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Published Tuesday 17 December 2019
Tags:General, Media Release

Safety paramount as summer heats up

Enjoying the outdoors is a great Mitchell Shire pastime, but Council is reminding residents to be vigilant this summer and remain sun and heat safe.

As the temperatures begin to rise, outdoor surfaces on playgrounds, skate park ramps, outdoor seats and barbecues can get very hot, even on days of mild temperatures. People visiting pools are also reminded of the dangers of hot surfaces, prolonged exposure to sunlight and heat as well as the need to actively supervise children in water.

When exposed to direct sunlight, surfaces may reach temperatures high enough to cause serious contact burn injuries in a matter of seconds. A child’s skin is thinner and more sensitive than an adult’s and burns can result in serious injuries.

Council is reminding adults to supervise children when they are outdoors and to test surface temperatures before allowing them to touch, climb or play on outdoor structures.

Holding your hand just above the surface may help you determine if the surface is too hot to play on. If the surface temperature is 50°C or more or you think the surface is hot, do not let your child play on or touch the surface.

Council would also like to remind residents that it is never ok to leave children or animals in a parked car, even for a very short time. On a warm day, the temperature inside a parked car can be 20°C to 30°C hotter than outside, and the impact can be fatal. The heat on ute trays can also cause death or significant injuries to animals on hot days.

Council also has a Watch Around Water Policy at all Mitchell Shire Pools, with parents and guardians responsible for the supervision of children in their care.

If you are responsible for children under five years old, you must be in the water and within reach at all times.

If you are responsible for children aged five to 10 years, you must provide direct supervision to them at all times.

It is the responsibility of parents and guardians to provide direct supervision for children. Unsupervised children of any age will be removed from the water if a lifeguard is concerned for their safety.

For more information about children’s safety, visit the KidSafe website.

Quotes attributable to Mitchell Shire Mayor Councillor David Lowe

“Many people grow up with fond memories of playing outdoors at a playground or the pool, but we must not lose sight of how important sun, heat and pool safety is.

“Over the holiday period we want everyone to have a great time and enjoy themselves but most of all a safe time.

“If you’re outside enjoying our play spaces, pools and skate parks, please take care of your safety and the safety of those in your care.

“With the hotter weather arriving, we are reminding people to take extra care in the heat and to check hot surfaces to make sure they are safe to use.

“Some people don’t realise how hot slides and playground surfaces can get. Hot surfaces can cause serious injury as can sunburn and heat exposure.

“We are also reminding people to actively supervise children in their care around water.

“While our lifeguards do a fantastic job, it is really important that parents and guardians keep a close eye on the action at our free outdoor pools this summer.

“We would also remind people to consider the impact of children and animals in cars and animals on the back of utes or being transported in other ways.”

This page was last updated on 21 May 2020.