Safety tips for outdoor activities

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Welcome the unofficial start to summer this Victoria Day. If
you’re firing up your barbecue or going away for the weekend, the CSA
group – an organization that tests the safety and credibility of
everyday products – offers some suggestions to keep you safe all summer
long. 
“We
want families to have a good long weekend and enjoy the summer, but we
also want them to stay mindful of some safety hazards,“ said Anthony
Toderian, a representative for the CSA group. 

Using gas grills and barbecues:

  • Keep things clean.
    Check if your grill is clean of any blockages from grease, insects or
    rust build-up before you fire it up. Inspect the burners and burner
    tubes. Clean or replace any blocked parts. 
  • Check for leaks.
    Rub a 50/50 solution of soap and water onto the gas hose, fittings and
    connections. Turn on the gas at the tank, not the burners. If there are
    any leaks, it will produce bubbles. Try tightening the fittings, if that
    doesn’t work you should replace any damaged hoses or fittings. 
  • Check your gas.
    Check the date stamp on the propane cylinders to see when it was last
    qualified. These cylinders must be inspected and requalified every 10
    years. Also, avoid using a rusty or damaged cylinder.
  • Be aware of your surroundings. Keep grills and barbecues away from combustible materials like fences, trees and buildings. 
  • Always buy certified.
    Look for a seal of approval from a credible certification agency when
    buying a grill or a barbecue. The mark indicates that the product meets
    national standards. 
  • Be mindful of kids. Educate your children about possible hazards when operating hot equipment. 

Camping stoves and lanterns: 

  • Stay three metres from the tent.
    Camping equipment like lanterns, stoves and outdoor cookers should be
    lit at least three metres away from the tent or any vehicles. Never
    light a stove or lantern inside a tent or a vehicle. 
  • Use in open spaces. Only use lanterns or stoves in a well-ventilated area. 
  • Stay away from the flame.
    Don’t wear loose, flammable clothing when using any fuel-burning
    equipment. Keep kids and pets away from the flame. Wait for the
    equipment to cool before you pack it away. 

Boats and cottages: 

  • Stay boat smart. Wear a life jacket or some type of flotation device when using a boat. 
  • Check your alarms. Test the carbon monoxide and smoke alarms in your cottage or boat to see whether it’s been properly installed. 
  • Check for pests. The first time you go to your cottage for the summer, inspect all your appliances for damage from rodents and insects. 
  • Be prepared.
    Keep your boats and cottages stocked up with safety equipment such as
    first aid kits and fire extinguishers, in case of an emergency.