Pay attention to safety this weekend
Memorial Day weekend is generally recognized as the unofficial start of summer, but it only takes a few precautions to help ensure your summer does not start off on a sour note.
Suffolk Police and Suffolk Fire & Rescue want all residents to have a safe time during the extended weekend. As a result, they offer these steps people can take to stay safe:
- Lock your vehicle, and do not leave items of value inside.
- Password-protect your cell phones.
- Always carry a form of ID on you, especially when running and jogging.
- Do not drink and drive or let friends and family drink and drive.
- Avoid carrying large sums of cash. Remove and lock away Social Security cards and passports from your wallet or purse when they are not needed.
- At home, if you are traveling, tell a trusted neighbor or friend, leave lights on inside and out, and set your motion and door alarms.
- Drive only when well-rested and alert.
- Use your seat belt, and make sure everyone in the vehicle does the same.
- Observe the speed limit and follow other rules of the road.
- Give full attention to the road and avoid distractions such as cell phones. Remember, as of Jan. 1, it is now illegal to hold a handheld personal communications device while driving in Virginia.
- Leave ample room when behind other vehicles.
- Never grill indoors.
- Always supervise a grill when in use, and make sure everyone, including pets, stays away from the grill.
- Keep the grill out in the open, away from the house, the deck, tree branches, or anything that could catch fire.
- Use long-handled tools especially made for cooking on the grill to avoid burns to the hands or arms or possible issues with sleeves on clothing.
- 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.
- Swim only in designated areas supervised by lifeguards. Always swim with a buddy; do not allow anyone to swim alone.
- Prevent unsupervised access to the water. Install and use barriers around your home pool or hot tub.
- Maintain constant supervision. Always stay within arm’s reach of young children, even when lifeguards are present.
- If a child is missing, check the water first.
- Have appropriate rescue equipment, a phone, life jackets, and a first aid kit near the pool.