Make the Fourth of July Weekend the Safest and Not the ‘Most Dangerous’
Posted on June 30th, 2017 by Zane Cagle
Keep the Holiday Fun by Practicing Some Safety
Who doesn’t love the Fourth of July? Safety reminders and a few minutes of planning can be the difference between injuries and a safe weekend. Due to alcohol, heavy traffic and fireworks, the holiday can be the most dangerous weekend of the summer. Anytime alcohol is combined with driving, boating or fireworks, the results can be bad.
We know the combination of drinking and driving is deadly. Obviously, a drunk person should not be doing the grilling or supervising the kids and fireworks, so use some common sense that is not always so common.
So, plan a little to keep things safe:
Focus on the Road
Millions of people will be on the highways this four-day weekend. The Missouri State Highway Patrol is participating in C.A.R.E (Crash Awareness & Reduction Effort) over the holiday weekend. All available officers will be patrolling enforcing speed limits, looking for intoxicated drivers and aggressive driving violations.
Last year, five people were killed over the same holiday and 565 people were injured in 1,370 traffic crashes. Last year, 121 people were arrested for driving while intoxicated.
- Don’t drink and drive.
- Buckle up
- Drive at or below the speed limit
- Pay attention to the roadway. Avoid using your phone while driving
- Use caution near work zones. Work zones are much more common during the summer and if you are on the highways and interstates, you will probably come across a work zone.
- Use your headlights as dusk approaches and keep lights and windshields clean
Focus on the Child Safety Involving Fireworks
If you are in St. Louis City, you know that there is a St Louis City Ordinance 65824 prohibiting possessing, storing, selling, exposing, exploding, setting off–essentially, No Fireworks in the limits of the City of St. Louis. If you are not in the city limits and you live in an area where fireworks are permitted, observe safety rules. A fact too not often not share is that–About 28% of the ER firework injuries seen are due to sparklers. This could be because many adults think the most harmless firework is a sparkler, but in reality, that is incorrect.
- Never give fireworks to small children and always follow instructions on the packaging.
- Keep a supply of water close by as precaution
- Make sure the person lighting the fireworks has eye protection
- Never throw or point fireworks at other people
Every year people are seriously injured while operating charcoal and/or gas grills. While grilling is a part of the holiday, following some simple safety rules is smart.
- Always supervise a grill when in use
- Never grill indoors–not in a house, tent, camper or any enclosed area
- Make sure everyone, including pets stay away from the grill
- Keep the grill in the open, away from the house, the deck, tree branches or anything that could catch fire.
If you are headed to the lake, be sure that you supervise any children swimming. Of course, be sure that you have a sober boat driver and practice water safety on this busy holiday. Fourth of July weekend may be the busiest weekend for Missouri and Illinois lakes and rivers. Again, be sure there are sober adults supervising children and children should wear life vests on lakes and rivers.
Boating accident numbers also generally increase over the Independence holiday weekend and frequently they involve alcohol.
If You Are Injured in a Motor Vehicle Crash…….
As motor vehicle incidents increase over the holiday, it is crucial that you drive defensively and only drive sober. If you are involved in a motor vehicle crash and are injured, you will most likely need an attorney. At the very least, you should contact an expert car crash attorney before you contact the insurance companies.
Our attorneys are available seven days a week, including this busy holiday weekend.