Fourth Of July 2021: Health And Safety Tips

July 1, 2021

Who is ready to scream “red white and blue”? The good news is that this year, we can finally enjoy the fourth of July holiday without a lockdown or crowd restrictions. Businesses and events have opened up and vaccines have been distributed to most of the population in Vernon and the rest of Connectuct. For those still unvaccinated, we urge you to continue to wear masks and not to congregate in crowds.

As many of us have purchased fireworks to light up in our backyards, parks and beaches, we have to remember the health and safety of our friends and families when it comes to fireworks and other Fourth of July holiday safety issues.

Watch out for firework hazards!

Ouch! Did you get too close to a firework last year when setting it off? Yep, that’s a burn you’ll want to avoid this year when lighting a firework. Remember, fireworks can cause serious burns and eye injuries. On average, 180 people go to the emergency room every day with fireworks-related injuries in the month around the July 4th holiday.

Make the choice to protect yourself and your family from fireworks injuries this year in 2020. The Consumer Product Safety Commissions recommends that you follow these safety tips when using fireworks:

  • Never allow young children to play with or ignite fireworks.
  • Avoid buying fireworks that are packaged in brown paper because this is often a sign that the fireworks were made for professional displays and that they could pose a danger to consumers.
  • Always have an adult supervise fireworks activities. Parents don't realize that young children suffer injuries from sparklers. Sparklers burn at temperatures of about 2,000 degrees - hot enough to melt some metals.
  • Never place any part of your body directly over a fireworks device when lighting the fuse. Back up to a safe distance immediately after lighting fireworks.
  • Never try to re-light or pick up fireworks that have not ignited fully.
  • Never point or throw fireworks at another person.
  • Keep a bucket of water or a garden hose handy in case of fire or other mishap.
  • Light fireworks one at a time, then move back quickly.
  • Never carry fireworks in a pocket or shoot them off in metal or glass containers.
  • After fireworks complete their burning, douse the spent device with plenty of water from a bucket or hose before discarding it to prevent a trash fire.
  • Make sure fireworks are legal in your area before buying or using them.

Be safe in the sun and avoid undercooked foods!

So far we’ve had two heat waves hit Vernon in the past month, and from what is being predicted, this is just the beginning of a hot Connecticut summer. AFC Urgent Care Vernon suggests staying hydrated and avoid leaving food out under the sun. Staying hydrated ensures that you can avoid heat stroke or heat exhaustion. Leaving food out during your family barbeque may lead to unwanted stomach bugs and illnesses. No bueno!

If you’re out in the sun, gathering UV rays, remember to:

  • Apply Sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 or higher. The CDC studies suggest applying sunscreen 15 minutes before going outside and to re-apply at least every 2 hours after swimming, sweating, or toweling off.
  • Put food in coolers if they need to be refrigerated and to pack food away in containers and out of the sun. Always wash your hands when meal prepping and to cook meats thoroughly to reduce the chances of anyone getting a food borne illness
  • Find shade if you can to avoid excessive sun exposure
  • Drink at least 8 glasses of water per day.

AFC Urgent Care Vernon Is Ready for the Fireworks!

We’re open normal hours this July 4th: 8am-5pm.

Wherever you celebrate the 4th of July, please celebrate it safely! If you need us, we’re open 7 days a week. AFC Urgent Care Vernon at 179 Talcottville Road is ready to treat you for firework-related injuries. If you are going away for the holiday and need a COVID-19 test, we also offer that with quick results on the same day with no appointment necessary. We make sure that you feel safe during your visit with us as your ER alternative, and can treat you for firework injuries, burns, and more...but we hope we don’t have to!

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