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101 Critical Days: Hot fun in the summer

TINKER AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. -- The weather is really starting to heat up for most of us and that means all our outdoor activities can get into full swing. Being outdoors in the summer is relaxing, fun and revitalizing if you plan well and are always prepared. Applying risk management techniques to all situations can save a lot of pain in the long run.

Sunburn, heatstroke and other heat-related illnesses may not cause a fatality, but can certainly cause lost work days and hours of pain. A simple, effective way to prepare is by having a list of necessities for all your activities. You wouldn't go to play tennis without a racket; it would be the same if you went to the beach without sunscreen. Is hiking your passion? You'll need sunscreen for this also, not to mention extra water and proper foot gear. There are websites available for all imaginable activities, be sure to check these out before you set out on your next adventure:

· www.mayoclinic.com/health/ first-aid-heatstroke/FA00019
· www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ ency/article/000056.htm
· www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ ency/article/003227.htm
· www.webmd.com/skin-problems-and-treatments/tc/sunburn-prevention
· www.active.com/fitness/Articles/ 8_Tips_for_Exercising_in_Summer_Heat
· www.mayoclinic.com/health/ exercise/HQ00316

Another hot time for everyone during the summer season is barbecuing. Who doesn't love the smell and taste of food from a grill? When you're getting ready to grill for the first time, start with grill maintenance. Check your owner's manual and the manufacturer's website for the specifics on your equipment, but for general guidelines, you can visit the websites listed below.

· www.nfpa.org/itemDetail.asp? categoryID=298&itemID=18346&URL=Research%20&%20Reports/Fact%20sheets/Seasonal%20safety/Grilling&cookie%5Ftest=1
· www.usfa.fema.gov/citizens/home _fire_prev/holiday-seasonal/summer.shtm
· http://bbq.about.com/od/gasgrills/ a/Gas-Grill-Maintenance.htm
· www.cbsnews.com/2100-3480_162-20062896.html
·www.nfpa.org/itemDetail.asp? categoryID=1714&itemID=41221&URL=Safety%20Information/For%20consumers/Outdoors/Grilling/Grilling%20safety%20tips