Your safety, loved ones, pets and property safety is essential. Find tips for a safe camping to enhance your overall camping experience.
Going camping is fun. However, safety measures ought to be adhered to at all times to minimize accidents and injuries irrespective of the type of camping you have chosen. Besides, it is also essential to understand the possible risk factors to safety and how to manage them.
So, what are some camping safety tips to be followed? The tips to follow would be based on possible safety risk factors such as attacks by wild animals, insect bites, toxic plants, fire hazards, harsh weather, poisoning by carbon monoxide, harmful rays from the sun, contaminated food and water, and limitations of safety first aid kits.
The aftermath of the occurrence of the risk factors can not only inflict injuries but can be fatal. It will be the worst experience going to have fun only to come back with an injury. In fact, most hazards can be prevented and if not they can also be managed.
You need sufficient knowledge in order to effectively handle such scenarios. When RV living with kids, you need to have a good knowledge on the tips for camping with kids.
The following is a guide that discusses
- Insect bites safety measures
- Campfire safety measures
- Keeping wild animals away from your campsite
- Prevent being victims of poisonous plants
- Safety measures when camping in severe weather (wind, sun, cold, rain)
- Carbon monoxide safety
- Camping water and food safety
- Survival tips when camping
- 10 Deadly Rvers mistake to avoid (video)
Safety Measure: How Do You Prevent Insect Bites When Camping?
You can have bites and be stung from known insects such as wasps, ants, ticks, bees, mosquitoes, scorpions, centipedes, and spiders, among others to unknown insects.
Depending with the type of the insect, you can get skin irritations, inflammations, wounds, diseased, and some insects can cripple your body part such as a leg making you limp or completely be unable to walk until you have received treatment.
There is nothing magical about this, but you have to be a keen observant. Thoroughly inspect the areas you intent to park your RV, pitch your tent, sleep on the ground, and even have the children play around.
Areas likely to have high risks of insects include places that look swampy, have a little hill or small raised surface with holes. Sometimes, you may actually see a colony of the insect.
Insect repellants would help keep insects far from you. Depending with the type of repellant some work well when applied on the exposed skin, some can be sprayed on the clothes, while some you simply have to carry it while open.
Follow the instructions for more effectiveness based on a manufacturer. Remember incorrect use of repellants can be harmful. Always store repellants out of reach of children.
Remember you could be using a repellant but you have not protected your pets. Pets can be easy prey for insect bites including ticks that if you do not notice the insect would be in your camping shelter the moment you come back.
Be on the watch out and get more details on how to protect and manage insects from pets by the help of a veterinary.
Just as you won’t feel safe and comfortable having someone intrude your home and privacy, so do insects. Be sure not to interfere with insect habitat since they can do all they can to harm you just to protect their homes.
If you can completely stay away from places such as beehives, ant hills, stagnant waters, spider webs, and tall grass among others.
The more most of your skin is covered, the safer you are from insect bites. Often, long-sleeved clothing are likely to protect you from insect bites. Long pants could be a better option to choosing your best shorts to go camping.
Choose bright colored and light clothing for camping for easy identification of an insect such as ticks clinging on your cloth and remove the immediately. Boots or closed shoes can protect your feet from insect bites.
Insects such as wasp and bees love nice smelling scent. Be sure not to use strong perfumes and if possible do not use them as they attract the latter insects.
Besides, if you have strong allergies from insects sting like bees and your doctor has prescribed an Epipen, be sure to have it throughout your camping.
Also, while traversing a bush or a forest there is often a marked trail. Make it a habit to use the marked place as much as possible that choosing a new path every time you traverse the area even if your dressing is on point.
Insects are less likely to habit a frequent traversed area for fear of being crushed by human feet.
Different insects have various sounds they make and some such as wasps, and bees buzzing is audible to human ears. Be alert and once you hear buzzing sounds the possibility of insects being in the vicinity is high.
Investigate the area for safety and if your instincts tell you the place is not safe, stay away before you get the wrath of insects such as bees.
Secure your shelter
Whether tent camping or RV camping, the shelter should be secured from insects. For tents, pitch in an insect free zone. Also, crawling insects are likely to enter the tent or RV in any possible openings.
Try seal the opening before taking a rest. Be sure to zip up all the tent flaps once you exit or enter the tent. For RVs, repellants can be helpful to apply in openings.
Furthermore, some insects have a good scent of food. Do not store food in tents as you risk having an army of insects as your visitors.
If you have to store food inside the tent, make use of closed containers. Clean up any leftovers on the floor and throw in designated waste bins outside the tents.
Light attract insect. You shelter can be intruded with insects when the lights are on. So, securely lock all openings of the shelter when having lights on and turn the lights off when not using such as when you are not inside.
Animals such as dogs are vulnerable to tick and flea bites. A veterinary would advise on medications to carry to deter such insects from attacking your pets. Get more tips on how to camp with dogs
First Aid Kits
The kits should contain tweezers to help you remove insects such as ticks. Have insect repellants. Pack anti-itch creams that you can apply when you have a sting or a bite from an insect.
For those allergic to bites and stings, ensure you have an Epipen recommended by your doctor. Remove insects’ stings from your body as soon as you get stung.
The longer the sting stays in your skin, the more toxins it inflicts in your body. So act fast to prevent more damage. Seek for help as soon as possible if you have been severely stung by insects.
Safety Measure: How Do You Stay Safe Around A Campfire?
Make a safe campfire
The way you make your campfire would go a long way in affecting your overall safety in the camp. Be sure to use the campground recommended fire pits.
Also, be creative in finding the most suitable location to build the campfire is a location is not provided.
Campfires should be built in an open clear space or perhaps in a rocky area. If the campfire site is surrounded by bushes, thick and long grasses, overhanging and low trees, litter, dry paper, and pressurized cans increases the risks of fire hazards.
Don’t be lazy, clear the area to a diameter of about 9 feet if you have to just to ensure safety. Put rocks round the campfire to confine it in that designated location.
Only throw the matchstick away when you are sure it is completely off and not burning. Wood should be stacked much far away from the fireplace such that even strong winds wont link the fire to the woods.
Campfires should be built in flat terrains. Steep slopes risks fires spreading to other places especially is a wood that has catch fires rolls down under the influence of strong winds and gravity. A landscape that is dusty or cemented could be a good choice to build a fireplace.
Size of fire
Even if you have excess source of fuel such as woods at your disposal, never have a campfire beyond a diameter of 4 feet and a height of 3 feet. Put wood just enough to keep the fire burning.
Otherwise, when the fire covers a larger surface the chances of spreading to other places in the instance the area experiences strong winds is high. Furthermore, putting off a large fire during emergencies can be an uphill task and lots of damages can be done.
Standby water or dust
You need to have water or dust ready just in case you urgently need to put out the fire in an emergency. It could be so devastating when strong winds cause the fire to further spread in other areas yet you can’t do anything.
Looking for a water source when there is already a fire outbreak can cause more panic. Besides, it could be too late to save anything. Simply, fetch water or dust in advance before putting up a fire.
Open fires should never be left unattended. You need to be keener especially when camping with kids and pets. Maintain a safe distance when camping with minors.
Supervision is paramount to ensure safety when RV living with kids. Never go to bed first and leave the kids to play around the campfire. You better put out the fire if you are too tired to keep watching.
Entertainment and Games
Play safe games around a campfire. Adults should help direct young children on games to play. Get more tips on 41 categories of camping fun activities you can do including campfire games when camping.
Safety Measures: How Do I Keep Wild Animals Out of My Campsite?
Caution When Using Perfumes
If possible, do not apply any perfume when camping. Some perfume scents attracts wild animals such as rattlesnakes, and bears just to mention a few that increases the risks of attack.
Besides, do not perfume your shelter whether RV or a tent as it will also attract wild animals that may linger around waiting to enter the shelter whenever the chance. You may not like the aftermath.
If you have to store food inside the shelter cover it completely such that the aroma of the food may not attract wild animals in search of food.
In fact, in many campgrounds especially for those camping in tents there is a specific location to store food to prevent attacks by animals such as bears. You can also hang the packed food 10 feet above the ground.
Also, the idea of cooking outside is nice including lighting a campfire. However, be sure that wherever you collect the firewood is safe from snakes.
Proper organization of the woods in an organized manner would minimize chances of creating a hiding place for snakes compared to when the wood is heaped with no order.
Besides, wear safety gloves when you want to pick woods to put in fire. Also, in the instance you get a snakebite immediately call for help so you get immediate medical attention.
When RVing with family, you should be as clean and neat as possible. Once done using the dishes, have them cleaned immediately or store away from the shelter if it is a tent, or pack them together in a sealed container. The leftovers aroma would still attract animals.
When choosing a campsite be sure to know possible wild animals living in the vicinity, a history of attacks and how the problems was successfully managed. Share the knowledge with everyone that accompanies you camping.
Sometimes you may be ambushed by an animal. If possible act as calm as possible, fake it. For instance if you accidentally encounter bear cubs do not run away, and neither should you dare touch them.
The mother is always nearby and perhaps watching and always ready to protect the cubs. If the mother perceives the cubs are still safe despite your presence it is less likely to attack you and they will go away at their time.
Always lock the vehicle, car, RV, and tent among other forms of shelter you may have when camping as long as you are not using it. Leaving the doors say of an RV open and you go for a nature walk even for 20minutes you may come back to be welcomed by a wild intruder.
Have Your Gear
Wherever you go, have your gear with you. Leaving your bag in a bush and you come to pick it later you may carry a snake with you. Besides, if you have to place the gear down in order to rest or do something inspect the area for safety.
Before picking up the gear once done inspect it again to be sure you are not carrying another strange thing.
Be Cautious with Your Curiosity
Young ones of animals may lure you to move closer to them, and perhaps curdle them. Do not. The parent is always nearby and the need to protect the helpless young ones can end up in a deadly attack.
Ensure your kids do not interfere with the young ones of animals even when they play. As small as your kids are they can be a threat to large animals such as a bear offspring and an attack by the parent is inevitable.
Maintain a Companion
It is not only fun to camp with someone else, but company enhances safety. It is not recommended to go camping alone just in case you encounter an animal attack, you are likely to be saved if you are with someone.
Trust Your Instincts
While in the wild, be vigilant and watchful. Look around. Make good use of your ears. Always look around you whether you are siting or walking.
Even when taking a nap, check the area and have someone else stay alert when you sleep. If your instincts tells you something is not right, do not ignore. Maintain caution.
Safety Measures: How Do You Prevent Poisonous Plants?
When your skin gets in contact with a toxic plant, it is likely that you will receive skill irritations, have itchy skin, reddening of skin, the areas may swell and may be painful. The discomfort is likely to negatively affect your overall camping experience.
Do not be Touchy
You are likely to come across several plants both poisonous and non-poisonous. In fact, for many of us it is less likely to identify poisonous plants at a glance.
So, stay safe and do not be overcome by temptation to touch it however alluring to the eye they may look. Use gloves if you have to touch the plants unless you are very sure it is not poisonous.
Some common examples of poisonous plants include but are not limited to poison oak, ivy, and poison sumac.
Long sleeved tops, long pants, socks, and closed shoes would go a long way in covering most of your skin such that is minimizes contact if any with a toxic plants.
When doing laundry, separate the clothes that were exposed to plant contact to prevent further contamination to other clothes.
Apply Barrier Creams
If you intend to camp in areas full of trees, and bushes, get a barrier cream. The creams content include bentoquatam that goes a long way in protecting the exposed skin from being damaged by poison sumac, ivy, and oak.
Tools used during camping should be cleaned properly with water and soap or alcohol. Besides, disposals such as gloves should be properly disposed away from children reach.
Improper disposal of waste such as used gloves can contaminate the site since they can be active for years and can still cause harm long after you completed the trip.
When camping and the poisonous plant gets in contact with your skin, immediately if possible wash with water and soap. You can also seek medical help if the exposure was too much and the damage is not improving even after washing.
Use designated trees and woods to put up a fire when camping. Not every plant is safe for burning in a campfire. Some produce toxic smells when burned that can be harmful when inhaled.
Ask if you are not sure. Also, burn the plants in an open space to ensure there is sufficient ventilation in the area.
Safety Measures: What Do You Do in Severe Weather While Camping?
Investigate the area you intend to do camping on various weather patterns. Be it extreme sun, wind, and rain. Be ready to handle the resultant heat, cold, floods, and even storms.
Knowing the likely weather patterns of the place would go a long way in informing your choice of gear to pack for camping.
How to Camp in the Wind
If possible wait for the wind to die.
It is worth waiting instead of risking to get your gear blown away. In some cases you may have to struggle to fix gears due to darkness and the need to rest as a result of fatigue.
Find an alternative shelter
Stay somewhere safe as you wait for the wind to die. Even in the wild you can get shelter in places such as a ridge or behind a huge rock. Be sure to inspect the area safety before relaxing in that place.
Pitch your tent or pack your RV in a secure place not under a dead hanging branch, or a dead tree since they can easily be fallen my strong winds and you will get injured in the process. Always find a safe place as a location for your shelter.
Blend with the wind direction.
For instance, if it is pitching a tent make it in a way that it enhances aerodynamics of the wind in a manner that it won’t act as an obstruction that should be wiped out of the way.
Do not work alone in the wind lest you risk items flying away as you struggle to fix. Extra hands would help in stabilizing thing such as tent poles and fixing the tent. Be sure to securely anchor all the items exposed in the wind as long as they can be flown away. Have a strong cord in handy.
Have all opening of RV or tent closed when not in use. Opening allow more air to enter and if it is a tent that is light weight it can easily be blown away.
Besides, too much air entering may cause discomfort and can make it hard to breathe comfortably. Also, the wind may damp waste in your shelter is those openings are open.
Pack gear inside
For tent campers, have the gears and packs inside the tent. It increases the weight of the tent preventing it from being blown away by the winds.
How Do You Survive Camping in Heat/Sun
Choice of clothes
Lightweight clothes are the best when camping in the sun. Be sure to pack bright colors they are more comfortable since they reflect most heat and reduce the chances of making you feel too hot in comparison to wearing dark colors.
Despite being sunny, wear long pants and long-sleeved tops to cover your skin from being damaged by the sun’s rays.
While camping outside, your eyes will be affected with the strong rays of the sun especially when the sun is hot about midday.
Protect your eyes using UV sunglasses. Always remember to pack extra just in case it is misplaced especially when camping with kids.
It is a fact that you won’t be moving about the whole day when camping, you need time to rest and get refreshed with snacks, and food. As a result, let your resting time be when the sun heat is at its peak.
Often, the sun is hot about midday to 3 pm. At this time, find a good shed for covering yourselves from the scorching heat of the sun.
Also, buy a good sunscreen and apply on your skin. The sunscreen will protect your exposed skin from being damaged from the sun’s rays. Also, sometimes you may not be lucky enough and can experience sun burns on your skin.
Treat the areas that have been affected by applying moisturizers whose constituents include aloe Vera and hydrate yourself by drinking water.
Due to the effect of the sun, you are likely to sweat a lot and also feel thirsty often. Carry some bottles of water with you. Water not only helps you stay hydrated, but also helps you stay active most of the time as it enhance brain functionality.
Besides, water helps in maintaining a good texture for your skin. Remember too much dehydration can even cause you to collapse, don’t wait till you faint for lack of water. Carry enough water.
Put on a hat. The hat further offers a cover to your face and eyes against being damaged by the sun’s rays. Besides, it helps in enhancing your appearance and can make you look fancier with various styles you may wish to wear the hat.
Camp under a shed
Choice the location for your shelter be it a tent or an RV under a shed. Keep in mind that peak hours of the sunshine would heat up the air in your shelter and you are likely to experience discomfort if you are to use the shelter during those hours.
How Do You Camp When It Is Cold?
Minimize heat loss
Despite camping in the cold, you can still afford to be cozy and warm. The key thing when camping in cold or during winter is to stay warm as much as possible.
Preventing heat loss by all means including minimizing heat loss by evaporation, conduction, radiation, and convention is essential.
A closed-cell foam sleeping pad can greatly help you stay warm at night or when taking a nap during the day. When purchasing sleeping pad, be sure to check the R-value.
The R-value shows the stability of the form in resisting to conduct heat. The higher the R-value the better the sleeping pad since minimal to no heat loss will be experienced when you sleep.
Besides, check for its compressibility, the weight, and comfort prior making a purchase. Buy what you need, not what a seller wants you to buy.
Sleep close to each other
When sleeping in the cold, sleep close to each other. The closer you are say couples when sleeping, the better in terms of reducing heat loss. In fact, you will help each other maintain the needed warmth of each other.
Find an emergency blanket. It is a blanket that you cover round the whole shelter to act as a barrier to prevent heat lose. The heat generated inside the shelter can be easily maintained such that the inside shelter would always be much warmer than the outside.
Bottle of hot water
Make use of hot water in a bottle to create the desired warmth. For instance, if you have enough bottles pack them with hot water and place the bottles in several places in the shelter.
In fact, put some hot water bottles in your sleeping pad to bring about a sauna stone experience and have the needed warmth.
Warm shoe liner and hand gloves
You need to have several warm liners to place in the boots, and inside the gloves. Get woolen socks to further keep the feet warm. The gloves should be well padded and have an outer material that is insulated. In that manner, you will maintain warm feet and hands during camping.
Dress well and minimize extremely tight clothes including underwear, socks, and gloves as they hinder sufficient blood flow to reaching your body extremities.
Besides, have all your clothing be made of wool or synthetic fabrics as they are good in keeping you warm much longer. Socks, gloves, and cap need to be warm and cozy.
Despite the cold, have your nose or mouth pop out from whichever cover you have including in hoods and sleeping bags. You still need to breathe fresh air from the outside.
Besides, some sleeping bags such as condensation bag would lose its insulation ability if you keep breathing inside since the air you breathe out has moisture that in turn dampens the insulation bag.
So, have a small hole to breath. Sometimes you may wake up from sleep to find already recurring condensation, simply ventilate the area by opening a small gap to allow free flow of air either hot or cold.
Use your belongings as insulators
Use your gear and other belongings to further insulate your shelter by packing at the walls round the shelter from the inside. They act as a barrier to prevent heat loss and if any, the rate of heat loss would be much reduced than in an empty space.
How Do You Camp In The Rain Like A Pro?
Have several plastic bags ready and with you always. For instance, you can protect you gear with the black garbage plastic bag. If you find the ones with a Ziploc the better. They would prevent your gear from getting soggy and wet from the rain.
Also, your food would be safely packed in a Ziploc bags. The bags can be used to cover firewood and even the place you would put fire ensure there is no fire on before covering.
Carry newspapers. Old newspapers can be stacked inside you wet shoes to quicken drying.
You do not want your feet to stay soggy and wet all day because you had been rained on or perhaps you stepped in a shallow pit hole with water. Besides, the newspaper would help you in setting up a fire after the rains.
Always locate a place to set up your shelter free from the main path of running water and floods. A raised surface that is not too steep would be the best option to set your tent or park your RV. The place need to be comfortable to stay as well as leave the place.
It would be a worst experience if every time you have to access or leave your shelter you swim first or walk in flooded waters, the experience would definitely ruin the whole camping experience.
Heavy duty tarp
Be sure to pack a heavy duty tarp. The tarp prevents ground water from flooding the insider of your tent as you lay it down on the floor and extend it slightly on above the ground covering the entire lower side of the tent. Neatly fold excess tarp on the outside.
Once you have set the tarp, lets protect the inside floor from water. To the inside, place another layer of a plastic sheet preferable like the one used in construction.
It reinforces the floor preventing water from further seeping to your gear located on the inside. If you wish, you can have another tap placed on the outside of your tent to prevent water from getting into your tent.
Ensure you have the correct dressing. Carry clothes that do not have cotton especially on the outside where they can get in contact with rain water. Cotton clothes easily gets damp and are less likely to get dry.
Have light weight clothes preferably the outside materials to be synthetic or nylon as they easily allow water to move away without making the cloth damp.
Rain long pants and rain jackets will further protect your from rain water. In fact, they would protect the inner layer of your clothes from getting soggy with water. Some rain pants and jackets are warm enough such that you may not need too much clothing on the inside.
Have waterproof shoes. Despite being expensive, waterproof boots or shoes would greatly enhance your comfort in the rain. Your feet would be protected against the running waters.
In fact, you can still continue interacting with nature when you are properly dressed with no worry of getting wet or cold and still be comfortable and dry throughout camping in the rain.
Safety Measures: How Can You Prevent Carbon Monoxide Poisoning?
Carbon monoxide (CO) gas is among the listed toxic gas. The gas is colorless and odorless, and you are less likely to notice its presence. Several deaths have resulted from the CO gas. The gas is emitted when organic fuel is burned.
Excess inhalation of the toxic gas can result in dizziness, vomiting, general body weakness, confusion, headache, chest pain. In worst case scenario, the gas can trigger seizures, arrhythmias, loss of consciousness, and even death.
Always ventilate your shelter whenever you lit a fire inside. Even if you are heating the place to warm it up or cook, have the window opened to allow fresh air inside and prevent accumulation of CO gas. You may be lured to not open the windows in extreme cold weather but it is worth it.
Check Flame Color
Gas stove should not produce a yellow flame. Once you notice, turn off the gas. Remove clogs from any of the gas pores. If the color still persist, get a technician to help you. Yellow flames have a lot of CO emitted.
For RVs, the combustion channel is designed in a manner that it is safe to put on the fire while using it. Be sure that the flue is well erected in a vertical position and the end should be dust free and not blocked.
Flue helps in releasing the waste gasses from combustion to the outside instead of accumulating inside the camper.
Buy a CO sensor. They are affordable and you can install it yourself. Often, the sensor will raise an alarm whenever too much CO has accumulated in the shelter.
Sensor enhances safety since once the signal is on, open all forms of ventilation including doors and windows and if possible step outside for some minutes.
Also, be sure to regularly inspect the propane gas if you use. Any propane leaks can cause serious injuries and sometimes can be fatal. Do a regular maintenance not forgetting the flue if you are using a camper.
Lit Fires in Open Space
Fires should be lit in open space with sufficient ventilation when camping. Be sure the area is free from litter, overhanging trees and piles of wood.
When using candle lanterns, maintain safety since they can easily lit up anything that comes in contact with the naked flame. Prevent fire break out as well as CO poisoning.
First Aid Tip
First aid is essential when RVing with family. In the instance of intoxication, ventilate the areas by opening all windows and doors. Get the affected person outside.
You can administer mouth-to-mouth resuscitation as part of first aid measures. Call for an emergency help from others as well as medical help.
Safety Measures: Water and Food
In order to enjoy your camping, you require safe food and water. Consuming contaminated products would not only affect your well being but also ruin your overall camping experience. You do not wish to have diarrhea while camping yet the issue can be prevented.
Proper Storage of Food
Keep cold food cold. Perishable food should be kept at cool temperatures always. Otherwise, carry few that can be consumed within a short period of time.
Make use of a refrigerator and maintain it cold for those using RV. Besides, power on the refrigerator early since knowing how long it takes an RV fridge to get cold is affected by various factors. For tent campers, a portable cooler can do you good for some time.
Store dry food dry, do not allow water to seep in dry foods as the food will get spoiled. In fact, make use of Ziploc polythene bags or plastic cans with seals. Preventing air from entering the dried food can enhance duration of the food.
Even if you are thirsty, do not quench your thirst from any unpurified water such as the one flowing in a river.
Get a water bottle, fill with water, and add a water-purifying liquid or tablet based on the manufacturers’ guidelines. Make it safe before consuming.
Also, store water in clean containers. Water containers should have seals and lock when not using the container. If left open, you risk dust, and other dirt including insects from falling inside the water thus contaminating it.
Also, do not consume overstayed water. Overstayed water risks having the growth of bacteria and algae that when consumed are toxic to the body.
Before going camping, have all water containers cleaned. Also, before refilling water in an empty water container be sure to properly clean it.
Safety Measures: Camping Survival Items
A camping checklist when RVing with family, RV living with kids, or you have pets will help you carry what you need for survival However, the following is a general list of some of the essential survival kit item list you should have.
They list include:
- Mental and physical fitness.
- Water purification tablet
- Water bottle
- Fire starter
- Pocket knife
- Emergency whistle
- Map and compass
- Suitable clothing
- First-aid kit
If you are camping with an RV, there are specific common behaviors during the travel that can pose a risk and may also get you in the wrong side of the law. Always remember knowledge is power and can save you a lot.
10 Deadly Rvers Mistake to Avoid (video)
There are some common things RVers do that can risk the safety of your loved ones. Do not do things the wrong way. Watch the video and practice safety always.