Safety First: Labor Day Safety Tips to Help You Close Out Summer Safely

As summer comes to an end, the first Monday of September marks a significant holiday in the United States – Labor Day.

What began as a national tribute to American workers has evolved into a long, fun-filled weekend for many. Labor Day celebrations often include parades, barbecues, pool and beach time, and more. But like any other busy holiday, safety should always be a top priority.

Whether your plans include boating, swimming, grilling, drinking, or simply enjoying the last days of summer outside, it’s important to keep these Labor Day safety tips in mind.

Heat Safety

It’s easy to become dehydrated when you’re spending extra time in the sun. As we experience record-breaking temperatures, protecting yourself from the heat has never been more critical.

Drink up

Forget 4-6 cups per day—the average man needs 15 cups of water and the average woman needs nearly 12 cups to meet their daily fluid intake. If you’re losing water through sweat, you may need even more.

Avoid drinks that contain caffeine or alcohol, which can dehydrate you even further. Don’t want to give up your Labor Day libations? For every alcoholic drink you consume, drink an equal amount of water.

Other ways to beat the heat

Stay indoors and avoid strenuous exercise during the hottest part of the day (12-4 PM). If you must be outside, wear loose-fitting, lightweight, light-colored clothing. Dark colors absorb the sun’s rays, making you feel hotter faster.

When to seek treatment

If you experience any of these dehydration warning signs, visit your nearest MD Now right away:

  • Extreme thirst
  • Dry mouth
  • Lightheadedness or dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Dark-colored urine
  • Urinating less frequently

Grilling Safety

For many people, grilling is an essential part of Labor Day weekend. You don’t have to banish the barbecue—just follow these guidelines to help avoid Labor Day accidents and burns.

  • Use long-handled utensils
  • Wear an oven mitt and a thick apron for extra protection
  • Keep your grill clean, as built-up grease can cause it to catch fire more easily
  • Never cook near overhanging tree branches or other things that could ignite

When to seek treatment

Burn treatment may include prescription creams, dressings, and more. See a doctor if your burn:

  • Covers a large portion of your body
  • Affects your airway and causes difficulty breathing
  • Affects your face, hands, feet, groin, or a major joint
  • Has characteristics of a second- or third-degree burn, such as significant blistering, darkening, or significant skin loss.

Food Safety

Picnics and parties are also part of many Labor Day celebrations, which means a greater risk of food poisoning. Symptoms like abdominal pain, nausea, diarrhea, or vomiting can quickly damper your Labor Day plans.

Follow these food safety tips to lower your chances of getting sick:

  • Always wash your hands before and after you touch raw meat
  • Never leave food that requires refrigeration (such as potato salad, coleslaw, or mayonnaise) in the sun
  • Serve any items that need to stay chilled on a pan or tray filled with ice, preferably in a shaded area
  • Return all leftovers to the refrigerator immediately
  • Do not share utensils, plates, or food with others

When to seek treatment

Visit your nearest MD Now for any food poisoning symptoms that last more than a few days. Avoid taking over-the-counter pain relievers like ibuprofen (Advil) or acetaminophen (Tylenol), which can make abdominal pain worse. You should seek treatment right away if you experience:

  • Severe pain
  • Abdominal tenderness or swelling
  • Fever
  • Bloody stools
  • Yellowish skin
  • Profuse watery or bloody diarrhea
  • Constant vomiting

Water & Sun Safety

Pools, lakes, rivers, and beaches abound here in Florida. Whatever body of water you choose to enjoy over Labor Day weekend, never swim alone—and always have someone else near you in case you become incapacitated. You should never swim under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

The same rules apply for boating. Never drive a boat under the influence, and always follow the rules of the water. Everyone on the boat should wear a life jacket, especially children.  

If you go swimming at the beach, choose one with a lifeguard on duty and be sure to stay within the designated swimming area.

Finally, it’s important to protect your skin from the sun. Wear sunscreen with 30 SPF or more and reapply it every two hours—every hour if you’re in the water.

When to seek treatment

MD Now provides sunburn treatment, including anti-inflammatory pain medications, prescription creams, and more. Visit a doctor right away if you are sunburned and:

  • Develop large blisters
  • Experience severe swelling or worsening pain
  • Show signs of infection, such as pus-filled blisters
  • Feel feverish, nauseous, or confused

MD Now Is Open on Labor Day

When life doesn’t go as planned on Labor Day, MD Now is here for you. No appointment is necessary—just walk in. MD Now also offers convenient Web Check-In® to make getting high-quality healthcare as easy and convenient as possible. Tell us when you want to come in, and you’ll receive a text message when it’s time for your visit.

About MD Now® Urgent Care

MD Now urgent care is Florida’s largest urgent care operator with more than 110  state-of-the-art clinics conveniently located across Broward, Duval, Hillsborough, Indian River, Lake, Lee, Manatee, Martin, Miami-Dade, Orange, Palm Beach, Pinellas, Saint Lucie, Sarasota, and Seminole Counties. MD Now urgent care’s physician-led team of healthcare professionals provides high-quality healthcare through a comprehensive lineup of urgent care, preventative healthcare, and occupational health services during convenient hours. MD Now urgent care is proud to be affiliated with HCA Florida Healthcare. For more information, visit