This Week in Orange County July 12 2012Jul 12th, 2012 | By HV Insider | Category: Lifestyle
I hope that everyone enjoyed a fun, safe, and happy Independence Day holiday. It was great to see homes and businesses throughout the County with their American flags flying and red, white, and blue bunting donning porches and store fronts. These colors, our Stars and Stripes, represent the freedom we enjoy as Americans, thanks to the service and sacrifice of those who have served, are serving, and will serve in our Armed Forces. We are grateful to our brave men and women in uniform who protect our shores from both home and abroad each and every day.
The Fourth of July holiday also means that the summer season is well under way. We’ve already had some blisteringly hot days and have shared important information and tips about how to safely beat the heat. If you need a refresher, check out the press release archives on the County website at www.orangecountygov.com.
If spending time in a swimming pool or on the water is part of your plan to stay cool this summer, please keep safety in mind. According to Underwriters Laboratory (UL), a leading product safety testing organization, approximately 4,200 people go to the emergency room every year as a result of pool or spa-related injuries. To keep swim time fun time for your family, consider these swimming pool safety guidelines:
- Never leave children unattended in the water. Stay close enough that you are able to reach the water in less than 30 seconds should a situation arise.
- Have rescue devices close at hand.
- Children who cannot swim should wear proper life preservers. Water wings, floats, and inflatables are not designed for safety.
- Drain wading pools after children are done playing.
- Remove toys from the pool when you are done for the day so as not to attract a child’s attention.
- Keep a phone and emergency phone numbers nearby.
- Fence your pool – at least four feet high, with self-closing, self-latching gate with a latch that’s out of a child’s reach.
- Keep pool grates and drain covers in good repair and secure.
Many people turn to one of our beautiful rivers or lakes to cool off during the hot summer days. If you’re boating, please boat responsibly. According to the United States Coast Guard, nearly two-thirds of boating related fatalities were caused by drowning and of those, 90% were not wearing a life jacket. Before you hit the water, consider these safety tips:
- Have at least one U.S. Coast Guard approved personal flotation device (PFD) on board for each person.
- Make sure the PFDs are the appropriate size for each passenger.
- Just as with swimming pool safety, water wings, tubes, floats, and rafts are not life saving devices.
- Do not overload your boat, and don’t allow passengers to sit on the bow or the swim platform while you are under way.
- Give your boat a safety inspection before you go.
- Know the rules of the road. Contact the Coast Guard to find a boating safety class near you.
- Drink responsibly. You wouldn’t drink and drive your car, don’t drink and drive your boat. And, on a boat, sun and dehydration heighten the effect of alcohol.
Whether you’re in a backyard pool or on a boat enjoying the scenic beauty of Orange County, follow some simple, common sense advice and you’ll enjoy a fun, safe time staying cool this summer. Have fun.
Until next week, wishing you good health and happiness,
Edward A. Diana