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Cleveland County Sheriff Alan Norman offers July 4th safety tips

With the approach of the July 4th weekend, Sheriff Alan Norman asks all citizens to join him in making this Fourth of July holiday period a happy and enjoyable one for all.
Traditionally during the July 4th Holiday, our highways experience one of the highest traffic flows of the year. The Sheriff reminds all Cleveland County residents to follow these safety tips:
•Always shift your attention every few seconds, constantly scanning the road ahead and behind you. Never blankly stare ahead nor fix your gaze on one point on the road.
•When passing an automobile, always glance at the ground beside the front wheel of the car you intend to pass. You will know instantly if the car is about to veer - giving you an extra few seconds to respond.
• You should pull out into the opposite lane of traffic when passing while you are still well behind the car in front. This should give you some time and space to build up speed and will enable you to pull back into your own lane should the need arise. Never cut abruptly out of your lane into the opposite lane when passing.
• Always signal your intentions with your brake lights, turn signals, horn and/or headlights so that other drivers will see you well before you change course.
• Drivers should always "aim high" in steering. That is, you should glance frequently at points well ahead of you. Not only will this help your steering, but it will also help you check the position of vehicles in front of you as well as on-coming ones.
• Never follow too close. Remember that, as your speed increases, it takes you substantially longer to stop. Also remember that it's good to have an extra cushion of space in front of you if you're being tail-gated, on a slippery road, or in low visibility conditions.
"I would like to remind all motorists to practice the Golden Rule when driving. Be courteous and tolerant of other drivers. Please don't get angry with bad drivers or reckless ones - just get out of their way," Sheriff Norman said.
Sheriff Norman also wants citizens to use caution when swimming at a pool. Sheriff Norman said, "Sadly, most deaths from drowning occur within a few feet of safety." The best thing anyone can do to stay safe in and around the water is to learn to swim. The Red Cross has swimming courses for people of any age and swimming ability. To find out where lessons are offered, or to enroll in a CPR/AED or first aid course, contact your local Red Cross chapter.
At a swimming pool, take the following precautions:
• If no lifeguard is on duty, do not let children swim unless they are accompanied by a responsible adult who knows lifesaving techniques and first aid.
• Post CPR instructions and directions to call 9-1-1 or your local emergency number in the pool area.
• Look around the pool area to be certain lifesaving devices are readily available for emergency use.
• Be sure covers are installed on all drains of a swimming pool or in a wading pool. The suction created by the pool's circulating pumps can be very dangerous unless it is reduced by covers.
• Take frequent breaks (about once an hour) where everyone gets out of the water, drinks water, reapplies water resistant sunscreen (SPF 30 or higher) and rests.
• If a child is missing, check the pool first. Go to the edge of the pool and scan the entire pool, bottom, and surface, as well as the surrounding pool area.
• To reduce the risk of eye, ear, nose or throat infection from contaminated water, swim only in pools in which water quality is properly maintained. The water should appear crystal clear, be continuously circulated and be maintained at a level that allows free overflow into the gutter or skimmer. There should not be a strong odor of ammonia or chlorine.
In closing, Sheriff Norman said "Let's make this summer a safe and enjoyable one".
Submitted by Lisa Poteat


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