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THE SAFETY ZONE

Today's Tip

October 09, 2000

When Riding a Scooter, It's Wise to Wear a Helmet--and Watch Out for Hills

* Wear a helmet. Scooter manufacturers and retailers recommend all riders wear helmets, just as you would on bikes or in-line skates. They also recommend protective pads for knees, wrists and elbows. Even though the scooters might not seem dangerous, you can get hurt on them just like on a bike or in-line skates.

* Watch out when you're going downhill. Scooters can go much faster than you might think, and hills are particularly difficult to negotiate on the two wheels. Take it easy and brake downhill, or walk your scooter on that span.

* Scooters are made for children starting at about age 8, although some younger children will be able to use them. Kids younger than 8 should always have an adult around to make sure they're safe on the scooter, says Carlton Calvin, president of Razor USA.

Take Care When Handling

Fresh Produce to Avoid Food-Borne Illness

* At the store, purchase produce that is not bruised or damaged. If buying fresh-cut produce, be sure it is refrigerated or surrounded by ice.

* At home, chill and refrigerate foods. After purchase, put away produce that needs refrigeration promptly. (Fresh whole produce such as bananas and potatoes do not need refrigeration.) Fresh produce should be refrigerated within two hours of peeling or cutting. Leftover cut produce should be discarded if left at room temperature for more than two hours.

* Wash hands often. Hands should be washed with hot, soapy water before and after handling fresh produce, or raw meat, poultry or seafood, as well as after using the bathroom, changing diapers, or handling pets.

* Wash all fresh fruits and vegetables with cool tap water immediately before eating. Don't use soap or detergents. Scrub firm produce, such as melons and cucumbers, with a clean produce brush. Cut away any bruised or damaged areas before eating.

* Wash surfaces often. Cutting boards, dishes, utensils, and counter tops should be washed with hot, soapy water and sanitized after coming in contact with fresh produce, or raw meat, poultry or seafood. Sanitize after use with a solution of one teaspoon of chlorine bleach in one quart of water.

Source: UC Davis, Washington Post

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