Spring break is one week away for the Maclay community, and there is a great amount of excitement to finally get to that break from tests and homework. With Covid-19 concerns dying down, everyone is eager to go out and travel. Even with all of this enthusiasm, it is still extremely important to stay safe in every way possible. From using sunscreen to staying with a group, you need to make sure to always pay attention and stay safe during spring break.

People love to go out and party during spring break, but they do not need to get drunk in order to have a good time. One of the biggest issues during spring break is drinking. If you are under the age of 21, you should not be participating in drinking in the first place. Even if you are of legal age, you must drink safely. According to East Central University, 98% of people injured during spring break were intoxicated. Some ways to stay safe while drinking are to not drink and drive, limit the amount of alcohol you consume, do not drink on an empty stomach and do not leave your drink unattended. Even if you are sober, you must be aware of other people who may be drunk, whether it’s when you’re driving or just walking with some friends. 

One of the most popular places to attend during spring break is the beach. When going to the beach, people love to lay out in the sun and tan. It does not matter how much you want to tan or how easily you burn, you must wear sunscreen. By wearing SPF 15 or higher, you are already reducing your risk of getting melanoma and squamous cell carcinoma. UV rays are no joke. They can cause skin cancer, eye damage, immune system suppression and wrinkles. With all of the issues associated with the sun and UV rays, it is much easier to just put on sunscreen and have fun rather than worrying about getting burnt.

When traveling during spring break, make sure to stay with a group of people that you know and are close. It’s also crucial to watch your surroundings at all times, especially during the night. In 2016, a women got sexually assulted on the Panama City Beach during her spring break. This is the sad reality that people need to be aware of when going on spring break alone. A good way to try and prevent this from happening is to always be with someone that you know, preferably a big group of people. Strangers tend to be extremely friendly while they are on spring break. Try to not give out too much personal information to anybody you don’t know. You may even want to try to refrain from posting pictures on social media until you get home.

Some people may argue that spring break is the time to let loose and have more fun than usual. Even though spring break is supposed to be fun and relaxing, you still need to be more careful than usual. During spring break, fatal car accidents are more common, there are more boating and jet skiing accidents that cause severe brain damage and drowning accidents are all too common. Due to these alarming statistics, spring break is more than just having fun. You need to take care of yourself and make sure that you are in a safe environment as well.

Spring break is a notorious week for partying, hanging out with friends and going to the beach. There is no reason you can’t have a good time during spring break, but there should always be parameters set ahead of time. As long as everyone understands how to stay safe during the break, there will be less opportunities for anything to go wrong. Have fun soaking up the sun, and stay safe!