How to “Insure” a Safe Summer
Summer traditions are only fun if you take the proper precautions. Check our guide.
Summer is here (fingers crossed) and with it, the return of some of our favorite traditions. Being affectionately known as the “City of Festivals” means that those of us in Milwaukee know how to celebrate during the three months of nice weather.
As you prepare for your upcoming fest, farmer’s market or camping, cookout or concert, West Bend wants to share a collection of safety tips that can help you, your family, pets, and others enjoy the summer season.
For Urban Milwaukeeans:
- Avoid sharing picnic food. Summer picnics are nice ways to enjoy time with family and friends. If you have pets, they can become professional beggars. To keep them healthy, don’t share food with them. Excessive fats can lead to GI upset or even life-threatening pancreatitis. Serious intestinal damage, obstruction, or perforation can result from eating corncobs or meat bones.
- Cuddle them during the storms. If your pets are scared during summer storms, take them to a place in your home with no doors or windows. Playing music, turning up the TV, or turning on a fan may drown out some of the noise. If these tips don’t work, talk to your local veterinarian about medication that can calm their nerves or consider purchasing a ThunderShirt.
Fire Pit Safety
- Learn your local rules. Within the greater Milwaukee area, many municipalities have ordinances about fire pit use. Before you light a fire or go about a major landscaping project to build a permanent pit, make sure you research your local rules and regulations.
- Check your local weather forecast. Before lighting your fire, check out your weather app for an hour-by-hour forecast for your area. If the wind picks up, your friendly fire can get out of control quickly, sending sparks everywhere. The last thing you want is for those sparks to start your home or a neighbor’s home on fire.
- Understand what type of wood to burn. Never burn wood from an old remodel project that’s stored in your garage. Some of it may be treated with chemicals that shouldn’t be inhaled. Woods that are hard and dense create longer lasting fires and should be used. These include oak, hickory, and ash. Soft woods, like pine, can crackle and pop, throwing sparks outside the fire pit.
- Let it be. Portable fire pits are popular, partly because they can be moved and stored after each use. Hard wood produces hotter coals which means it will take longer for your fire pit to cool down. If the pit is moved near a house or garage too soon, the heat can cause the siding to melt or even start a fire. Leave the portable fire pit where it is and move it back to its storage space the following day.
Summer Driving Safety
- Be aware. Summer in Wisconsin also means more road construction, more pedestrians, bikers and motorcyclists, and more teens on the road than any other time of year.
- Be informed. The site of orange construction barrels can be frustrating, especially if you’re running behind for that 8:00am meeting. To stay safe on the road and to avoid this frustration, be aware of road construction projects in your area. Follow your state’s construction projects by visiting your Department of Transportation’s website.
- Be safe. Car accidents are the leading cause of death for teen drivers, and unfortunately, the 100 deadliest days for teen drivers fall between Memorial Day and Labor Day.
If you have a new teen driver, you may want to send them to Road America’s Teen Driving School. Sponsored by West Bend, this hands-on class teaches driving techniques not taught in regular driver’s education. Participants will practice collision avoidance techniques that include emergency lane changes, braking, skid control and other fundamental car control drills.
To learn more, visit http://www.roadamerica.com/experiences/driving-school/teen-driving.html.
Other summer safety posts from West Bend Cares Blog:
- Protect your home from theft this summer
- Sunblock for Your Home: What You Need to Know About Sun Bleaching
- Eleven tips to save on your utility bills this summer
- Celebrate America’s birthday safely
For more summer safety tips or to be connected with an agent, visit thesilverlining.com.