ACEP: American College of Emergency Physicians
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Holiday & Seasonal Safety
Always camp with at least one companion. Let someone know where you will be camping or hiking, and your itinerary. Include such details as the year, make and license plate of your car; the equipment you are bringing; and when you plan to return.
Take appropriate camping equipment and supplies, including a complete first aid kit and emergency signaling devices. Make sure you have the skills you need (e.g., ability to read a compass, erect a temporary shelter, give first aid).
Bring a compass, map and other hiking aids with you when going on extended hikes or when hiking in unfamiliar terrain; use trail markers if lost.
Know ahead of time the location of the nearest telephone or ranger station in case of an emergency. Bring a well-charged cell phone, if possible (but be aware that cell phone service may not be available in many wilderness or mountainous areas).
Be prepared for changes in the weather and wear multi-layered clothing made of polypropylene, wool and cotton. Protect against rain and wind by bringing breathable, lightweight waterproof jackets and pants.
Dress children in brightly colored clothes to increase visibility.
Take along plenty of bottled water or have a reliable method of water purification (such as purification tablets).
Handle and cook food properly. Pack well-wrapped food in insulated coolers. Once cooked, eat food within a two-hour time period and return leftovers to the coolers.
Follow all camp regulations, especially guidelines about campfires and wildlife.
Never feed bears or other wild animals.
Be cautious when exploring, chopping wood or building fires.
Use insect repellent as directed and beware of wilderness dangers, including poison oak, sumac and ivy.
Follow these precautions to prevent tick-related illnesses such as
or Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever:
Wear long-sleeved shirts, long pants and shoes instead of sandals.
Use insect repellent that includes DEET
Check every day for ticks, chiggers and other insects.
If you spot an insect, gently remove it with tweezers by grabbing the tick by the head, not by the body. Swab the bite with rubbing alcohol.
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