Summer claims highlight seasonal dangers

Icecream, jandals and long, hot days at the beach are quintessential parts of the classic Kiwi summer.

But they're also the source of hidden dangers - and hundreds of injury claims to the ACC.

People who slipped on spilt icecream, had a rusty nail through their jandal and burnt their feet on hot sand are responsible for some of the almost 440,000 claims to the corporation between December 1 2012 and February 28, 2013.

ACC injury prevention programme manager Megan Nagel said there were claims each year with a distinctively seasonal flavour, including allergic reactions to sunscreen, sand in the eyes, collapsing deckchairs, burns from the barbie and muscles pulled while playing backyard cricket.

"Beach-related injuries tend to be more frequent in summer, as you'd expect, while injuries caused by heaters are more common in winter.

"Summer can be a popular time for socialising and outside DIY, so we remind people to be responsible hosts if serving alcohol, and pay attention to safety when using things like power tools and ladders."

During summer people often throw themselves into physical activity after a "less than active" winter, she added.

"Building up your activity gradually and remembering to warm up before exercising can reduce your risk of injury."

Ms Nagel said falls were the number one year-round cause of injuries and reminded Kiwis to pay attention to hazards in the home such as loose rugs, spilled liquids and blown lightbulbs.

Autumn was the season that generated the most claims, followed by summer, winter and spring.

Seasonal injury claims last summer:

877 sand claims

521 barbecue claims

213 jandals claims

67 beach or backyard cricket claims

57 sunscreen claims

54 deck chairs claims

41 icecream claims


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