Some safety tips during the holidays

Whether you are at home, on the road or at your holiday destination, accidents do happen, so it is best to be prepared.

Whether you are at home, on the road or at your holiday destination, accidents do happen, so it is best to be prepared.

Basil Bonner, emergency medicine specialist and head of Milnerton Medi-Clinic's emergency centre, says: "The first hour after a medical emergency is the most crucial in terms of survival and the long-term extent of injuries.

"It is vital that all members of your household, including domestic workers, know basic emergency procedures, that you keep a First Aid kit at home and in your car and that every member of the household knows how to use it."

Safety checks before leaving:


l Lock all doors and windows and activate the alarm;

l Try and make your house seem lived-in by installing a timer on certain lights (and radios if possible). Get a friend to look after your house.

Ask them to open and close your curtains every day and to regularly empty your mailbox;

l Do not make your absence known to everyone;

l Cancel newspapers;

l Don't park your vehicle in clear view of the street when leaving.


l Check tyre pressure and tread;

l Make sure the lights and brakes are in good working condition;

l Check windscreen and make sure wipers work;

l Check oil, water and windscreen cleaner. Ensure all safety belts are working.

In medical emergency:

"The most important thing is to stay calm.

Store an emergency number on your cellphone and keep one near your home telephone," says Bonner.

At the scene of an accident:

l Stay calm. Dial the emergency number on your phone and immediately state your name and contact number in case your phone cuts out;

l Describe the injuries and state how many people are injured. Give street names, the nearest intersection and describing landmarks;

l Alert oncoming traffic by switching on your vehicle's hazards. Do not move the injured;

l In case of an accident involving another vehicle, do not move the vehicles.

General tips on the road:

"Don't rush to your destination. Begin your holiday with the actual journey," says Michael Emery, sales and marketing manager of ER24.

l Never drink alcohol or take drugs;

l Don't eat too much;

l Rest well before a journey;

l Don't wear tight clothing;

l Wear sunglasses in direct sunshine. Don't wear tinted glasses after dark;

l Make sure your vehicle is well ventilated and alternate driving with someone;

l Stop every two hours or every 200km. Go for a stroll;

l Do not drive inside the yellow line.