An image of Lake Tapps in the fall, with a clear view of Mt. Rainier

Prevent Injuries in the Great Outdoors

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We want everyone to enjoy a healthy, clean and safe environment.

The outdoors offers many opportunities to stay active. Exercise is an important part of maintaining good health. Time spent enjoying nature also improves your mental health. So get out there and play—safely!

Swim safely

Water can be a lot of fun, but injuries and drowning do happen. Kids can disappear under water in the blink of an eye and lose consciousness in the time it takes to answer your phone. Be sure to watch them closely at the pool or beach! Every day in the US two children under 14 dies from unintentional drowning.

Learn more about how swimmers can stay safe. Get information to protect you and your family.

Prevent injury from wildlife

Washington has a lot of wildlife. Most encounters are harmless, but it's important to know what to do if animals bite or act aggressively. Check out the following resources for more information:

  • Surviving Wild Animal Attacks—Simple steps to avoid large predators when you can, and to defend yourself if they act aggressively.
  • Animals and Rabies—Information from the Washington State Department of Health.
    • Bites and scratches from bats are the most common cause of rabies in Washington.
    • Other wild, meat-eating mammals can also spread the disease.
    • So can pets and livestock, if they were bitten by an infected animal. Vaccinations are available for dogs, cats, and ferrets, and are required under state law.
    • If you suspect you may have been exposed to rabies, talk to your doctor immediately. Rabies is deadly, but 100% curable if treated in time.

Breathe safely

Poor air quality affects everyone's health. Learn what you can do to improve air quality by visiting our Outdoor Air Quality page.

Prevent weather and disaster-related injury

Protect your health during extreme weather events and other emergencies. To sign up for alerts, get more information, and make an emergency plan, visit our Emergency Preparedness page.

 

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