© 2024 | Jefferson Public Radio
Southern Oregon University
1250 Siskiyou Blvd.
Ashland, OR 97520
541.552.6301 | 800.782.6191
Listen | Discover | Engage a service of Southern Oregon University
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Northwest Officials Caution Safety While Doing Hot Weather Activities

<p>Families enjoy the hot weather by cooling off in the Skidmore fountain in Portland in this undated file photo.</p>

Katelyn Black

Families enjoy the hot weather by cooling off in the Skidmore fountain in Portland in this undated file photo.

Officials are warning people to be careful while participating in summer activities, especially as temperatures climb toward 90 degrees in some areas of the Northwest this weekend. 

People should be especially careful around cold rivers, said Brandon Paxton with Clackamas County Fire.  

“This time of year sort of kicks off the season for people to migrate to the water because it’s hot,” he said, “and they take for granted that it’s still sort of snowmelt and runoff that’s feeding those rivers.”

Jumping into cold, rushing water will shock a person’s system, Paxton said.  

“If you fall in unexpectantly or you jump in, with really cold water one of the first things that generally seems to happen is you take a deep breath,” he said, “and if you’re underwater, of course, you’re going to inhale that water which leads to the potential for a drowning.” 

For safety, people should never swim alone, Paxton said. People should also make sure they have properly fitting life jackets.  

People should also avoid drinking alcohol while at a lake or river, he said. 

“It just really does impair your ability,” Paxton said. “A few drownings really do relate to that.”

Another issue that comes up during the summer is young children falling out of open windows. People should open their windows a maximum of 4 inches, Paxton said.

“[Kids] take for granted that the screens are in place and can provide some level of security and safety and it just doesn’t,” he said. 

This usually applies to children under 7 years old, Paxton said.

“Typically you want to keep items or furniture, anything they can climb on, away from that window area as well,” he said. 

As outdoor activities are ramping up, Paxton reminds people to make sure they wear bike helmets and that those helmets are properly fitted and secured.

Copyright 2019 Oregon Public Broadcasting

Meerah Powell is a general assignment and breaking news reporter for OPB. She previously worked as a news reporter and podcast producer for Eugene Weekly in her hometown of Eugene, Oregon. Along with writing and audio work, Meerah also has experience with photography and videography. She graduated from the University of Oregon's School of Journalism and Communication.