Safety in Ramazan

Published June 29, 2015
Never throw water on a burning pan, cover it with a damp towel or a fire blanket and switch off the flame. —Creative commons
Never throw water on a burning pan, cover it with a damp towel or a fire blanket and switch off the flame. —Creative commons

Ramazan is a month for reflection and peace; however, more often than not in the rush to get home to have Iftar with the family or to hasten to cook as many dishes as one can in a limited time, people tend to take shortcuts that can sometimes lead to disaster.

Here are some tips to keep you safe:

Kitchen safety (Fire safety)

  • If deep frying, fill only a third of the pan with oil.

Don’t let your guard down and take all possible measures to keep safe.

  • If the pan is smoking excessively then turn off the flame and let the pan cool for a bit.

  • Never throw water on a burning pan, cover it with a damp towel or a fire blanket and switch off the flame.

  • Be extremely careful of the clothes you are wearing; loose ends could snag and cause spills or catch fire if they get too close to a flame. (It's a leading cause of burns).

  • Never leave the cooking unattended, especially with children in the home.

Using candles (Fire safety)

  • If you need to use a candle in case of power breakdown: Place the candle on a firm base which is preferably not of plastic or metal.

  • Light the candle where it is to be placed instead of walking through other rooms with a lit candle, especially if you have carpeted floors.

  • Keep them away from the reach of children.

  • Don`t leave them burning in a room unattended.

  • Scented candles turn to liquid to release their fragrance, so do ensure they're in a container that can prevent spillage.

Using generators (Avoiding accidents)

  • Placement of the equipment is essential to keep it cool and ensure proper ventilation for exhaust fumes.

  • Never refuel the generator when it is on or when it is overheated. Allow it to cool before refuelling as this can cause fires.

  • Have a torch handy when going to start up a generator; always check for leakages.

  • If storing fuel on site, ensure an appropriate fire extinguisher is readily available, as well as a sand bucket.

Staying cool during a heat wave

  • Wear light clothing, including light colours.

  • Sponge the nape of the neck, feet, hands, ears and head regularly with a towel dipped in normal tap water.

  • Stay indoors as much as possible and keep the house ventilated (when hot breeze is blowing).

  • Identify a cool room, usually an inner room (no direct sunlight on the walls). If power is not an issue keep the fan on and keep the doors closed. Go to the room and take a breather if you feel exhausted.

  • Avoid consumption of hot drinks all day, even at night.

  • When heading out, coveryour head, neck and arms.

  • Plan to carry out activities that involve exertion or extraordinary effort in the cooler periods of the day.

Monsoon rains

  • Ensure that all drains are unclogged to allow smooth flow of water.

  • Cover up exposed wiring or electrical equipment.

  • Keep sufficient supplies of potable water for your consumption, line water or sourced through bowsers in the immediate aftermath of rains may not be good for (gargling, wuzu, etc.) Never operate electrical appliances if your clothing is wet or if you need to stand in water to do so.

Road travel

  • Store a couple of water botties in the car; the water can be used to cool an overheating radiator or yourself if stranded in a traffic jam during hot days. Know the peak hours for travel and plan to leave either before or after to avoid traffic congestion.

  • Though shortcuts are tempting, if you`re not familiar with them they could prolong the agony.

  • Use the middle lanes as far as possible as outer ones are a muggers' delight.

  • Avoid road rage whether you`re dishing it out or on the receiving end.

  • Always carry your valid vehicle documents.

  • Before heading out check media, traffic police helplines, etc. for known bottlenecks and traffic jams.

  • Be prepared to abandon your vehicle in case of flooding,protests or other blockades of long durations

  • Grab your vehicle documents and valuables.

  • Lock the car and park it to a side if possible.

Shopping

  • Especially at Iftar time and in the pre-eid rush many unscrupulous elements are out to make an easy buck...by stealing your bucks.

  • The theft of belongings, vehicle parts or even the entire vehicle can occur during rush hours jams and crowds, therefore always keep a watch.

  • Park in regular parking zones; makeshift parking areas, while convenient, have little or no safety.

  • Male and female pickpockets are very active during this period.

  • Men should put their wallets in the front pockets.

  • Women should carry their bag cross shoulder across their front.

  • Split your cash and cards and only carry enough for the shopping you intend to do.

  • Report loss of cards to the banks immediately as the thieves tend to use them instantly and all expenses before the loss is reported are your responsibility.

  • Children should be kept close at all times; if they stray from your line of sight, stop what you are doing and bring them back.

  • Shop at odd hours to avoid crowds.

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