Local summer camp focuses on safety during hot weather

MARSHALL COUNTY, KY — With another hot weekend on the way, the staff at Crossings Jonathan Creek told Local 6 how campers stay safe in the blistering weather.

Steven Huffine, the critical care nurse at the camp in Marshall County, Kentucky, said a typical summer week sees up to 800 campers. When our crew visited the campground on Friday, there were more than 200 campers enjoying water activities at Recreation Lake.

Liney Hoskins and Zoe Short, who came to the camp with members of their church, Twin Lakes Worship Center, said they enjoy jumping onto the water launch pad.

“Especially when my youth leader launched me. I mean, that was pretty exciting because man, it feels like you’re flying,” said Hoskins.

While the teens were having fun at the lake, staff members were watching for signs of heat-related issues.

“In weeks when we have like 800 or so individuals that come on property, I’ll treat anywhere from 10 to 20 students at a time throughout that whole week, you know, six or seven-day period,” explained Huffine. So it just depends. This week alone, I’ve seen about three individuals who definitely had heat exhaustion.”

To ensure that campers stay hydrated, the staff have set up several water stations around the campground. There was also a large cooler full of water bottles next to the lake, which was refilled four times in just an hour. In addition, Huffine said the staff encourages the campers to drink more water and less soda during their meals.

Huffine said the campers also alternate between outdoor and indoor activities.

“So they spend an hour outside, they really need to go inside, cool off for about 30 minutes or so,” said Huffine.

“We take a little bit of a break. And they give us that time to cool off so we don’t — we’re not ‘go, go, go’ all the time,” Hoskins added.

Huffine said when he sees campers showing signs of stress, he’d approach them and take action.

“We want to get them into an air-conditioned environment, get them cooled down. We get some cold packs on their back, get some ice packs on them, get them to go ahead and start sipping some water along the way,” said Huffine. “Now, if they’re extremely dehydrated, we try to get as much sodium into them as we can so they can absorb water. You know, water follows sodium so we try to get them where they can intake a little bit of that, take some Gatorade if we can. But the main thing is, we don’t want to slam it. We want them to just take it slow.”

To learn more about heat-related illnesses; click here.

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