Ziphers - summer safety outdoors with Debbie Mercer
Embrace the Outdoors: Essential Tips for Summer Safety

We are almost halfway through summer and as much fun as you're hopefully having galavanting around the world, it's important to remember that enjoying the great outdoors comes with responsibilities. You don't want to ruin your adventures because you forgot to shake your shoes before putting them on in case of any poisonous creepy crawlers.

Summer is a season filled with outdoor activities, whether it's hiking, swimming, or simply having a picnic. If you're in Texas right now, we know the only picnics you're having are indoors in the comfort of a high-powered AC building. Regardless, it's crucial to prioritize safety while indulging in these summer adventures. Let's explore essential tips and precautions to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience while embracing the beauty of nature.

Ziphers - summer safety outdoors


One of the most crucial aspects of summer safety is maintaining proper hydration. Higher temperatures and increased physical activity can lead to dehydration. Carry a reusable water bottle and drink water regularly, even if you don't feel thirsty. Avoid excessive consumption of alcohol and caffeinated beverages as they can further dehydrate your body.


The sun's rays can be both enjoyable and harmful. Protect your skin from harmful UV radiation by applying sunscreen with a high SPF before heading outdoors. Reapply it every two hours or more frequently if you're sweating or swimming. Don't forget to wear a wide-brimmed hat, sunglasses, and lightweight, breathable clothing that covers your arms and legs. Seek shade during the hottest hours of the day, usually between 10 am and 4 pm.


Bugs and insects are a common part of the outdoor experience (yay?), but some can pose health risks. To protect yourself from mosquito-borne diseases such as West Nile virus and tick-borne illnesses like Lyme disease, use insect repellent containing DEET or Picaridin. Wear long sleeves and pants when hiking in wooded areas and check yourself thoroughly for ticks after spending time outdoors.

Ziphers - summer safety outdoors


Hot summer days can lead to heat exhaustion and heatstroke if proper precautions aren't taken. Recognize the signs of heat-related illnesses, including dizziness, fatigue, nausea, rapid heartbeat, and excessive sweating. Stay cool by seeking shade, wearing lightweight and breathable clothing, and using cooling towels or misting fans. If you or someone else experiences severe symptoms, such as confusion or loss of consciousness, seek medical attention immediately.


Swimming and water activities are synonymous with summer, but practicing water safety is crucial. Swim only in designated areas with a lifeguard present and follow their instructions. If you're swimming in natural bodies of water, such as lakes or rivers, be aware of any potential hazards, including currents, underwater obstructions, or sudden drop-offs. Never swim alone; ensure that weak swimmers or children wear appropriate flotation devices.


Whether you're hiking, camping, or engaging in other outdoor activities, proper preparation is key. Research your destination, be aware of weather conditions, and inform someone about your plans and expected return time. Pack essential supplies such as a first aid kit, sufficient water and food, appropriate footwear, insect repellent, and navigation tools. Dress in layers to accommodate changing temperatures and always respect the environment by leaving no trace.

Ziphers - summer safety outdoors


Lastly, always be aware of your surroundings and exercise caution during outdoor activities. This is a tip that should be practiced all year round. Watch out for uneven terrain, slippery surfaces, or potential hazards such as wildlife or falling branches. Stay on marked trails and follow safety guidelines and regulations specific to your chosen activity. Let people know when and where you're going and when you expect to be done. You can prevent accidents and ensure a safer outdoor experience by remaining alert and mindful.

Summer is a time to embrace the beauty of nature and enjoy outdoor adventures. By following these essential tips for summer safety, you can minimize risks and make the most of your outdoor escapades. 
June 23, 2023 — Debbie Mercer

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