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Summer Safety Tips From the Missouri State Parks

Summer is a time for families and spending some time outdoors.  The Missouri State Parks system has several summer safety recommendations for you.

  1. Master water safety. Always supervise kids and remember, not everyone knows how to swim. Wear a properly fitted life jacket while swimming in lakes and rivers, and while out on the boat.
  2. Beat the heat and the sun. Overheating and sunstroke can occur in all ages while participating in strenuous activities during hot weather. Wear loose, lightweight, light-colored clothing when you’re planning to be outside. Whenever possible, schedule outdoor activities in the morning or evening. If someone starts to show signs of overheating, move them to a cool location immediately, make sure they get plenty of water and seek medical assistance if their condition doesn’t improve or worsens.
  3. Sunscreen, sunscreen, sunscreen. A few serious sunburns now could lead to skin cancer in the future. To prevent sunburn, cover up and use sunscreen every time you go outside. Sunscreen also prevents hyperpigmentation and premature aging. The American Association of Dermatologists recommends wearing, at minimum, an SPF 30 and choosing water-resistant and broad-spectrum products. Apply liberally.
  4. Keep bugs at bay. Protect yourself from bites and diseases, such as Zika, West Nile virus and Lyme disease, all of which can be transmitted by insects. Use insect repellent containing DEET that provides long-lasting protection. Check for ticks after being outdoors and if you find one, remove it immediately using a recommended safe method.
  5. Drink right. you really should stay away from alcohol when you’re outside in the sun and heat. It’s easy to get dehydrated in the sun, particularly if you’re active and sweating.
  6. Check the weather before heading outside.
  7. Wear your helmet. we do recommend wearing a helmet when riding a bike, horse, motorcycle, dirtbike or UTV. Be sure your helmet fits properly and is secure.
  8. Tell someone. Be sure to tell someone where you’re going and when you plan to return. Once you return home safely, let them know. This helps in the event things go awry so they know to look for you if you’re not back in the expected timeframe.
  9. Keep wildlife wild. While it might be tempting to feed the cute little ducklings by the pond, the baby deer that’s left alone or even get up close and personal to get that perfect picture, remember wildlife is just that – wild! They can be unpredictable and possibly bite or attack out of fear or defense. Be sure to give them plenty of space.
  10. Prevent fires. Here in Missouri we are dry! So whether you’re roasting marshmallows over a fire pit or grilling burgers on your back patio, make sure to keep those activities at least 10 feet from a building. And don’t forget to extinguish all fires completely before leaving them unattended.


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