Summer Safety Tips

By Rachel Martin

June 28, 2012 Updated Jun 28, 2012 at 6:39 PM EDT

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Indiana’s NewsCenter) – The Fort Wayne-Allen County Department of Health and Fort Wayne Fire Department share summertime safety tips.

It's summer time and that means fun in the sun! But the sun and heat can pose a threat to outdoor activities, that’s why the Fort Wayne-Allen County Department of Health partnered with the Fort Wayne Fire Department Thursday for a backyard on how to keep your cool.

“Days like this when we're seeing temperatures up to 100 degrees, people should do as much as they can to stay cool, stay hydrated, drink plenty of water and stay inside as much as possible,” said John Silcox, Communications Director for the Health Department.

But Silcox says, if you’ve got to be outside, he suggests staying in the shade as much as possible, be sure to wear light-colored, loose-fitting clothing a hat and sunglasses. A little sunscreen won't hurt either, and of course he says, drink plenty of water.

“Stay away from the alcoholic and caffeinated beverages which actually can cause you to lose more water.”

Silcox says drowning is the fifth leading cause of death in the summer. So when playing by the pool or lake, wear life jackets, never leave children unsupervised, and have a phone nearby in case of an emergency.

“It's also important that people know CPR and things like that so they can intervene if there is some sort of emergency,” said Silcox.

Silcox says FWFD, the Dept. of Health, and other community services offer CPR classes.

Ann Applegate, Director of the Food & Consumer Protection division for the Dept. of Health, says not to forget when having barbecues and picnics to keep hot food hot and cold food cold.

“Ensure that those food temperatures are where they need to be, or bacteria can enter food, you can consume it, and become ill,” said Applegate.

Applegate also says it’s important to cook meats to their proper internal temperature to prevent food poisoning. Poultry, such as chicken, turkey and ground turkey, must be reach 165 degrees. Ground beef and other meats must be cooked to 155 degrees. Steak, pork and fish must be cooked to an internal temperature of 145 degrees.

The best place for your grill is outside on a concrete slab, away from your home and out from underneath umbrellas and awnings. When grilling, always have a fire extinguisher handy.

Have a safe summer!

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