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Safety Tips for Your Family This Fourth of July

Being safe on Independence Day is something very important for you and your family to consider during this holiday. Whether you are a single parent or you are sharing custody with your ex, or maybe you and your family are still together, the importance of safety during the holidays is something that all families need to keep on the forefront of their minds. Here are a few essential safety tips to consider from the American Red Cross for you and your family this Thursday, July 4, 2013.

Firework safety is likely the most important concern that parents need to consider during this holiday, both for the safety of their children and themselves. Hat many people don't realize is that little fireworks can be extremely dangerous if mishandled or placed in the hands of a child. Whatever you do, do not allow your children near your personal firework collection, and make sure they understand the dangers associated with it. Before purchasing your collection, make sure that the area you plan on spending the day in allows for fireworks. There are many cities in which these actions are illegal, even in a controlled environment. Next, make sure that the fireworks you are using have a legible packaging, and then proceed to follow the instructions. Fireworks that have no labels are highly discouraged as they may be dangerous or illegal. Next, you want to make sure the area you plan on lighting the fireworks in is safe. This means that you are on a level ground, with no branches or leaves on the ground or trees in the nearby area. Always makes sure that you have a hose or buckets of water nearby.

The next safety tip you will want to heed is water safety, whether you are out on the ocean or lake or even in the safety of your own home. Remember, first and foremost, that drowning can occur in any amount of water which means that children must be supervised closely at all times. Even hanging out in the shallow end of the pool can be extremely dangerous if the child hits their head or inhales water on accident. Be sure to designate person to keep a close eye on the kids, and that means without distractions of the cell phone, a book, etc. Considers this a good time to spend swimming with the kids! If you are at the beach, make sure that all who are in the water are able to swim, if not be sure to place a life jacket on hem. For adults, never drink while under the influence of alcohol. This can lead to making irresponsible decisions that may cost you your life, especially if you are in the ocean. For your sake, and for the sake of the children, always use caution when swimming, especially on a holiday that consists often of a lot of alcohol.

Another factor that is usually involved with Fourth of July celebrations is the grill, who doesn't love a good barbeque while enjoying the community firework show? Grill safety is very important, however, because near children and flammable objects, what was meant to create delicious food could result in a disaster. If you are using a grill, be sure that you are not indoors of any sort, this includes your camper, a tent, in your home, etc. Be sure that you are outdoors where there is good air ventilation, and not located too close to the house or to trees. Apart from those helping with the food, make sure that other people stay clear of the grill, especially children who may not understand how hot it can get. As the chef, makes sure you use the proper tools for the barbeque grill so that you keep your hands safe while working in the heat.

Lastly, while everyone will be enjoying the day off of work and time with friends and family, don't forget that sun protection is extremely important during the hot month of July. Make sure that you and your children are continually reapplying your sun block and be certain that it is one that offers protection from both UVA and UVB rays. Don't forget to wear the necessary sunglasses that will protect your eyes from the blinding UV rays as well. Also, when out in the sun all day, and possibly in the water too, you are going to be more susceptible to dehydration. Be certain that you are constantly consuming water during the day and avoid alcohol and caffeinated drinks as much as possible.

Happy Fourth of July!

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Learning to laugh again....
After almost 3 years fighting with my ex-wife over everything, I was recently awarded primary custody of my children, child support, and allowed to leave the state, something that I understand is not so common in North Carolina --fathers being awarded custody that is. Thanks to Kevin Hopper, the kids and I are finally moving past the nightmare and learning to laugh again.
- Newton
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