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Although it is National Picnic Month, this year any picnic you have will be different. Perhaps you might gather with your family in your own backyard or in a park socially-distant from anyone else, or perhaps an indoor picnic. Either way, these picnic rules apply.
When it is time to attend a picnic, everyone thinks about the good times they will have. No one is thinking about the safety factors involved. At your next picnic, consider these issues so that everyone has a great time without incident or injury.
- Check out the facilities where the picnic will be held. Is there a grill, ample trashcans, bathrooms, and decent shelters? Some shelters have bathrooms nearby or within the shelter, if it is a large one. No one wants to run halfway across the park to locate a bathroom for their five-year-old child. Know the place you will be using before you get there when possible.
- Even if the weather is not hot, the sun can burn the skin of kids and adults playing or grilling. Be sure that everyone has a good layer of sunscreen on to protect them all day. Waterproof sunscreen works best in the presence of sweat so protection isn’t compromised. Don’t forget to bring along hats and sunglasses as well.
- Completely clean coolers before filling them with ice. The ice cooling the drinks may be used to keep drinks cold in cups. As the ice melts, drain it into empty containers or cups for ice cold drinking water instead of buying bottled water.
- Don’t forget the insect repellant. Check labels to make sure it is safe for kids if they will be attending the picnic. Avoid the eyes and other mucous membranes when spraying or rubbing it on the skin and reapply as needed to keep those nasty buggers away.
- Have adequate refrigeration for cold foods and raw meat. The night before the picnic, refrigerate all raw meats and anything that will need to maintain a cool temperature at the picnic. Move them directly from the refrigerator to a cooler full of ice. Dump the ice from the raw food cooler once the food has been prepared so no one mistakes it for ice to be used in their drink.
- Cover all foods on the picnic table. It is easy for a fly or other insect to crawl or fly into the macaroni salad or land on the chicken when no one is looking. Use aluminum foil or plastic wrap and keep your food safe from these unwanted guests.
- Bring hand sanitizer and a jug of water for hand washing and cleanup. Hand sanitizer works best when hands aren’t visibly soiled. Use water to rinse off dirt and grime, dry, and then cover hands will a generous dollop of hand sanitizer. The water can be used to cool off hot coals when grilling is complete as well.
- Throw away any mayonnaise or milk based dish that has been sitting out for more than an hour. In the heat, it doesn’t take long for these types of foods to go bad. Really, any dish that needs to be served cold should be gotten rid of after meal time as well.
When you remember these and other picnic safety rules, you’re in for a day full of fun and protection for everyone who attends.
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This article provides general information and discussion about health and related subjects. The information and other content provided in this article, or in any linked materials, are not intended and should not be construed as medical advice. Consult your own physician for any medical issues that you may be having.