The Indiana Department of Homeland Security, Indiana State Board of Animal Health and Indiana State Police are sending out basic safety information for Hoosiers visiting festivals and fairs this season... among them, monitor weather forecasts and know where to go in the event of an unexpected thunderstorm... wear sunscreen and closed-toe shoes, not flips-flops, to protect your feet... keep a watchful eye on children... and if you see something suspicious, say something. The department also says every ride should have a prominently displayed, current permit issued by the Indiana Department of Homeland Security.
More info from the Indiana Department of Homeland Security:
General Safety Tips
•Pay attention to weather forecasts and prepare appropriately.
•Be aware of your surroundings and know where you will go if you need to seek shelter from an unexpected thunderstorm.
•Be sure to use sunscreen and sunglasses to protect yourself from harmful UV rays. Remember, even on overcast days UV rays are still powerful enough to burn skin so use sunscreen.
•On hot days, make sure you drink plenty of water to stay hydrated.
•Wear closed toe shoes like tennis shoes, not flip-flops or sandals, to protect your feet.
•Remember “If you see something, say something.” If you see people or activities that seem suspicious, report your observations to the Indiana Intelligence Fusion Center at 877-226-1026. If you believe danger is imminent, contact local security or call 911.
Safety tips for kids and caregivers
Teach kids to stay calm and stay put if they become separated from parents or other caregivers. Knowing what to do in this scary situation will help prevent a lost child from panicking, and help safety officials locate them faster.
•Keep a watchful eye on children. It’s easy for children and caregivers to become separated in large crowds.
•Have an established family meeting location where you will reconnect if separated.
•Check with county fair organizers and ask for ‘missing parent’ contact tags your children can wear with your name and cell phone number in case your child becomes separated.
•If you do become separated from your child, notify local security immediately.
Animal Safety Tips
•Wash your hands or use hand sanitizer after touching animals, and don’t consume any food inside of the barns.
•Watch out for animal feces on barn floors and aisle ways when walking or using strollers.
•Animals at the fair are in a noisy, crowded and unfamiliar environment, and may easily become dangerous if they are spooked or scared.
•Avoid running, yelling, talking loudly or making loud noises while in the animal barns.
•Never attempt to pet any animal at the fair without receiving explicit permission from the animal’s owner.
Fire Safety Tips
•Make sure all fires are extinguished and dispose of cigarettes properly.
•Ensure all wires being used for fair exhibits are away from flammable materials such as cloth or hay.
•If parking on grass lots while attending the fair, avoid parking on tall dry grass. Park on mowed grass whenever possible.
•Use caution refilling generators. Exhaust can be very hot. Make sure the exhaust vent is pointing up in the air and not down at the ground, where it could catch dry grass or other flammables on fire.
Amusement Ride Safety Tips
•Don’t board a ride if you see broken parts, signs of improper maintenance, or an inattentive operator. Report your observations to the ride operator or call IDHS amusement ride hotline at 1-888-203-5020.
•Every ride should have a prominently displayed, current permit issued by IDHS. If the ride has no such permit, call the amusement ride hotline at 1-888-203-5020.
•Read all posted rules and listen to instructions given by ride operators.
•Watch the ride with your child before boarding. Point out the operator and the entrance and exit locations prior to riding. Make sure they understand the instructions and warnings fully.
•Obey minimum height, age, and weight restrictions. Never sneak children onto rides if they are too small or too young. A smaller/younger child may not be physically or developmentally able to stay safely seated.
•If you can’t count on your child to stay seated with hands and feet inside, don’t let them ride.
•Keep all body parts (hands, arms, legs, long hair, etc.) inside the ride at all times. If you have long hair, keep it pulled up with a hat or hair tie.
•Always use the safety equipment provided (seat belt, shoulder harness, lap bar, etc.).
•Remain in the ride until it comes to a complete stop at the unloading point. If a ride stops temporarily due to mechanical failure or other reasons, stay seated and wait for an operator to give you further instructions.
•Know your physical conditions and limitations. If you suspect that your health could be at risk for any reason, or that you could aggravate a preexisting condition of any kind, do not ride.
•Additional ride safety tips are available at GetPrepared.in.gov.
IDHS coordinates the certification of all emergency medical services personnel in Indiana, and oversees the regular inspection of emergency medical transports and the required medical equipment. The Indiana State Building Commissioner’s Office, charged with permitting and inspecting amusement rides in Indiana, is also a division of IDHS.
In northeast Indiana, Indiana Conservation Officers say they are investigating the apparent drowning death of an 18-year-old Marion man Sunday afternoon at a state reservoir in Huntington County about thirty miles southwest of Fort Wayne. Officials say witnesses stated Jordan Laute swam out past the roped barrier into deep water, and that once it became evident he was in trouble, witnesses and bystanders attempted unsuccessfully to locate him. Indiana Conservation Officers utilized side scan sonar to locate Laute in 9’ of water at 6:15pm.
Accident blocking all lanes eastbound Borman near 6 mile marker, just before Burr Street in Gary. Involved a car that was on fire. Crews on scene. May be a fatality investigation.
The ribbon was cut Thursday for a brand-new Meijer at US highway 6 and Willowcreek Road in Portage. The former “Super K” along US 6 has been transformed into a new 190-thousand square-foot supercenter now open for Region shoppers. The Grand Opening Celebration is this Sunday.
Meijer also presented donations as part of the store's opening: five-thousand dollars for the Portage Police Department's K9 unit, two-thousand dollars to the Portage Township Food Pantry, and five-hundred dollars went to Hannah's Hope, a non-profit organization that tries to help children with special needs obtain various therapies and expensive medical equipment.
The Grand-Rapids based retailer, which opened its first store in 1934, opened two stores in northern Indiana Thursday – the other in Warsaw. Combined the company says the stores will create more than five-hundred new jobs. Meijer officials also say the new locations are built to “LEED”, Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design standards.
The storm that battered Crown Point on Wednesday took a direct hit at the historic Lake Court House.
The force of the 100-mile-per-hour winds blew out windows in the Bell Tower, damaged sections of the clay tile roof, uprooted signs and downed tree limbs. Costs to repair the damage is estimated in the tens of thousands of dollars.
Marty Wheeler, president of the Lake Court House Foundation, is appealing to the community for help.
“The storm caused significant damage to the Court House and the surrounding grounds,” Wheeler said. “This is a historic building that receives no support except what we are able to get through donations from individuals and businesses throughout Lake County. We are asking anyone who has a few dollars they can spare to donate what they can to the Grand Old Lady. She has stood through many storms during her 135 years here but this one has certainly taken its toll.”
The Lake Court House Foundation Board has been hard at work drumming up support and donations for necessary repairs for the Court House and to create an endowment that would help when unexpected crises – such as storms – cause damage.
If you would like to help, please send donations to:Lake Court House Foundation, P.O. Box 556, Crown Point, IN 46308.
You may also donate online at https://www.lakecourthousefoundation.org. For more information, please contact Wheeler at (219) 663-0660.
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