Safety tips for an active summer
Now that summer is here, many of us are planning outside events and adventures. But even the most common outdoor activities can be risky if you go about them the wrong way. That’s why it’s important to keep safety measures in mind – no matter where you’re going or what you’re doing this summer – to prevent accidents and injuries from getting in the way of your fun.
Playgrounds have always been a magnet for kids. Whether your children love the swings, monkey bars or more modern equipment, playgrounds offer kids physical, emotional and social benefits. However, there are risks as well. Last year, over 70,000 kids between the ages of 5 and 14, and almost 35,000 between 0 and 4, were injured on playground equipment.1 One way to help prevent those injuries is to make sure the ground beneath the equipment is soft enough to absorb a fall. If you’re installing playground gear in your yard, make sure to use at least nine inches of mulch or wood chips beneath it, and avoid using concrete, asphalt or dirt.
While swimming pools can offer a much-needed refresher when temperatures are hot, there are risks to this activity as well. Over 118,000 people were injured while swimming or at a pool in 2020.1 Nearly all these injuries are preventable, if you simply follow the pool rules: No running on the deck and think twice about doing tricks off the side of the pool or diving board. Also, no diving if the water is too shallow, as 57% of all swimming pool diving accidents occur in water four feet deep or less. Only 4.8% of diving accidents happen in water that is eight feet or deeper.2
In 2020, 134% more hikers hit the trails than in 2019, with the number of hikes logged up 171%. Many of those were day hikers, just taking a quick stroll through a national park or nearby woods. But even day hikers can be at risk. In fact, in past years, 42% of all search and rescue calls were for day hikers who had gone missing – lost their way, gotten injured or both.3 Besides taking a compass and map, experts suggest planning for an overnight, even if you’re only going to hike for an hour or two. Pack a puffy coat for warmth, a big garbage bag for rain protection and a supply of water. And tell someone else where you’re going, so they can send help if you don’t come back on time.
Nearly 33% of all Americans older than 3 ride a bike, and over 50% see biking as a convenient way to get from place to place. However, 54% worry about getting hit by a car (the top source of bike injuries) and 47% say they would be more inclined to bike if bikes and cars were physically separated on different roads or paths.4 While wearing a helmet is one of the best ways to protect yourself from serious injury, staying on a bike path is also a way to reduce your chances of getting hurt. To find bike trails near you, click here.
Skateboard lovers rejoice – for the first time ever, skateboarding will be part of the 2020 Summer Olympics and the United States is sending a team. Considered one of the top 10 most popular sports in the world, skateboarding is often considered an extreme sport. However, most of the injuries – broken wrists, twisted knees, rolled ankles – can be prevented with a little caution, awareness and the right safety gear, including a skateboard helmet and wrist, elbow and knee guards.5
While trampolines can be a fun and exhilarating way to exercise, they can also be dangerous if used incorrectly. Each year, over 100,000 people are injured using a trampoline, 75% of which occur when more than one person is using the trampoline at once, and 90% of injuries happen to children. Because more than 95% of fractures from trampolines happen at home, you should take extra caution if you have a trampoline in your yard. Allow only one person at a time on the trampoline, install padding on the frame and on any landing surfaces.6
Consider financial protection from accidents, too
Accidents can happen, no matter how careful you are. That’s why accident insurance can also be an important protection for the summer and all year long. Accident insurance provides a lump-sum payment based on the type of injury and the treatment received. It will typically cover accidents that lead to broken bones, burns, hospital visits, surgery, physical therapy and x-rays. The money can be used toward anything – including paying bills other than those associated with the accident.
Learn more about Equitable’s Accident Insurance.
Equitable is the brand name of the retirement and protection subsidiaries of Equitable Holdings, Inc., including Equitable Financial Life Insurance Company (Equitable Financial) (NY, NY); Equitable Financial Life Insurance Company of America (Equitable America), an AZ stock company with main administrative headquarters in Jersey City, NJ; and Equitable Distributors, LLC. Equitable Advisors is the brand name of Equitable Advisors, LLC (member FINRA, SIPC) (Equitable Financial Advisors in MI & TN). All group insurance products are issued either by Equitable Financial or Equitable America, which have sole responsibility for their respective insurance and are backed solely by their claims-paying obligations. Some products are not available in all states.