Enjoy a Safe and Happy 4th of July
Published on July 2, 2021
The Independence Day holiday weekend is upon us, and with little rain in the forecast and fewer COVID-19 precautions in place, Southern Nevadans are likely to be spending more time outdoors and in larger groups. The Health District encourages everyone to take the following steps to remain safe and healthy this weekend and throughout the summer months.
Limit the Spread of COVID-19 at Gatherings
Don’t spread the virus this weekend at your family picnic. If you are unvaccinated, continue wearing masks in public places and in gatherings with unvaccinated friends and family members and also maintain a safe social distance both indoors and outdoors. Everyone should continue to wash their hands frequently, especially after they have been in a public place, after blowing their noses, coughing or sneezing, and before eating.
Stay Cool and Avoid Heat-related Illness
Temperatures will be over 100° this weekend throughout Clark County. Reduce the risk of heat exhaustion and heat stroke by avoiding direct sunlight, wearing lightweight and light-colored clothing, taking cool showers or baths, taking breaks in the shade and finding an air-conditioned shelter if necessary. Stay hydrated by drinking more fluids and don’t wait until you are thirsty to drink water. Avoid alcohol and sugary drinks, as they can lead to dehydration.
Be a Water Watcher
In Clark County, most drownings occur among children ages 1-4 years, primarily in residential pools. It only takes a matter of seconds to drown but pledging to do the following will help reduce the risk of tragedy occurring: Patrol — Designate an adult to actively watch children in the water and teach children to get out of the water if a supervising adult leaves the pool area. Protect — Install four-sided pool fencing, door alarms, locks and other safety measures to provide defensive barriers between your child and the pool. Prepare — Create a plan ahead of time by enrolling your child in swimming lessons, taking CPR classes and ensuring every Water Watcher knows how to call 9-1-1 in case of an emergency.
Safe and Sane Fireworks
Only fireworks labeled as “safe and sane” are allowed to be used in Clark County between June 28 and July 4. These include sparklers and fireworks that keep to a small, circular area on the ground and do not explode in the air. Illegal fireworks include firecrackers, Roman candles and sky rockets, which are all highly combustible and of great concern during the spring and summer months when the threat of wildland fire is highest in Southern Nevada. To register a complaint about illegal fireworks being used, file a report online at www.ispyfireworks.com instead of calling 911 or 311. If you’ll be shooting off fireworks at your own 4th of July celebration, have a bucket of water, a garden hose and/or a fire extinguisher handy in case of a fire. Once your spent fireworks have cooled, use a shovel to collect them and place them into a bucket of water. The next morning, soaked fireworks can be put into a garbage bag and placed into your regular trash bin — not the recycling bin. If you have “dud” fireworks, wait at least 20 minutes before collecting and disposing of them following the above guidelines.
Practice Safe Grilling
Warmer temperatures in the summer months can lead to food poisoning. To help keep yourself and your family healthy, separate meats, poultry and seafood from other food while shopping and before grilling. Chill meats, poultry and seafood at 40°F or below until you’re ready to grill. Wash your hands before and after handling these foods and also wash surfaces and utensils both before and after cooking. Clean the grill surface before cooking and be sure no bristles are left on the grill surface if you use a wire bristle brush. Don’t cross-contaminate. Throw out marinades that have touched raw meat and use clean utensils and plates for cooked meat. Use a food thermometer to ensure meats, poultry and seafood are cooked to a safe internal temperature before serving.
Fight the Bite
Yes, there are mosquitos in Clark County, and they can transmit such viruses as West Nile and Zika. Slow their spread by eliminating standing water around your home, including non-circulating ponds, “green” swimming pools and accumulated sprinkler run-off. Tip and toss planters, buckets, tires and items where water may accumulate. Prevent transmission of disease through mosquito bites by using Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-registered insect repellants containing DEET, Picaridin, IR3535, oil of lemon eucalyptus (OLE) or 2-undecanone. When outdoors, wearing pants and long-sleeved shirts can reduce mosquito exposure. If you discover mosquito activity in your neighborhood, report it to the Health District’s Mosquito Surveillance Program at (702) 733-9800.
Updated on: August 20, 2021