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Red Cross urges safety over holiday

With the long Memorial Day weekend on the horizon, many people are making plans for a fun-filled holiday with friends and family. The American Red Cross offers the following tips to stay safe whatever their plans include.
“Memorial Day is the unofficial start of summer,” said Todd James, Executive Director of the American Red Cross of Hancock, Seneca and Wyandot Counties. “We’re all hoping for beautiful, sunny skies and encourage our community to remember these tips to stay safe and enjoy it.”
DRIVING SAFETY
• Carry a disaster supplies kit in the trunk.
• Avoid distractions, especially cell phones and don’t text while driving.
• Pay attention to the weather forecast along the route to the final destination.
• Download the Red Cross Tornado app and set the locations monitored to “current location”.
• Make frequent stops and rest when tired.
• Observe speed limits. Be respectful of other motorists; follow the rules of the road.
• Turn headlights on as dusk approaches, or during inclement weather.
• Use caution in work zones.
• Let someone know the arrival time, destination, and route, so help can be sent if needed.
GRILLING SAFETY
• Never grill indoors — not in the house, camper, tent, or any enclosed area.
• Always supervise a barbecue grill when in use, and make sure everyone, including the pets, stays away from the grill.
• Keep the grill out in the open, away from the house, deck, tree branches or anything that could catch fire.
• Keep the chef safe by using the long-handled tools especially made for cooking on the grill.
• Never add charcoal starter fluid when coals have already been ignited.
• Be ready to close the lid and turn off the grill to cut off the fuel if necessary.
• Keep a fireproof pan under the grill to catch any falling ash or grease.
• Trim excess fat from meat to avoid flare-ups.
• Wash one’s hands in hot soapy water before preparing food, after touching raw meat and after any interruptions such as using the bathroom, handling pets, stopping to do something with children.
SWIMMING AND POOL SAFETY
• Constantly supervise children when they are near water. Never leave a young child unattended near water, and do not trust a child’s life to another child
• Teach children to always ask permission to go near water.
• Avoid distractions when supervising children around water. If a child is missing, check the water first. Seconds count in preventing death or disability.
• Swim in designated areas supervised by lifeguards.
• Always swim with a buddy; do not allow anyone to swim alone.
• Have young children or inexperienced swimmers wear U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jackets around water, but do not rely on life jackets alone.
• Have appropriate equipment, such as reaching or throwing equipment, a cell phone, life jackets and a first aid kit.
• Know how and when to call 9-1-1 or the local emergency number.

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