Keep safety first

With summer vacation and more people going out, it’s a good idea to keep safety in mind. Below are some tips for summer safety around vehicles and activities for children.

Remember not to leave valuables or cash in your car, and if you must leave them in the car, lock them in the trunk. Never leave children and pets in a locked vehicle and always check when you exit your vehicle. Temperatures in a vehicle during the summer can climb to dangerous levels in just minutes.

With children out of school, it’s more likely they will be walking in the neighborhood or playing outside. Drive safely and slowly around parks and playgrounds, and keep an eye out for children and pets, especially when driving in residential areas. Children and pets may be more concerned with catching a ball, staying on their bike or running after their dog than watching for vehicles coming toward them.

It’s a good idea that parents, especially when working outside the home, provide a list of phone numbers of neighbors, family and friends that children can call in an emergency.

Require your children to check in before leaving the house and when returning home. It’s also recommended that parents know the route children will take to and from a given location, such as summer camp, the park, the store or a friend’s house. If there’s an emergency, knowing the route and where children should be will make a difference if there is an emergency.

When going to summer camp, the park, the store or a friend’s house, remind your children that there is safety in numbers and that it is best to be with a group of friends. And make sure that they know to call 911 or contact a responsible adult if the feel unsafe or see something that makes them uncomfortable.

If they are riding a bike, make sure they have a helmet and wear as well as brightly colored or reflective clothing.

Summer break also means more time on the internet, so parents should remind their children to never give out personal information on the internet, whether it’s on social networking sites or interactive games.

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