Black Friday shopping has become a highly chaotic event for the American public. Nearly every store has huge sales for the holidays around Thanksgiving and the day after. It’s become a tradition for many to get up early on Black Friday and drive to their favorite stores with the best deals.
The problem is that masses of people are driving on the roads, walking in parking lots, and swarming through stores. With so many pedestrians and vehicles out at the same time, potential hazards are everywhere. Being out shopping for various items for several hours also poses its own risks.
It’s likely that you have employees who will be participating in the annual Black Friday festivities, so you will want to make sure they arrive back at work on Monday morning safe and sound. Send your employees these 5 Black Friday safety tips to help them keep safety at the front of their minds while they’re out in the chaos.
1. Drive Defensively
First thing’s first. You have to get to the store, and you’ll probably be driving there. Learning to drive defensively can help to minimize accidents on the road and in parking lots, whether you’re heading out at 4 a.m. or during normal business hours.
To drive defensively, you need to first minimize distractions. Eating, listening to music, talking, using your phone, and doing anything else that pulls your attention from the road are all examples of distracted driving.
Next, you need to maintain a safe distance from all other vehicles on the road because you never know how distracted or careless the other drivers may be. It’s a tough job keeping an eye on your own vehicle as well as all of the others around. In parking lots, this is much more challenging. Always move slowly and double check your mirrors for pedestrians and vehicles alike.
2. Leave the Kids at Home
Some parents love to include their kids in everything that they do, and that’s great. But Black Friday shopping can be tough on the kiddos, especially the younger ones. It’s best to leave them safe at home with relatives or a sitter so you don’t have to worry about their safety.
All sorts of things can go wrong if you’re busy shopping while you have a little one to look after.
With so many strangers around in close quarters, kids can esaily end up missing.
Parents busy loading vehicles can lose track of kids in vehicular traffic.
High excitement over rock bottom prices cause frenzies where kids can be injured.
3. Don’t Carry it All Alone
Whether you’re shopping for electronics, furniture, or clothing, you might need some help hauling the goods. Bring a friend or ask a store employee to help with large or heavy items—you don’t need a back injury during your shopping trip.
Something else that we’re all guilty of is trying to carry all of the bags in one trip. Even if you’re shopping for small items, they add up. Don’t overexert yourself by carrying too much. Make multiple trips, use a cart, or recruit some help.
4. Dress for the Weather
November can be a cold month for many states, and some stores might even have lines of shoppers waiting outside. If you’re not prepared for the cold weather, you’re creating more hazards for yourself.
Frostbite and hypothermia are very real concerns during inclement weather. Dress in layers and cover your hands, feet and ears well. It can be especially cold in the early hours of the morning before the sun rises. As the day progresses and warms up, you can take off some layers and leave items in the car.
If it’s icy or wet at all, you’ll want to wear sensible footwear to prevent slipping and falling. One of the easiest ways to get hurt is by falling. By taking measures ahead of time, you can minimize risks.
5. Prevent Fatigue
Get a good night’s sleep before you hit the stores in the morning. Being tired can make all of the other safety hazards even worse. Not only should you be well rested, but you should also be keeping your body healthy and functioning at full capacity by eating and drinking regularly. Bring some snacks or plan to stop for breakfast. Most food facilities near popular shopping centers are going to be pretty busy during this time, so bringing along some snacks is a smart idea.
As you can see, there are plenty of safety concerns during America’s favorite shopping holiday. Using these Black Friday safety tips can help to reduce accidents, but another great option is to just stay home and wait to shop on Cyber Monday.