Stay safe at the cabin in winter, too
The Accident Prevention Day campaign is here to remind you that you should also pay attention to staying safe during trips to the cabin in wintertime. Being prepared and having the right attitude can prevent many accidents. The Accident Prevention Day campaign takes place in January, culminating on Friday 13 January.
In winter, there are safety risks associated with visits to the cabin, and you should pay attention to them. Darkness, for example, will make it more difficult to move around in the yard, increasing the risk of slipping and falling.
“It is more difficult to detect slippery places in the dark. You should pay attention to proper lighting, snow removal and gritting of the cabin area to make staying upright easier,” says Health Promotion Planning Officer Saara Aakko from the Finnish Red Cross.
The importance of your personal fire safety skills is heightened at the cabin
Special attention should be paid to fire safety in wintertime when we often light candles and enjoy fires in the fireplace. In the best situation, fires can be prevented. However, if a fire breaks out, the most important thing is rapid observation and action.
“Fire safety is ensured through prevention. Every bedroom should be fitted with a smoke detector. You should practice the use of first-aid fire fighting equipment, such as fire blankets and handheld extinguishers, in advance,” says Safety Communications Specialist Juha Hassila from the Finnish National Rescue Association (SPEK).
You should also pay special attention to heating the cabin in winter. If you heat a fireplace that has not been used in a while, it is important to start heating with small fires. Sudden and intense heat may break the flues.
Don't go on the ice alone
Many cabins are located near waterways, but you should never venture onto the ice unprepared. The most important thing is to ensure the thickness of the ice, learn to recognise hazardous areas and always carry safety equipment, such as ice picks. You should never go on the ice alone.
“A friend is your best piece of safety equipment, whether you are on familiar ice or in a new area. A friend can alert help and rescue you, if necessary,” says Communications Specialist Niko Nieminen from the Finnish Swimming Teaching and Lifesaving Federation (FSL).
Use a checklist to prepare for visiting the cabin in the winter
Being prepared and having the right attitude can prevent many accidents. The cabin safety checklist will help you prepare.
- Download the 112 Suomi mobile app.
- Adjust your speed to winter conditions when driving to the cabin.
- Check that the cabin has appropriate first aid equipment.
- Check the functionality of the smoke alarms and make sure that the cabin has first-aid fire fighting equipment.
- Ensure the snow removal and gritting of roads and paths.
- Use anti-slip guards or studded or high-traction shoes in slippery conditions.
- Remember to prepare and equip yourself when going on the ice.
- Wear a head lamp or use a flashlight in dark areas.
- Prepare for prolonged power outages.
- Intoxicants increase the risk of accidents. Enjoy alcohol with moderation.
Organisations and authorities have been working together since 1993 in order to prevent accidents. One form of cooperation is to impact people’s attitudes by campaigning on the Accident Prevention Day. During the campaign, people are encouraged to think of ways for everyone to reduce risks and prevent accidents at work, at home and in traffic. This year, the Accident Prevention Day campaign takes place in January and October. The theme of the campaigns is safety at the cabin.
On the Accident Prevention Day campaign:
Saara Aakko, Planning Officer, the Finnish Red Cross, tel. +358 (0)40 480 6973, saara.aakko(at)punainenristi.fi
On fire safety:
Juha Hassila, Safety Communications Specialist, Finnish National Rescue Association (SPEK), tel. +358 (0)40 758 7846, juha.hassila(at)spek.fi
On water safety:
Niko Nieminen, Communications Specialist, Finnish Swimming Teaching and Lifesaving Federation (FSL), tel. +358 (0)400 469 202, niko.nieminen(at)suh.fi
Checklist for a safe stay at the cottage during the winter
Download the checklist (PDF)
www.tapaturmapäivä.fi (in Finnish)