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Florida Tips for Safe Travel

At this time of year, many people opt to take advantage of off-season travel deals in order to take trips. While you may be traveling for pleasure, however, illness and injury can ruin your vacation and even endanger your life. There are many ways that you can avoid illness and injury while away from home:

1. Talk to your doctor and do your own travel research. Read about travel health risks at your destination and talk with your doctor about any vaccinations or medicine that you will need for your trip. Arrange to get all your shots, vaccinations and medicine in advance of your trip. Some treatments need to be taken ten days before you travel to be effective.

2. While traveling, wash your hands often with soap and water or a an alcohol-based hand gel that contains at least 60% alcohol. Washing your hands can help prevent salmonella and other ailments.

3. Watch out for food and water. Drink bottled water, carbonated drinks, or boiled water. Avoid open containers of drinks, tap water, fountains, and ice cubes — these can cause food poisoning. Eat only food that is completely cooked and only fruits and vegetables you have peeled. Avoid eating anything or buying any food products from poultry farms, bird markets, and other areas where live birds are raised.

4. Bring insect repellent if you are traveling to an area with ticks, mosquitoes, and other insects that are known disease carriers.

5. Avoid some of the common causes of traveler injury. Car accidents are a leading cause of deaths among travelers, so always take care to drive only with experienced drivers you trust. Swimming-related accidents are also a common personal injury among travelers. Be cautious when boating, diving, or swimming. Make certain that you swim with a friend, avoid dangerous swimming areas, and check water depth and safety before diving in.

6. Avoid handling animals while on vacation. Dog bites and bites from other animals can pass on many diseases, including rabies.