Safety and first aid tips

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Updated: 4/18/2007 10:42 am Published: 4/18/2007 10:42 am

There are many things to consider when planning a hiking or camping trip, but safety is the primary focus of any expedition. In all cases, carrying a first aid kit is a necessity. The contents of your kit may vary, depending on where you’re going and how many people are traveling in your group. If you plan to hike or camp in a remote area, the more prepared you should be for a medical emergency. A variety of first aid kits are available for day hikes, family hiking trips, or backpacking treks. No matter what kind of trip you’re taking, all kits should be tailored to the terrain, weather, the ages of hikers, and your group’s special medical needs. Knowing how to use everything in your first aid kit beforehand is important since you may have little time to read an instruction manual during an actual emergency. Some of the main contents of your first aid kit should include a first aid manual; insect repellant; a variety of bandages; medications such as aspirin, eye drops, antiseptic wipes, sunscreen and snake bite kits; scissors; tape; matches; and an emergency blanket. Good first aid kits are available in a wide range of prices and specialty kits are available for specific outdoors activities. Learning about possible hazards at your destination, such as poisonous plants, snakes, and insects can help you prevent many unwanted injuries. You may also want to ask park rangers what special gear or clothing might be needed for you trip. Some organizations offer wilderness first aid courses targeted to outdoors enthusiasts.

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