From the Fire Chief: Be a Flu Fighter… Your Best Defense!

During a hazardous materials incident, as firefighters and first responders we isolate the area and deny entry to keep it contained. Like a brush fire and blowing embers, germs spread like wildfire. The same goes if you have the flu. Both are toxic and pose an unreasonable risk to our health, safety and environment. Isolate yourself and stay away from others because it spreads through contamination.

Influenza updates: Flu activity is high in the U.S. and expected to continue for weeks. Everyone six months of age and older should get a flu vaccine each season. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention reported this week that there have been twice as many pediatric flu deaths so far this year compared to the same time last year. What’s more, a second strain of the virus that more commonly infects younger people is becoming widespread, the CDC reported Friday.

Nothing is more disgusting than to see people sick in the gym, restaurants, stores, offices or at work—even many of those who serve us are sick with the flu. And we wonder why it’s an epidemic.

The flu can spread up to six feet away. This happens when flu sufferers cough, sneeze or talk, or when a caretaker or family member touches something that has flu virus on it and then touches their own mouth or nose. You’ve been exposed to the hazardous contaminants at that point.

Hand washing is one of the best ways to stay healthy during the flu season.  

What are some ways to protect yourself? 

• Avoid close contact with sick people. 

• Stay at home when you are sick. 

• Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing. 

• Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. 

• Drink fluids even when you feel well. 

• Wash surfaces that are shared with others such as keyboards, telephones, exercise equipment and TV remotes. 

• Exercise regularly.

Be part of the solution, not the problem!

For additional flu tips, visit:

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The Malibu Times is the first newspaper in Malibu, serving the community since 1946.

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