Memorial Day Safety Tips

With summer finally approaching, North Dakota Health and Human Services (HHS) would like to offer safety tips that will help you and your family keep safe this Memorial Day. Whether you are planning to travel, barbecue or just spend a weekend in the sun – these tips can help you have even more fun, because you can have more comfort in your safety.

Travel Safely
  • Prepare for road trips by ensuring your car is in top working condition.
  • Check your tire pressure, fill your tank or charge your car before heading out on your trip.
  • Equip yourself with emergency essentials such as maps or GPS, cell phone and charger, a spare tire, jack, jumper cables, tools, flashlight, batteries, first aid kit, blankets, shovel, water and nonperishable food.
  • Avoid distracted driving. Check out this video: Gary on the Street: Holiday Driving Advice from Teens | Safe Kids Worldwide.
  • Don’t allow yourself or anyone else to drive while or after drinking alcohol.
  • When you are driving, always wear your seat belt and make sure others in the vehicle are wearing theirs.
Grilling and Picnic Food Safety
  • Never leave a lit or hot grill unattended; a responsible adult should stand guard to control flames and keep children and animals away from hot surfaces.
  • Take precautions for grill fires. In case a flare-up or fire occurs, keep a fire extinguisher nearby and know how to use it.
  • Take food preparation precautions and avoid cross-contamination with plenty of handwashing. Here are some helpful food safety tips to help prevent foodborne illness.
  • If you do end up with any sort of digestion problems after a barbecue, stay hydrated and seek medical assistance if you experience serious symptoms.
Boating and Water Safety
  • Always actively supervise kids in and around open water. Here is a video on children’s water safety: Safety in Seconds: Water Safety | Safe Kids Worldwide
  • Teach children that swimming in open water is not the same as swimming in a pool. Swimmers of all capabilities need to be aware of uneven surfaces, river currents, undertows and changing weather.
  • Always have your children and infants wear an appropriate fitting life jacket approved by the U.S. Coast Guard while on boats, around open bodies of water or when participating in water sports. If you’re unsure of how to choose the right life vest, here is a resource.
  • When on a boat, hold on to your infant while also wearing your own life jacket. Car seats are not a safe option. If the boat were to capsize, the car seat would instantly sink.
  • Do not drink alcoholic beverages while boating.
  • Know the North Dakota boating laws and regulations. The North Dakota Game and Fish Department has resources for these guidelines.
  • Don’t forget about safety for your four-legged family members: 3 Things to Consider Before You Take Your Dog Boating | Daily Paws.
Summer Sun Safety
  • Use broad-spectrum sunscreen (American Academy of Dermatology recommends SPF 30 or higher) and make sure to reapply as necessary, especially if swimming or sweating.
  • Drink plenty of water to stay hydrated and keep cool.
  • Don’t forget your eyes. Keep your eyes protected by wearing a hat and sunglasses.
Please talk about these tips with your kids and ask friends and parents to do the same. Then enjoy the summer and remember to keep having fun!