Labor Day, the first Monday in September, is a time when we celebrate the many contributions of American workers. For families all across the U.S., Labor Day can be seen as a last gasp of summer, one more time to light up the barbecue or head out of town for the weekend. Yet with all this fun and frivolity do come several key safety concerns. In fact, as the National Safety Council reported, Labor Day is among the most dangerous of holidays for traffic accidents, with nearly 400 in 2013 alone. if you really want to ensure the best Labor Day possible, it's important to serve up these safety tips to your family, right alongside the burgers and dogs:
1. Grill in peace
Labor Day is bound to be one of the last times for grilling before fall rolls around. That's why you must always practice proper safety techniques behind the grill. Before using your grill, take the time to clean it, and opt for crumpled aluminum foil over a wired brush that will inevitably flake. When cleaning, it's a good idea to check the gas line and make sure it's not frayed or damaged. Finally, always keep spacing in mind, and that means keeping your grill away from your home and using long-handled tools like forks and tongs for added safety.
2. Watch out in water
Swimming is an especially popular pastime during most Labor Day festivities. But as with grilling, it's vital that you remember that injuries can be avoided with the proper safety precautions. The most common injuries involve falls on the pool deck, so make sure no one is running. Another common cause of injury is people hitting their heads while in the pool; the best way to avoid that is to ban head-first diving and promote the use of the pool's stairs. Though not as frequent, people are affected by pool chemicals, so watch how much you use while cleaning.
3. Keep your eyes on the road
As mentioned above, many parts of the country experience a spike in traffic accidents around Labor Day. Fortunately, the key to safe driving is planning ahead and staying aware. Before your family heads off on their long weekend, get your car checked out, including the tires and brakes, and change your oil, especially if you're using brands with a high viscosity. For added safety, bring along an emergency kit, which should include flares, tire-changing tools, jumper cables and a flashlight. Lastly, plan your route before you hit the road, and always check the weather report for wherever you're headed.
4. Celebrate with caution
Though fireworks are a part of some Labor Day celebrations, the NSC explained that children ages 10 to 14 are three times more likely to be injured. When you and your family are launching fireworks at home, make the effort to fully prepare yourselves before the festivities begin. Never light off more than one firework, be it sparkler or Roman Candles, at a time. Whenever lighting fireworks, make sure everyone stands several feet away, to avoid both particulates and inhaling any irritants. To prevent burns, always keep a bucket or other source of water handy to out out fuses.
No matter what you're doing this Labor Day, you can always seek out medical treatment at your nearest CareWell Urgent Care Center. With locations across the East Coast, CareWell's doctors can treat most bumps, bruises, burns, sprains and other minor injuries.