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Every Second Counts: Plan Two Ways Out


“Every Second Counts: Plan Two Ways Out” calls all of us to be aware of fire safety measures in the home.

According to the NFPA, “the synthetic fibers used in modern home furnishings, along with the fact that newer homes tend to be built with more open spaces and unprotected lightweight construction, all contribute to an increased rate at which fire burns.”

There are a variety of ways to take steps to make sure your home is fire safe, including:

  • Draw a map of your home with all members of your household, marking two exits from each room and a path to the outside from each exit.
  • Practice your home fire drill twice a year. Conduct one at night and one during the day with everyone in your home, and practice using different ways out.
  • Teach children how to escape on their own in case you can’t help them.
  • Make sure the number of your home is clearly marked and easy for the fire department to find.
  • Close doors behind you as you leave – this may slow the spread of smoke, heat, and fire.
  • Once you get outside, stay outside. Never go back inside a burning building.

Fire safety is important for everyone, especially for educators who interact with children on a daily basis. It is important for children to understand the dangers of fires, and to work with their family to devise a plan of escape. The NFPA website has many educational resources for schools including a fire prevention week banner, a coloring sheet, and a video series with Sparky the dog.

Check out the NFPA website where you will find fast facts about fires, a fire prevention week quiz, and can live chat with someone from the association to ask questions. Encourage your friends, family, and neighbors to take the quiz to test their knowledge on the danger of fires today. Ensure that the smoke alarms in your home function properly. If you do not have smoke alarms, install them as soon as possible.


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Mom saves choking daughter using technique she’d just learned in CPR class

“We could not have asked for a better outcome,” the sheriff said.

A Florida mom saved her 14-month-old daughter’s life thanks to the skills she learned during a CPR class hosted by the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office.

Back in January, the sheriff’s office hosted the class for family members of sheriff’s office employees.

Sarah Herrera, who’s father is a corporal, attended the class.

Recently, Herrera was feeding her daughter dinner when the child began choking on a piece of chicken.

Herrera said she immediately remembered a technique taught in her class. She placed her toddler’s stomach down and began hitting her back to dislodge the food. It worked! In a press release Tuesday afternoon, the sheriff’s office said Herrera reached out to HCSO to express her gratitude for the class.

We all hope to never be in a position where we must use CPR on a loved one or even a stranger, but I believe that having those life-saving skills, just in case, is essential. That is why I chose to offer CPR classes not only to employees of the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office but their families as well,” said Sheriff Chad Chronister. “This is a situation where knowing CPR and having the confidence to perform it saved the life of Ms. Herrera’s little girl. We could not have asked for a better outcome.”

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In Memory of Many, In Honor of All

Just Around The Corner – June is National Safety Month

Now, more than ever, safety is crucial both inside and outside the workplace, which is why the National Safety Council will still be recognizing National Safety Month® in June. Observed annually by NSC, the nation’s leading nonprofit safety advocate, National Safety Month focuses on saving lives and preventing injuries, from the workplace to anyplace.

Given the current state of the world, the month will look a little different than past years. Instead of focusing on a single topic each week, we will provide real-time, relevant resources on a variety of topics for keeping workers safe in our new normal. Sign up now and we’ll notify you when materials – on pressing topics from ergonomics to mental health – are ready.

Get Free Materials

Get Free Materials

Spread the word! Free poster, tip sheets and more.

Member-exclusive Materials

Share the Safety Message in June

This year, NSC will shine a spotlight on pressing topics, including, but not limited to:

  • Mental Health
  • Ergonomics
  • Building a Safety Culture
  • Driving

This year’s public materials will include a poster, tip sheets, articles, social media graphics and more! NSC members get everything the public gets, plus 5-Minute Safety Talks, additional posters, videos and so much more.

Donate in Honor of Someone Who Keeps You Safe

Honor those who keep you safe with a donation to NSC. Your donation will help support the National Safety Council SAFER effort, created to address the safety needs of the nation’s workforce now and in a post-pandemic environment. Through this effort, NSC will provide employers with data-driven tools, resources and recommendations to ensure the safety of every workplace across the country.

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Quick-thinking Boston police officer uses CPR to revive infant who wasn’t breathing

Boston Police officer Owen Murray who performed lifesaving CPR on an infant girl in Roxbury Sunday night with assistance from officer Taylor Green.

Boston police officers Owen Murray and Taylor Green were heading back to the station Sunday night after a routine call. It had been a typical night so far.

Then, around 10:45 p.m., they got a call. An infant was in respiratory distress and wasn’t breathing at a home on Bragdon Street in Roxbury. The officers responded swiftly.

“On all the calls, you try to get there as fast as possible,” said Murray, a six-year officer. “But whenever I hear a kid’s involved, I try to get there even faster. I really wasn’t thinking.”

Once at the home, Murray and Green sprinted up to the second floor and came upon several family members who were screaming. The mother handed her 1-year-old daughter to Murray. The atmosphere was frantic, Green said.

The infant’s eyes and mouth were open, her skin pale. She wasn’t breathing; she was “lifeless,” Murray said. Instinctively, the officer put the girl in position and performed CPR, resuscitating her in moments and saving her life.

Boston police officer Taylor Green assisted officer Owen Murray, who performed lifesaving CPR on an infant girl in Roxbury Sunday night.

Boston police officer Taylor Green assisted officer Owen Murray, who performed lifesaving CPR on an infant girl in Roxbury Sunday night.MATTHEW J. LEE/GLOBE STAFF

“After a few seconds, the baby started crying,” Murray said. “She immediately gave me a hug and rested her head on my shoulder.”

“We’re just glad she’s OK,” Green said.

Soon after, the girl was brought to Boston Children’s Hospital for evaluation. Murray hasn’t heard from the infant’s mother or hospital yet, but he’s relieved. Without quick action, the outcome likely would have been much more grim.

It’s a feeling he knows well. Several years ago, his son, who was 1½ years old at the time, began choking on food. Murray performed CPR and saved his life.

My training definitely kicked in. I didn’t freak out or anything, it just kind of kicked in immediately,” Murray said of the eventful Monday night. “It definitely saved my son’s life as well.”

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Who Makes the Call on Safety Training?

The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that the United States experienced 5,250 fatal workplace injuries in 2018. The year prior, preventable work injuries cost the U.S. economy $161.5 billion, according to an estimate from the National Safety Council. These statistics make clear the importance of safety for organizations and, therefore, safety training. The top benefit of safety training is reducing these tragic and costly incidents.

One essential question for any safety training program is who should do what. Who should be accountable for determining an organization’s safety needs? What about developing safety content or choosing supplier content? What about delivering safety training? Should the answers to these questions change for training that deals with different types of training?


For Safety Training: Protecting Employees and Organizations, there are four types of safety training.

  • Employee safety: related to the performance of jobs and the use of facilities and equipment
  • Workplace safety: related to emergencies in the workplace such as disasters or crime
  • Customer safety: related to the physical safety of customers
  • Digital and information safety: related to employee or customer data and cybersecurity.

Determining Safety Needs

Organizations were most likely to hold a dedicated safety department accountable for determining safety needs for all categories of safety other than digital and information safety (Table: Who Determines Safety Needs). They were most likely to entrust their IT departments by determining safety needs for digital and information safety. Legal, governance, risk management, or compliance departments were second-most likely to be accountable for determining safety needs for all categories of safety other than employee safety. HR departments were most likely to do so for employee safety.

Safety Training Table 1.png

According to Errick Currie, a logistics transportation Manager for Domino’s who oversees safety for truck drivers that deliver supplies to the company’s stores in the United States and Canada, which department makes the final call on determining needs is of limited consequence. In an interview for the report, he said that “ensuring that every employee has a voice” about safety matters much more. “Every organization is different,” he explained, “but what’s important is that you put the onus on individuals to bring any issues forward.”

Developing or Selecting Safety Training Content

When it came to developing safety content or selecting it from suppliers, organizations again were most likely to turn to a dedicated safety department for all categories other than digital and information safety, which was most likely to fall to IT. However, talent development was the department second-most likely to oversee the development or selection of content. This was a notable difference from determining safety needs, for which talent development was least likely of any department to be responsible.

In his interview for the report, Currie saw some advantages of relying on talent development professionals to develop or select safety content—specifically, their knowledge of best practices in adult learning and familiarity with content tools. “They know all the different practices other companies use and the different tools that translate to the field,” he said.

Safety Training Table 2.png

Delivering Safety Content

For employee safety, workplace safety, and customer safety, organizations most often relied on trainers from a dedicated safety department to deliver safety training, followed by a trainer from the talent development department. Digital and information safety training was equally likely to be delivered by a member of the IT department or with no instructor at all.

According to Currie, having a specialized professional, such as someone from the talent development or safety department, deliver an organization’s live, instructor-led safety training makes the content more credible. To explain the difference between having one of these individuals handle the delivery rather than a manager, he drew an analogy to parents cautioning their children. “As kids grow up, they often don’t take warnings from their parents very seriously,” he said. “When people get comfortable with their managers, the same thing can happen.” Meanwhile, he noted that bringing in a safety expert to deliver training, “shows that you’re willing to have another voice, another advocate, to come in to make the message resonate.”

Safety Training Table 3.png

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National Nurses Week: Freebies and discounts for health care workers May 6 -12

Saving A Life With CPR

NORTON — Town resident Chris Vittorini has been recognized for helping save a man’s life, but he doesn’t consider himself a hero.

“Everything happens for a reason and I was there for a reason to help this guy out,” Vittorini, 46, said Wednesday.

The fire department on Tuesday gave Vittorini the Citizen Lifesaving Award for performing CPR on the unconscious man, despite the emphasis that’s been placed on social distancing in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

The 50-year-old victim was taken to Sturdy Memorial Hospital by local firefighters, who cited Vittorini’s efforts with helping them to revive the man.

The victim, whose name and medical condition was not disclosed, was alert and talking by the time the crew got to the hospital, according to fire Capt. Jason Robbins.

Early intervention with CPR by the public plays an important role in a patient’s survival, fire officials said.

A person’s chances of surviving a cardiac arrest decrease by 10 percent every minute that CPR is not done.

Recalling his role, Vittorini said he had just driven out of his home on Strawstone Lane and onto Oak Street the night of April 19 when he saw three people standing on the side of the road with a man lying on his back.

“I turned around, parked on the side of the road and ran down to them,” Vittorini said.

One of the men had a cellphone in his hand so Vittorini assumed he called 911, but he remembers telling him to call 911 anyway as he looked at the victim.

“He was flat on his back. Lifeless,” Vittorini said, adding that the man’s face had turned blue and purple.

Vitorrini said he tilted the man’s head to help him breathe and started compressions on the man’s chest.

His adrenaline flowing, Vittorini said all he could think about was just concentrating on giving the man CPR.

“Honestly, I wanted to save his life. I wasn’t going to stop until the paramedics got there,” he said.

Robbins said Vittorini did CPR for seven minutes before the rescue crew arrived to take over.

“Seven minutes feels like a lifetime when you are doing CPR,” Robbins said.

At the same time firefighters got the call, they were called to go to Taunton for a fire and also a car fire on Interstate 495 in Norton, he said.

With all the concern most people have about being infected with the highly-contagious virus, Robbins said Vittorini “really stepped up.”

If he had not stopped and performed CPR on the victim, Robbins said, the man “could have passed away.”

Vittorini said he knew how to perform CPR from his days as a Boy Scout and from helping his 19-year-old daughter, a fire department intern, study to be an EMT.

He brushed off the notion of being a hero and focused on the man he helped.

“I’m just glad he made it. I was just in the right place at the right time,” Vittorini said.


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Fire Training In The Workplace – What You Need To Know

Fires destroy property, cause injuries, and take lives

One of the key strategies for maintaining a safe workplace and preventing fires is fire safety training.

With proper training, workers can eliminate fire hazards and respond quickly and efficiently if a fire breaks out. Without proper training, a small occurrence can quickly grow to become a major incident with devastating outcomes.

Everyone is at risk if there is a fire. However, there are some workers who may be at greater risk because of when or where they work, or because they’re not familiar with the premises or the equipment at the worksite.

Fire safety training can teach workers how to recognize fire hazards, conduct a fire safety risk assessment, prevent a workplace fire, and respond if a fire occurs.



Recognizing Fire Hazards

Fire safety training begins by identifying the basic properties of fire. All fires start when heat (a source of ignition) comes into contact with fuel (anything that burns) and oxygen is present. To prevent a fire the goal is to keep sources of ignition and fuel apart.



Conducting a Fire Safety Risk Assessment

The fire safety risk assessment helps identify what a workplace needs to do to prevent a fire and keep people safe. The assessment looks at:

1. Emergency routes and exits
2. Fire detection and warning systems
3. Fire fighting equipment
4. Removal or safe storage of dangerous substances
5. The emergency fire evacuation plan
6. The needs of vulnerable people
7. Communication with employees and others on the premises
8. Staff fire safety training

A fire safety risk assessment is the first step in identifying fire hazards. It also identifies the people at risk, state of emergency preparedness, and effectiveness of controls in the workplace. With the information from the risk assessment employers can make improvements in their fire safety plans and eliminate or reduce risks. Employers can also ensure appropriate training is provided to workers.



Preventing Workplace Fires

Fire safety training teaches workers how to prevent fires. If workers are aware of the best ways to prevent fires, they can contribute significantly to a safer workplace.


Tips to prevent fires in the workplace include:

1. Keep the workplace clean. Common litter and construction debris act as fuel for fire. Clutter may block access to exits and emergency equipment.
2. Smoke only in designated areas and extinguish smoking materials safely. Never smoke in storerooms or chemical storage areas.
3. Mark hazards and potential fire risks with clear, visible signage. Post emergency telephone numbers and the company address by the telephone in all work areas.
4. Keep machinery cleaned and properly lubricated to prevent overheating and friction sparks.
5. Place oily rags in a covered metal container. This waste must be properly disposed of on a regular basis.
6. Have faulty wiring and malfunctioning electrical equipment repaired promptly. Never attempt electrical repairs unless you are qualified and authorized.
7. Avoid running electrical cords or wires under rugs and carpets or near a heat source; keep them out of doorways where they can become worn.
8. Maintain open access to all electrical control panels. Material or equipment stored in front of the panels could delay power shutdowns in emergency situations.
9. Use and store chemicals safely. Read the labels and the Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) to learn about flammability and other fire hazards. Provide adequate ventilation when using and storing these substances.
10. Be aware of possible ignition sources when working in potentially explosive atmospheres, such as those containing flammable liquid vapors or fine particles (e.g. vehicle paint spraying or grain flour). Use non-sparking tools and control static electricity as required.
11. Never block sprinklers, firefighting equipment, or emergency exits. Observe clearances when stacking materials.
12. Learn how to properly use a fire extinguisher. Know where fire extinguishers are located and which extinguishers to use for the specific type of fire.


How to Respond if a Fire Starts

It’s important that everyone in the workplace is prepared for a fire. Workers need to know what to do in case a fire occurs and how to work together to effectively stop the advance of a fire.

Through fire safety training, workers learn:

The company’s emergency plan
The worker’s role in the emergency plan
How to activate the fire alarm so the building occupants can escape
To leave the area immediately, closing all doors behind them
Where designated muster areas are located outside the building
What to do if they encounter heat or smoke upon exiting
How to fight a small fire with a portable extinguisher

Workers and employers need to take fire drills seriously and learn from them to improve response. By practicing what to do in a fire, flaws in the emergency plan can be revealed and those faults can then be addressed. Practice also builds confidence and helps keep everyone calm in the event of a real fire.



The Use of Extinguishers

Most workplaces contain portable fire extinguishers. Fire extinguishers can only put out small, contained fires, such as a fire in a wastebasket. Extinguishers in different workplaces may or may not be suitable for dealing with grease or electrical fires.

Workers that haven’t received training in the proper use of portable extinguishers should not attempt to fight a fire.
Through training workers learn to never fight a fire:

if the fire is large or spreading
if their escape route may be blocked by the spread of fire
if they are not trained in the correct use of the extinguisher or are unsure of the type of fire

If workers do fight a fire they should:

call 9-1-1 first
ensure everyone has evacuated or is leaving the area or building



Everyone is responsible for preventing fires in the workplace – employers and employees alike.
In addition to possible injury and loss of life, a serious fire can close down a workplace resulting in significant job losses. It is possible to reduce the threat of fire to people and property by teaching everyone to work together to prevent fires with comprehensive fire safety training.


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Why Workers Prefer Online Health and Safety Training

Why Safety Training is Important

EHS training is crucial for a good safety culture. In the US, 99 workers on average die each WEEK from workplace accidents.

Let’s take a quick look at the further benefits of EHS training:

  • Keeps health and safety at the forefront
  • Helps avoid the financial costs and lost production time of accidents
  • Builds a reputation as a safe employer
  • Happy workers

Despite its importance, health and safety training is regarded by some as dull and boring.

Workers with this mindset are hard to engage. Unfortunately, it is these workers who are likely to put themselves or their colleagues in danger.

So, how do you engage workers with workplace health and safety?

One way is to make health and safety fun by introducing gamification.

Another way is to introduce eLearning and blended learning to your safety training program. But first, what’s the difference between eLearning and traditional learning methods?

Traditional Learning vs eLearning and Blended Training

Traditional learning = teacher-led sessions with students sitting and listening to the lecture.
eLearning = learning completed online. In other words, electronic learning.
Blended learning = a mixture of traditional and eLearning approaches.


Traditional Learning

If you’re over a certain age, this type of learning will take you back to your school days. We all remember sitting looking at the clock and waiting for the bell to ring as the teacher droned on.

As a result, some of us associate traditional learning methods with our school days. In other words, we lose interest in the subject quickly.

However, that’s not to say there are no upsides to traditional learning methods:



Even though it’s a much newer form of education, eLearning has taken the training and education market by storm. So much so, a massive 98% of companies plan to use eLearning training methods by 2020.



Blended Learning

Arguably, blended learning is the best of both worlds. Sometimes referred to as hybrid learning, blended learning combines classroom instruction, apps, webinars, and eLearning for a well-rounded, progressive learning structure.


Online Safety Training for Workers

Do workers prefer traditional and online teaching methods?

There are many reasons learners enjoy eLearning. For example, short courses do not interfere with the working day. Courses are digestible, memorable and engaging. Best of all, online learning content is user-friendly.

Moreover, we live in a technologically advanced world. In the developed world, 81% of people have access to the internet. An estimated 5 billion people have mobile devices.

Looking at those numbers, it makes sense to place learning content on a platform the majority of us use every day.

Look at it this way: 50% of workers forget what they learned in an hour. We all know the importance of safety training, and what can happen when it’s forgotten.

It’s your job as an EHS professional to ensure the safety of workers. Is eLearning the answer?


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