National Safety Month - How to get involved week-by-week
In 1996, the National Safety Council established June as National Safety Month.
Throughout June 2008, National Safety Month activities will address the most significant
reasons for unintentional injuries and deaths in the American workplace, on the road and
in the home and community. Each week of the month will focus on a different topic to
increase awareness of work and home situations that are often overlooked. The Personnel
Cabinet is set to make a difference with National Safety Month.
Currently, after years of decline, the rate of unintentional injuries and deaths in
the United States has risen to new and unacceptable levels. Motor vehicle collisions,
poisoning from unintentional drug overdoses, and falls remain the three leading causes of
The first week’s focus is on Emergency Preparedness. Every home and
workplace needs to prepare for various emergencies, including Severe Weather &
Natural Disasters– hurricanes, tornadoes, floods and earthquakes. Tornadoes have
already affected many and in April we were reminded that earthquakes do indeed happen
The second week focus is Distracted Driving. Nearly 80% of automobile
accidents are caused by driver inattention. Engaging in tasks not related to driving can
lead to disaster. The use of wireless devices – dialing, talking, listening, texting, GPS –
is the most common type of distraction. Other distractions could include reaching for an
object or the stereo, eating/drinking, personal hygiene activities or even passengers.
The third week focuses on Poisoning Prevention. Household products such as
cosmetics, personal care products, cleaning solutions, over the counter medications,
prescriptions, topical ointments/cream, and plants are leading causes of nonfatal
poisoning involving children under six. Fatal poisonings involving adults occur mostly
with prescription drugs as opposed to illegal or over the counter drugs. People must be
aware of drug interactions and should always ask or inform a pharmacist of all
medications they are taking including over the counter drugs. This occurs most often
with those over the age of 65.
The fourth and final week focuses on Fall Prevention. Work related falls are the
second leading cause of death after motor vehicle accidents. Falls are also the second
leading cause of non fatal work injuries after overexertion. Falls are the leading cause of
nonfatal injuries requiring medical attention in every age group.