Outdoor Safety Tips

Spending time outdoors and enjoying local parks and trails is one of the highlights of living in Chester County.

Follow these guidelines to stay healthy and safe while visiting Chester County parks:


Stay Safe in the Sun

  • Apply sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher at least 15 minutes before going outdoors. 
  • Check the UV index to see how intense the sun will be. Visit the Environmental Protection Agency website or your local weather channel for the UV index in your area. Stay indoors or seek shade on days when the UV index is high. Go outdoors in early morning or late afternoon when the sun is lower in the sky. 
  • Wear a hat, sunglasses, and light/loose clothing. 
  • Drink plenty of water or other non-alcoholic, caffeine-free beverages to stay hydrated.

Prevent Tick and Mosquito Bites

  • Apply insect repellent on exposed skin. Choose a repellent containing DEET, picaridin, IR3535, oil of lemon eucalyptus, or para-menthane-diol.
    • Apply sunscreen first, then insect repellent. Do not use a combination product, as sunscreen and repellent should be applied in different amounts.
    • Do NOT use insect repellent on babies younger than 2 months old.
    • Do NOT use products containing oil of lemon eucalyptus or para-menthane-diol on children younger than 3 years old.
    • Do NOT apply insect repellent onto a child’s hands, eyes, mouth, and cut or irritated skin.

  • Wear boots, long socks, pants, a long-sleeved shirt and a hat with your hair up.
    • Clothing and gear treated with permethrin or permethrin spray for clothing is available for purchase. Read and follow product information carefully to determine if this is a solution for you.
    • Do NOT use permethrin products directly on skin. They are intended to treat clothing.
  • Walk in the middle of trails and avoid tall grass or brush.
  • Do not sit in areas where ticks hide: the ground, stone walls, leaf piles, wood piles, or fallen logs.
  • Check for ticks daily. Ticks typically latch onto dark, moist places, like the nape of the neck, ears, armpits, belly button, groin, and behind the knees. Remove clothing and shower within 1-2 hours of outdoor activity. 
  • Protect your pets. Check them for ticks daily and speak with your veterinarian about the best repellent option for your pet. Do NOT use any product on pets unless it is specifically made for pets.