Ah, Labor Day. With the long holiday weekend comes the end of summer. We celebrate by hosting backyard barbecues, picnics, and final trips to the lake or to the beach. This weekend is full of fun in the sun and serves as the perfect opportunity to finish off that summer bucket list before it’s time to get back into work or school mode. Still, with all this excitement, there are still hazards to be mindful of! With these safety tips, you’ll be sure to have a safe, happy Labor Day weekend!
In 2017, the National Safety Council estimated that over 400 people could be killed and over 47,000 people could be seriously injured on the road over Labor Day weekend. With the long weekend, there are more people on the road traveling to and from and even more safety risks. Often many of the accidents that take place over this weekend are due to impaired driving. Consider the lives at stake before getting behind the wheel – call an Uber or a friend and don’t get into the car with someone who has been drinking or doing illicit drugs.
And don’t forget! Driving while tired counts as an impairment. Be well-rested and alert. Take turns sitting behind the driver’s seat. Make frequent stops. With so many people on the road, it’s important to remain particularly vigilant. Observe speed limits and be respectful of other motorists. Wear your seatbelt and teach your children and teens to do the same. Most importantly, stock your car with all of the essentials like flashlights, batteries, and first aid kits.
Practice Healthy Habits
Most families use Labor Day as a time to make final summer memories before children return to school. Why not make your memories healthy ones? Get moving with a walk or a hike! Go swimming or play outdoor games like cornhole or can jam. If the weather is nice enough (and right now, it’s looking to be between 75 and 85) head to the pool or beach and do some swimming!
And at that back yard barbecue, make sure that you’re still trying to keep a balanced diet. There are so many seasonal options of fruits and vegetables to snack on throughout the day! That said, be wary of skipping meals, which is often a holiday habit. You’ll find you have a hard time keeping yourself from overeating, which is more detrimental in the long run. Additionally, going for smaller portions is also a great way to keep yourself from feeling uncomfortably full.
With the holiday weekend comes barbecues and a chance to fire up the grill one last time! With that comes grill safety. Always supervise the grill while it’s in use and make sure that everyone stays away, including pests. Long-handed tools like tongs and spatulas will keep the chef from burning their hand trying to remove items from the coals! Additionally, follow the manufacturers instructions and never add charcoal starter fluid onto ignited coals!
Labor Day weekend is also the time for boating for many families. Make sure that you have all of the safety equipment you need on board including an emergency kit, a first aid kit, and personal flotation devices that meet U.S. Coast Guard requirements. Develop a float plan and follow all of the necessary procedures and rules of the sea (3). Additionally, just as you shouldn’t drink and drive, don’t drink a boat. Alcohol is the cause of 16% of all boating fatalities and fines and possible jail times are at risk if you’re arrested for a BUI. Similarly, supervise children if you’re in or near the water and remain in designated areas supervised by a lifeguard. It’s important to remember not to swim on your own!
Now that you know the tips, get ready to have a safe, happy Labor Day! Having fun and making memories is your main priority, but it’s important to take the time to make the necessary safety precautions!