The 4th of July is a favorite holiday for many Americans. It’s in the middle of summer which is especially great for families that often get everyone together for the big celebration. Popular 4th of July activities include grilling, pool and lake days, parades, camping, and of course, fireworks.
While everyone should be excited to partake in these festivities, there are also some things that people need to keep in mind.
Hospitals and emergency rooms report the 4th of July as one of their busiest times of the year. In fact, according to a report from the National Safety Council, there were over 11,000 injuries on July 4th, 2016 that were just related to firework incidents. That doesn’t include other hospitalizations for things like drunk driving, swimming accidents, and other unfortunate events.
So we’ve put together a list of tips that will help keep you and your family safe this 4th of July.
4th of July Home Safety Tips
No matter what you have planned for this year’s holiday, keep your loved ones safe by planning ahead and making smart decisions.
Going camping for the weekend? Follow these safety tips from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):
- Prepare safe food and water
- Protect against carbon monoxide poisoning
- Avoid wild animals, and protect family pets
- Fight the bug bite
- Protect yourself from the sun
- Prevent heat-related illnesses
- Be prepared with an emergency supplies kit
Spending time on the lake? Here are some general tips that you should follow. Additional water safety tips can be found on your state’s Department of Natural Resources website.
- Be aware of weather conditions before departing
- Use common sense on the water (use safe speeds, no horseplay, etc.)
- Be prepared with life jackets and emergency flotation devices
- Avoid drinking alcohol while operating a boat
- Learn how to swim, and be aware of your boating companions’ skill levels
- Follow local laws and regulations about boating and water activities
Pool safety tips include:
- Create and enforce pool rules with your guests, such as no diving, no running, etc.
- Designate an adult to be on “lifeguard duty” or rotate and take turns
- Make sure someone at the party is certified in CPR and first aid
- Keep a phone nearby in case of an emergency
Obviously, firework safety is a big concern on this holiday. Here are some tips for you to follow:
- Check your local and state laws on which fireworks are legal in your area
- Never use fireworks while under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Carefully supervise children who are using sparklers and other approved fireworks
- Only light fireworks outdoors, in areas that are free from combustibles and debris
- Maintain a safe distance after lighting a firework
- Do not try to re-light or handle malfunctioning fireworks
- Soak empty containers and unused fireworks in water for a few hours before discarding
- Keep a hose or bucket of water nearby in case of an emergency
For more information on preventing residential fires, visit Start Sleeping.
4th of July Work Safety Tips
Having a toolbox talk with your crew about 4th of July safety? Definitely review the information from above. But also keep in mind that there are ways you can protect your employees before, during, and after the holiday while at work.
Here are the main workplace safety tips to be aware of:
- Your employees are likely excited about their upcoming holiday plans. Make sure that they stay focused, though, while they are at work. Being distracted and not having their minds on the task at hand can lead to serious accidents and injuries. The same goes for any employee scheduled to work on the day of the holiday. Keep their heads in the game.
- Many companies will organize a “cook-out” or company picnic the week of the holiday. Be sure to follow safe grilling practices, and to have cabs or designated drivers if alcohol is going to be served.