Useful Tips for Swimming in the Ocean
- Always swim near a lifeguard; never enter the ocean unless lifeguards are on duty! If you don’t swim well, stay in shallow depths and watch for sudden drop-offs.
- Use sunscreen to prevent serious sunburn.
- Never enter the ocean when lifeguards are not on duty (after 5pm).
- Jellyfish tentacles can result in red welts and severe pain. Wash the area with a mild soap and water, and then apply liberal amounts of meat tenderizer (MSG, Accent) to the still wet area. Benadryl will help lessen the reaction. If the reaction worsens see a physician. (You can purchase Benadryl and meat tenderizer at a grocery store or pharmacy).
- Be aware of rip currents formed when water rushes out to sea in a narrow path.
- If you’re caught in a rip current, don’t panic or swim against the current. Swim parallel to shore until you are out of the current. If you can’t break out of the current, float calmly until it dissipates, usually just beyond the breakers. Then swim diagonally to shore.
What to do if you need Medical Care
- Keep proof of your medical insurance (travel insurance arranged by sponsor agency) with you at all times and know the terms of your policy.
- There are several medical facilities and urgent care centers in Ocean City. There is also a county health department facility in Berlin, Maryland (8 miles from Ocean City). Contact your insurance company prior to visiting any medical center to get information about the coverage provided.
- You will have to pay cash or credit card at the time of your medical appointment. Keep all of your medical bills and receipts. You will need them to get reimbursed from the insurance company. Contact your sponsor if you do not know the procedure to file a claim for reimbursement.
- Do not go to Atlantic General Hospital’s Emergency Room (in Berlin) for minor illness and injuries (such as insect bites, sunburn, colds, etc.)!
- If you need medical care of an emergency nature (serious/life-threatening injury or illness) call 911 and ask for an ambulance to come to your residence. You will be transported to Atlantic General Hospital Emergency Room in Berlin, Maryland (8- miles from Ocean City). Please know the terms of your insurance coverage because many policies have a very high deductible ($200+) if you are not admitted to the hospital after receiving emergency care.
- Take your passport and your insurance card (or information) to the hospital or doctor’s office. If you do not know your insurance information, at least provide the name of your program sponsor to the receptionist at the doctor’s office or medical facility.
- If you are injured on the job, report it immediately to your supervisor so your employer is aware, and can document the injury. All employers are required to have Worker’s Compensation Coverage for their employees who are injured on the job, and will be responsible for the medical bills for work-related injuries.
During Hot WeatherTo protect your health when temperatures are extremely high, remember to keep cool and use common sense. The following tips are important:
- Drink Plenty of Fluids
- During hot weather you will need to increase your fluid intake, regardless of your activity level. Don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink. During heavy exercise in a hot environment, drink two to four glasses (16-32 ounces) of cool fluids each hour.
- Warning: If your doctor generally limits the amount of fluid you drink or has you on water pills, ask how much you should drink while the weather is hot. Don’t drink liquids that contain alcohol, or large amounts of sugar—these actually cause you to lose more body fluid. Also avoid very cold drinks,because they can cause stomach cramps.
- Replace Salt and Minerals
- Heavy sweating removes salt and minerals from the body. These are necessary for your body and must be replaced. If you must exercise, drink two to four glasses of cool, non-alcoholic fluids each hour. A sports beverage can replace the salt and minerals you lose in sweat. However, if you are on a low-salt diet, talk with your doctor before drinking a sports beverage or taking salt tablets.
- Wear Appropriate Clothing and Sunscreen
- Wear as little clothing as possible when you are at home. Choose lightweight, light-colored, loose-fitting clothing. Sunburn affects your body’s ability to cool itself and causes a loss of body fluids. It also causes pain and damages the skin. If you must go outdoors, protect yourself from the sun by wearing a wide-brimmed hat (also keeps you cooler) along with sunglasses, and by putting on sunscreen of SPF 15 or higher (the most effective products say “broad spectrum” or “UVA/UVB protection” on their labels)
- Schedule Outdoor Activities Carefully
- If you must be outdoors, try to limit your outdoor activity to morning and evening hours. Try to rest often in shady areas so that your body’s thermostat will have a chance to recover.
- Pace Yourself
- If you are not accustomed to working or exercising in a hot environment, start slowly and pick up the pace gradually. If exertion in the heat makes your heart pound and leaves you gasping for breath, STOP all activity. Get into a cool area or at least into the shade, and rest, especially if you become lightheaded, confused, weak, or faint. When working in the heat, monitor the condition of your co-workers and have someone do the same for you. Heat-induced illness can cause a person to become confused or lose consciousness.
Hot Weather Health EmergenciesEven short periods of high temperatures can cause serious health problems. During hot weather health emergencies, keep informed by listening to local weather and news channels or contact local health departments for health and safety updates. Doing too much on a hot day, spending too much time in the sun or staying too long in an overheated place can cause heat-related illnesses. Know the symptoms of heat disorders and overexposure to the sun, and be ready to give first aid treatment.
- Heat Stroke
- Heat stroke occurs when the body is unable to regulate its temperature. The body’s temperature rises rapidly, the sweating mechanism fails, and the body is unable to cool down. Body temperature may rise to 106°F or higher within 10 to 15 minutes. Heat stroke can cause death or permanent disability if emergency treatment is not provided.
- Recognizing Heat Stroke
Warning signs of heat stroke vary but may include the following:
- An extremely high body temperature (above 103°F, orally)
- Red, hot, and dry skin (no sweating)
- Rapid, strong pulse
- Throbbing headache
- What to Do
If you see any of these signs, you may be dealing with a life-threatening emergency. Have someone call for immediate medical assistance while you begin cooling the victim. Do the following:
- Get the victim to a shady area.
- Cool the victim rapidly using whatever methods you can. For example, immerse the victim in a tub of cool water; place the person in a cool shower; spray the victim with cool water from a garden hose; sponge the person with cool water; or if the humidity is low, wrap the victim in a cool, wet sheet and fan him or her vigorously.
- Monitor body temperature, and continue cooling efforts until the body temperature drops to 101-102°F.
- If emergency medical personnel are delayed, call the hospital emergency room for further instructions.
- Do not give the victim fluids to drink.
- Get medical assistance as soon as possible.
- Sometimes a victim’s muscles will begin to twitch uncontrollably as a result of heat stroke. If this happens, keep the victim from injuring himself, but do not place any object in the mouth and do not give fluids. If there is vomiting, make sure the airway remains open by turning the victim on his or her side.
Bicycling SafetyWhen riding a bicycle in Ocean City, here are a few tips … When riding a bicycle, you are considered a vehicle and must obey traffic laws. Below are some helpful tips to keep you safe while riding your bike in Ocean City:
- You MUST stop at all red lights and stop signs
- You MAY NOT ride a bicycle while impaired by alcohol or drugs
- You MAY NOT ride against traffic
- When going north, ride on the northbound side
- When going south, ride on the southbound side
- You MAY NOT ride on a sidewalk – it is illegal & dangerous
- You MAY NOT allow someone to ride on the handlebars … one person per seat
- You MAY NOT carry anything that prevents you from keeping both hands on the handlebars
- You MUST use a lamp when riding after dark
- You MAY NOT wear a headset or earplugs that cover both ears
- A lamp is REQUIRED on the front of a bicycle when people and vehicles are not clearly visible at 1,000 feet
- A red reflector is REQUIRED on the rear of the bicycle when people and vehicles are not clearly visible at 1,000 feet
Moped / Scooter Rules:
- Motor scooters and mopeds must be registered and have the appropriate titles affixed to the rear of the vehicle.
- Operators must have a driver’s license or have a Moped Operator Permit with proof of insurance upon stop.
- Drivers of motor scooters and mopeds must remain on the far right of the road.
- Motor scooters and mopeds are prohibited from operating on sidewalks.
Police and Safety
- If you are caught committing any crime, you will be arrested. Your case would go to court and if you are found guilty, you could be fined and/or sentenced to days, weeks or even longer in jail.
- Shoplifting (taking items from a store without paying) is against the law, and you will be caught and arrested if you commit this crime.
- You CAN trust the police. They are public servants and their job is to maintain law and order and to assist citizens and visitors in any difficulty. DO NOT HESITATE to ask them for help.
- In the event of an emergency Dial 911
- Non-Emergency number 410-723-6610
Ocean City Police DepartmentThe Ocean City Police Department, as part of and empowered by the community, is committed to a safe and peaceful environment, rendering aid to those in need, and protecting the lives, property and rights of residents and visitors. We shall provide the highest degree of ethical behavior, professional conduct and quality police services. We shall actively seek to identify community problems and their solutions, enhancing the quality of life in our community.
For more information contact Pfc. Morgan at 410-520-5304 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.