Hazards to Avoid During Summer Vacation
Here in Virginia, summer vacation means warmer weather, kids out of school, time off from work, and spending quality time with the family. Locals and out-of-towners alike flock to the Commonwealth’s favorite tourist destinations. From relaxing sandy beaches to historical attractions to hikes in the highlands, the possibilities for a memorable vacation are endless.
There is a lot of pent up desire to go on a summer vacation this year. Covid-19 caused most of us to change our travel plans last year, and many people are looking forward to “making up for lost time”. We encourage everyone to enjoy your vacation this summer, but we also encourage you to do so in a responsible manner.
Remember that, although we have come a long way since the Covid-19 pandemic began last year, we are not totally out of the woods yet. The virus is still out there, and it can still cause severe symptoms for certain segments of the population. Continue to follow CDC guidelines, stay distanced from others outside your travel party, wear masks when required, and use plenty of hand sanitizer wherever you go.
Keep in mind also that contracting a virus is not the only danger to avoid during summer vacation. There are several other hazards to watch out for:
Many people look forward to fun in the sun on warm summer days but staying out in the sun too long can cause sunburn. This is especially true for individuals who have sensitive skin. A bad sunburn not only causes blisters and a lot of pain, too much exposure over the long term can also result in more serious conditions like skin cancer.
Closely related to sun exposure is the risk of extreme heat. In the middle of the summer, the temperatures in Virginia can easily get up into the 90s or even exceed 100°. Spending too much time outside can cause exhaustion and heatstroke. This can happen even faster if you leave someone in a hot car with no windows open.
Whether you are swimming at the beach or a pool, you need to be aware of the risks of diving accidents and drowning. Parents also need to be watching young kids who either do not know how to swim or their skills are not totally developed.
Summer vacations mean spending a lot of time on the road. Increased driving in congested traffic results in more vehicle crashes and other traffic-related accidents in the summertime. Distracted driving is one of the major concerns as travelers try to read their GPSs to find out where they are going. Another common problem is driver fatigue from long road trips.
Dogs spend more time in the summer traveling with their human companions. But when dogs are in unfamiliar surroundings and they encounter strange faces, they can be triggered to attack someone unexpectedly.
Important Summer Travel Safety Tips
- Always bring along and use plenty of sunscreen if you plan to be out in the sun. If you will be swimming, use a waterproof sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher.
- Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of fluids (preferably cold water and beverages with high electrolytes) when you are out in the summer heat. Try not to spend too much time outside during the hottest part of the day, and never leave any child or animal by themselves in a hot car, even for just a few minutes.
- When spending a day at the beach or at a pool, watch your children closely and make sure they are not in any danger. Also, watch out for rip currents at the beach that could pull you into deeper water. Finally, only swim at beaches or pools where there is a lifeguard on duty.
- Keep a close eye on your dog and make sure it does not get close to any strangers.
- Always get plenty of rest before driving on a summer road trip.
- Stay off of your phone when you are driving and leave the navigation to one of the passengers.
- Summer driving means lots of road construction, so be sure to plan your trip in advance so you have plenty of time to reach your destination.
- Before you set out on your road trip, have your oil changed and your car checked over for other maintenance issues.
- Take frequent breaks while driving and alternate drivers whenever possible.
Buck, Toscano & Terezkerz is Here if You Need Us
We hope you have a safe and enjoyable vacation this summer. And we hope you make some wonderful memories with your family and friends. If something does go wrong and you get injured because of another party’s negligence, remember that we are just a phone call away. After you get medical help, call our office at (434) 977-7977 or message us online for a free consultation with one of our attorneys.