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Front Page » May 27, 2003 » Opinion » Safety is for all of us
Published 4,166 days ago

Safety is for all of us


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By KEN LARSON
Sun Advocate publisher

There are designated days, weeks or months for almost everything imaginable. Some make perfect sense and are coordinated with national health issues or critical human rights causes that bring awareness and understanding. There are literally thousands of these designations and some of the more recognized weeks include fire safety week, school lunch week, and freedom of speech day.

Some questionable days include national hot dog month, nude recreation week, and kiss-and-make-up day. Let me assure you the list of these kinds of days goes on and on.

I seldom read through the lists but this week a news release crossed my desk that announced the designation of June as national safety month. I am sure I could editorialize on a hundred designations but safety awareness is important to all of us.

The Utah Safety Council is encouraging preparedness in our lives and wants to help Americans prevent injuries on the roads, in homes, communities and workplaces.

National Safety Month presents the approach to preparedness with the theme, Four Words, Four Weeks, For Life. The four words are knowledge, action, dedication and community. These reflect the focus of safety leadership. The organization figures that in the four weeks of June citizens should concentrate on a specific area in each of those time periods, namely driving safety, home and community safety, preparedness and workplace safety. The council reminds us that safety is not just for national safety, it's for life.

The first week in June focuses on driver distractions. Topics to consider include safety measures to help Americans avoid traffic incidents caused by driver inattention, fatigue, cell phone use and other distractions. I talked to Georgina Nowak from the health department this week and she commented that locally we have a big problem with driver fatigue. There are entire sections of I-70 through Emery county, where nearly every crash recorded has been caused by drivers falling asleep. Because of the long stretches of open highway in this area and the type of employment that requires extra hours and additional driving, many people are involved in crashes due to this factor.

The second week in June is designated as home and community safety. It focuses on the elderly and their problems with slips and falls. The Utah Safety Council is providing tips and other resources to the elderly and those who care about them to decrease the incidence of these life-threatening accidents.

The third week will focus on emergency preparedness. During this week people are reminded of the importance to individuals, families and organizations of preparing for emergencies by learning first aid, CPR and AED procedures and by developing emergency plans for homes, buildings and public facilities. Locally Price City and Carbon County are taking strong leadership roles in developing plans.

The final focus for June will be on safety leadership. The awareness during this period will be on helping organizational leaders, managers and supervisors to understand the important role they have in protecting the safety and health of their employees and their families.

Safety is a critical issue and becomes more and more of a concern. Take the time this month to ask more questions, get more involved, work with your families and co-workers on safety plans and become an involved citizen.


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May 27, 2003
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