Hot Car Safety Tips

As many of us hit the road to travel this summer, or just to head to work or school, we might enjoy the sunshine and its accompanying warmth! Summer heat, however, adds an extra layer of complications to our drives. As temperatures rise, so do risks of accident and injury as it relates to the vehicle, passengers and pets in the car. Take a look at these hot car risks as well as safety tips for avoiding these situations.

Complete Routine Maintenance Checks

Scheduling routine checks for the vehicle could help lower the chances of having a heat-related car breakdown. Check out the air conditioner, radiator/cooling system, belts, hoses and oil and replace or repair them if needed. Don’t forget about the tires – fill up the tires and the spare to the right air pressure level. Driving under-inflated tires can cause them to overheat easier and that can increase the chance of a blowout. 

Keep Your Vehicle Cool  

The vehicle interior of a parked car can heat up quickly, posing some dangers to your health when you first re-enter it. Take care when entering the car to avoid touching the steering wheel and seats until the surfaces have cooled down. Consider installing seat covers, steering wheel cover, permanent window tint, or windshield sun shades to help block the sun’s rays. These items could help keep your car cool and protect the interior. 

Never Leave A Child or Animal Unattended

If you’re running errands with a child or animal in tow, avoid leaving them in the car, even for a short period of time. Instead, consider using drive-thru services or curbside pickup. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, a car’s interior temperature could rise 20 degrees in approximately 10 minutes. Even leaving the windows cracked or rolled down does not slow the heat acceleration. 

Prepare an Emergency Kit

Even if you’ve prepared your vehicle for summer travel, it never hurts to have a “just in case” kit in your trunk. Fill it with items like water, sunscreen, non-perishable foods/snacks, jumper cables, road flares, flashlight, first aid kit and more. 

Incorporating these tips can help keep you cool on the hot, sunny days in Oklahoma. While you follow these tips, also remember we offer auto insurance to protect you on your journey. Contact an OKFB agent to discuss your auto needs or current policy – you may be eligible for our roadside assistance policy addition. 

Farming Safely in the Heat

The heat of summer can be a busy time for many farming and ranching operations. As you work in the heat and sun, follow these heat safety tips to help ward off heat-related illnesses and injuries for you and your team. Farming and ranching are important, and we want to help you stay safe doing what you do best.

Wear Protective Clothing

When working outdoors in warm climates, OSHA recommends wearing light-colored, loose-fitting and breathable clothing. Additionally, covering up by wearing long-sleeved shirts and long pants can help protect you from the sun’s harmful rays. Wearing a wide-brim hat and sunglasses that block 99% to 100% UVA and UVB radiation could also protect your face and eyes while working. 

Take Breaks

Taking 15-minute breaks in a cool, shady area at least every two hours while working can help decrease the risk of heat-related illness and fatigue. You could use an outbuilding nearby or the air-conditioned cab of your truck. It could also be helpful to schedule strenuous and demanding tasks in the early morning hours or late evening hours, when the temperature isn’t at its hottest. 

Don’t Forget to Fuel-up

Remember to take time during your workday to drink water and eat sustaining foods/snacks. The CDC recommends drinking one cup of water for every 15 to 20 minutes of moderate activity. Ensuring you’re hydrated throughout the day could lower your risk of heat exhaustion, and it can power you up to continue safely getting work done. As for snacks, consider having fresh fruits, vegetables and salted items to help boost energy and balance electrolytes. 

Know the Symptoms

It is important to know the symptoms and warning signs of heat-related illnesses. You should seek medical attention if you or one of your employees are experiencing these symptoms:

  • Heat exhaustion: This occurs when the body is becoming dehydrated. Some symptoms include profuse sweating, shallow breathing, muscle cramps, irritability, feeling faint or dizzy.
  • Heatstroke: This occurs when the body cannot control its internal temperature and is unable to cool down. Some symptoms include the absence of sweating, pulsating headache, difficulty breathing, lethargy, lack of coordination, unconsciousness, nausea or vomiting.

While you’re working hard and looking out for the health of you and your team by using these heat safety tips, we can help by providing coverage for your farm or ranch. Let us take care of the unexpected and help protect your livelihood with our Farm & Ranch Insurance.

Contact an OKFB agent to discuss your farm and ranch needs.