pets away from the grill area by declaring a 3-foot “kid-free” safety zone around your grill.
- Water safety: To prevent drowning, avoid alcohol when swimming or boating. Wear a life jacket, approved by the U.S. Coast Guard, whenever you are on a boat. Make sure young children are supervised at all times when near water, even if they know how to swim. Learn CPR in case of an emergency. Find an American Red Cross CPR Class in Your Area.
- Sun safety: Protect against sunburn and heat stroke. Wear sunscreen with at least an SPF of 15 or higher and apply it generously throughout the day. Avoid lengthy sun exposure between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Wear a hat outdoors and a good pair of sunglasses to protect your eyes. Drink plenty of water, especially when in the sun or if you are sweating heavily. If you feel faint or nauseous, get into a cool place immediately.
- Travel safety: Do not drink and drive or travel with anyone who has been drinking. Do not text or use your cell phone while driving. Wear your seatbelt at all times. Make sure your vehicle has been properly serviced and is in good working shape before a long road trip.