California is home to beautiful mountain ranges, lush valleys, inviting trails and campgrounds.
However, don’t let a fun day spent outdoors turn into an emergency! The California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES) encourages all Californians to prepare before they head outside.
Summer is the time to be outdoors exploring the mountains, trails, and parks, but you may not be alone. Ticks and snakes thrive in the warm weather, Cal OES would like everyone to know their risks and how to prevent them.
Ticks can be found in parks, trails, the forest or anywhere with tall grass. Tips to help prevent a tick bite can be simple:
- Wear insect repellent that states ticks.
- Keep ticks away from exposed skin by wearing long clothing, tucking your pants into your shoes, and tucking your long sleeve shirts into your pants.
- Wear light colored clothing to easily spot a tick on your clothes.
In addition to protecting yourself, make sure your pets are also protected.
- Making sure your pets stay away from tall grass or weeds
- Using a pet friendly repellant
- Checking your pet after being outdoors.
Snakes can be found outdoors in the same places that you may be exploring. Tips to help prevent a snake bite can be simple:
- Watch where you step especially if you are walking on rocks or are unable to see the ground.
- Wear protective clothing and shoes.
- If outside at night, use a flashlight on your path.
- Be aware, California is home to nearly 50 native snake species, including 7 species of rattlesnake
- When taking pets outdoors, make sure your pets are always on a leash and visible. Snakes can hide under rocks and your pet may not notice them while they’re exploring.
MAKE A PLAN
It’s important to plan before you leave your home. Know the route you’re going to take and how long you plan to be gone.
Tell a responsible person back at home your plans and what time you anticipate you’ll be home. If you don’t come back after a reasonable amount of time, that person can notify local authorities and provide them with details of the area you went to. Especially if you’re in low or no cell reception areas, letting someone else know your plans is important in case you need to be rescued.
Even if your outdoor plans involve only being gone a few hours, packing some extra resources, including food, water, and clothing, can help you be prepared for any situation.
Packing extra water, food, battery packs and a map can help keep a bad situation from turning into an emergency or deadly situation. Cal OES wants to ensure everyone returns home safely and being prepared is an essential step.
CHECK THE WEATHER
Weather during the summer can be excessive and extreme, so it’s best to know when it’s too hot to recreate outside. Checking the weather for the day of your trip ensures you know what clothing to wear, how hot it is expected to be and what additional supplies you may need. It’s also a good idea to check the weather for the following day and pack accordingly. Should you get stuck outside overnight, you’ll be prepared with additional resources to sustain yourself until help arrives.
California summers can be full of fun, adventures, and great memories, but being safe and prepared is the goal for all Californians.
For more safety tips: