Greenwich Fire Department Seeking Volunteers and Safety Advice
GREENWICH FIRE DEPARTMENT OFFERS SPRING AND SUMMER RECREATION SAFETY ADVICE
Now that the spring weather has finally arrived, it’s time to get outside and get active. In Connecticut, that means exploring the state’s various trails and waterways. While it’s easy to think of local firefighters as the men and women who rush to the scene of burning buildings and car accidents, volunteer firefighters train to operate search and rescue incidents as well and are frequently called upon when hikers are stranded and boaters and swimmers are missing. With the hope of preventing the need for such rescue missions, the Greenwich Fire Department is sharing some basic trail and waterway safety information.
“Getting outside on a beautiful warm, sunny day for a hike or a day on the water is a great way to spend time with friends and family and make wonderful memories,” says Greenwich Volunteer Firefighter Recruitment & Retention Coordinator Brian M. Kelly. “Yet, so often those memories quickly turn sad or even tragic when appropriate planning and proper precautions are ignored.”
When it comes to hiking, the American Hiking Society offers advice that falls into three categories:
Packing: The American Hiking Society’s website offers a list of 10 essentials when going on a hike – it includes appropriate footwear, a map and compass or GPS, water, food, extra clothing, safety items (fire, light, whistle), first aid kit, knife, sunscreen, and a backpack.
Planning: Before leaving for a hike, let someone know where you are going and when you expect to return. Look at a map before starting out.
Stay “Found”: Know how to use maps, compasses, and GPS and pay attention to trails. Should you become lost, make sure others can find you. Don’t panic – if you have prepared for your trip, you have everything you need and someone will know to look for you. Don’t wander – unless you are in danger, stay put so rescuers can find you.
Also with COVID 19 make sure your stay at least 6 feet away and follow all the universal precautions to protect yourself (mask, hand sanitizer, etc.). See State of CT Website for up to date information to stay safe, https://portal.ct.gov/Coronavirus
On waterways, whether swimming or boating, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) offers the following advice:
- Know how to swim;
- Designate someone to watch swimmers – this should be an adult who can swim, knows CPR, and isn’t going to read, look at devices, or otherwise be distracted;
- Avoid strong currents;
- Wear life jackets;
- Avoid alcohol while swimming, boating, and supervising children;
- Take a formal boating safety course; and
- Know the weather forecast.