After a long, cold winter May long weekend is finally here!! The weather forecast for the Edmonton area looks pretty decent, although let’s not kid ourselves, many an Albertan has gone May long camping while there is still snow on the ground. But for once mother nature seems to be cooperating and many families will take this opportunity to get away from the hustle and bustle and head to the great outdoors.
So before you all head out on your camping excursions, we’d like to leave you with a few camping safety tips. Camping is a lot more fun when everything goes as you hope it would.
- Choose the right campsite - consider age, physical limitations and medical needs — for yourself and everyone else in your group. Different amenities are available if you’re staying in a tent compared to a cabin or RV, so plan accordingly as to what gear you’ll need based on where you’ll be staying.
- Check the weather – check the weather forecast prior to leaving as mother nature can be fickle and you want to be prepared for whatever she throws your way. The weather will determine the kind of camping gear you’ll need to bring to ensure you stay warm and comfortable throughout your trip.
- Pack for the weather and your activities – you’ll want to make sure you bring appropriate attire for your trip. For example, if the weather forecast is calling for rain, bring rain jackets, waterproof clothing and boots to ensure you stay dry. Or if you are planning on boating or swimming, make sure you bring life jackets to make sure the activity is safe for everyone involved.
- Store food safely - To avoid food-borne illnesses, wash your hands and separate raw food from cooked meals.
- Pack food safely - Leaving food out on picnic tables or other areas can increase your chances of attracting wildlife. To prevent unwanted confrontations, pack your food in tight, waterproof containers and store them in an insulated cooler.
- Practice Campfire Safety - Fires within your campground site should be at least 15 feet from tent walls, trees and other buildings. It is important to keep your fire to a reasonable size and contained in a designated area like a fire pit. Never leave your fire unattended. Always keep a water bucket nearby and put the fire out before leaving the area or going to bed — making sure to extinguish all embers.
- Use insect repellant - To protect yourself from mosquitos, ticks and other insects, use insect repellent that doesn’t dissolve easily in water. Check for ticks throughout, especially in unsuspecting areas of your body. It is also recommended to wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants when hiking. After a hike or any outdoor activity, place your clothes in the dryer for at least 10 min on high heat to kill any ticks that may have come home on your clothing.
- Protect your self from the sun - UV rays are always present, even on cloudy days, and they can burn your skin just as severely as on a sunny day. Midday is when the sun’s rays are the strongest — seek shade, wear a hat or put on sunglasses to help protect you from the UV rays. Using a broad-spectrum sunscreen and lip screen with a sufficient SPF rating is also recommended.
- Drink water - Staying hydrated doesn’t mean drinking when you’re thirsty — it means drinking water regularly throughout the day. An emergency kit should include at least a 3- to 5-day supply of bottled water. If you feel thirsty, chances are you’re already dehydrated.
We hope you have a fun and safe May long weekend!! For information and assistance on how to stay safe at work, give us a call at Safety Ahead! 780-473-4772