MANILA, Philippines – Are you planning to go outdoors to make the most out of the summer heat?
You may want to be extra careful. According to the Philippine Red Cross, common risks associated with out-of-town summer trips include health conditions such as dehydration and heat stroke, to accidents such as fires.
In a statement, the organization listed these tried and tested ways on how to address conditions and accidents usually experienced during summer:
- Make the casualty sit down. Reassure him or her that things will be okay.
- Give plenty of fluids to drink. Water is usually sufficient, but oral rehydration solutions can help with salt replacement.
- Monitor and record the casualty’s condition. If he remains unwell, seek medical advice straight away.
- Move the casualty to a cooler place or any shaded area. Take off the outer clothing.
- Help the casualty sit down; support him or her with cushions.
- Wrap him or her in a cold, wet sheet until body temperature falls to 38 degrees Celsius, or is warm enough to touch.
- Keep the sheet wet by continually pouring cold water into it. Fan the casualty or give cold water using a sponge.
- Replace the wet sheet with a dry one once the casualty’s body temperature has returned to normal.
- Monitor and record any vital signs (level of response, breathing, pulse, and temperature) while waiting for help.
- If the casualty’s temperature rises again, repeat the cooling process. If the condition worsens, call an ambulance.
- Cover the casualty’s skin with light clothing. A towel with soft fabric will do.
- Move the person out of the sun and make him or her sip cold water.
- Dab cold water on the affected skin. If damage is extensive, soak the affected area in a cold bath for ten minutes, then seek medical advice.
- For mild cases of sunburn, apply calamine lotion or any after-sun creams to soothe the skin.
- Advise the casualty to stay indoors or in a shaded area.
- Let the victim lie on his or her left side.
- Monitor his ABCs – airway, breathing and circulation.
- Never throw away the food which caused the poisoning. Take a sample of it and the victim’s vomit for analysis.
- Call the Bureau of Fire Protection at once for help. In the meantime, use a fire extinguisher if it is available in the area.
- Do not attempt to enter the fire area to collect personal items. Wait until the area is cleared by the fire safety officer.
- Do not use the elevator.
- Do not attempt to move things that are on fire.
- Do not smother the flame with flammable materials.
- Never attempt to fight a fire if it would endanger your life.
- If your clothes catch fire, stop, drop and roll. Do not run.
- Do not douse water on any electrical source of fire. Instead, pull the plug on the main switch.
DENR chief: Be ‘nature-friendly’ this summer
Meanwhile, a government official reminded Filipinos to be more mindful of the impact of their activities to the environment as they go to beaches and other tourist attractions this summer.
Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Secretary Ramon Paje made the statement as Filipinos are expected to enjoy the approaching long weekend from April 5 (Maundy Thursday) to April 9 (Araw ng Kagitingan).
“Remember that where your are and what you are enjoying, from the top of the mountain to the depths of the sea, all are part of God’s creation, and there are those who actually lost their lives to protect it. Make sure, therefore, that what you do is neither destructive nor extractive so that our natural resources will still be available for future generations to experience,” Paje said in a separate statement.
The DENR chief also suggested ways to be more “nature-friendly” this summer:
- Reduce waste and utilize reusable containers instead of single-use disposable plastic bags. Learn handicrafts that creatively recycle waste material into something useful.
- Conserve water so as not to deplete fresh water resources.
- Have vehicles fine-tuned for fuel efficiency and to reduce air pollution.
- Ride a bike or take leisure walks not only for the exercise but to better appreciate surroundings.
- Organize or participate in environmental activities such as seed collection, tree potting or nurturing, as well as cleanup activities especially along waterways and coastlines.
“Respect for nature and what it offers us transcends religious beliefs and cultural traditions. The natural resources we are enjoying now are only borrowed from our grandchildren. And it is, therefore, our duty to protect them,” Paje said.