Noble McIntyre on August 28, 2012
The air already feels a little crisper on your average Oklahoma evening, and that means Labor Day is right around the corner. Summer’s last hurrah will be celebrated nationwide with barbeques, pool parties, trips to the beach, fireworks, and bonfires. A three day weekend is a chance to enjoy that extra time with family and friends. Any time the nation stops to celebrate though, it’s important to reflect on some of the safety concerns that come with those festivities. As you and your loved ones are planning out your weekend in and around Oklahoma City, keep these precautions in mind.
It’s getting colder at night, but the days are still warm and sunny. Whether it’s a pool party or a last trip to the lake for the summer, swimming will play a big part in many families’ long weekend plans. Parents should keep an eye on children regardless of age; young children especially should never be allowed to swim without supervision. Even after a summer of practicing, swimming accidents can occur to even the most experienced swimmers.
Adults should be careful as well, with many gatherings taking place on the waterfront, the mix of water and alcohol can become an issue. Take care to monitor not just yourself, but friends and family members as well. When drinking, even the most skilled swimmers are at risk of drowning.
Hot dogs, hamburgers, and s’mores are cook-out favorites, and Labor Day weekend is often the last chance to squeeze in cooking over an open flame. Regardless of whether your grilling technique of choice involves propane or charcoal, any time there is fire involved extra safety steps are necessary. Always check your equipment, and make sure to keep an eye on the fire, no matter how small it is.
In addition to cook-outs, many families will be attending firework displays or bonfires as well. Both of these activities are great for their ability to bring communities together, but they can also be dangerous. Take care to only participate in professionally run firework displays.
Many families treat Labor Day weekend as a chance to take a trip for the day or the whole weekend. The roads will likely reflect this with a fair amount of congestion. Any time there are more people on the roads, there are bound to be more accidents. A little patience and common sense should help keep you and your family safe. Holiday traffic around toll booths and interchanges can be frustrating, but gaining a few potential minutes is not worth the risk of a motor vehicle accident caused by speeding or an impulsive decision.
Lastly, Labor Day weekend celebrations generally come with their share of alcohol. It’s nice to have a cold beer or two with friends and family, but make sure not to mix drinking and driving. Always have a designated driver.
This holiday weekend, have fun, celebrate, but above all else, be safe.