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Health and Safety
In an emergency dial 911.
Let someone know your trip route, destination, and estimated time of return. Before setting out, make sure your vehicle is in good condition. Carry water, a jack, tools, and towrope or chain. Keep an eye on your gas gauge and try to keep the needle above half. Stay on main roads, and watch out for wildlife, horses, and cattle.
Drink at least a gallon of water a day (three gallons if you're hiking or otherwise exerting yourself). Dress in layered clothing and wear comfortable, sturdy shoes and a hat. Keep snacks, sunscreen, and a first-aid kit on hand. If you have a headache or feel dizzy or nauseous, you could be suffering from dehydration. Get out of the sun immediately and drink plenty of water. Dampen your clothing to lower your body temperature. Do not enter abandoned mine tunnels or shafts, of which there are hundreds in the Mojave Desert. The structures may be unstable, and there may be hidden dangers such as pockets of bad air. Avoid canyons during rainstorms. Floodwaters can quickly fill up dry riverbeds and cover or wash away roads. Never place your hands or feet where you can't see them: rattlesnakes, scorpions, and black widow spiders may be hiding there.
BLM Rangers (760/326-7000. www.blm.gov/ca.)
Barstow Community Hospital (820 E. Mountain View St., Barstow, CA, 92311. 760/256-1761. www.barstowhospital.com.)
Northern Inyo Hospital (150 Pioneer La., Bishop, CA, 92514. 760/873-5811. www.nih.org.)
San Bernardino County Sheriff (760/256-1796 in Barstow; 760/733-4448 in Baker.)
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