Life jackets, helmets, chainsaws, grills, sunscreen

  • Published
  • By Col. William H. Edwards, Jr.
  • 932nd Airlift Wing
OK, well at least you are probably
reading this next line
just to see where this is
going...but while you have probably heard
the first part of this list more times than you
can now count ( least without taking
your shoes off) have probably not
heard that last one very often.

Yes, it made this year's safety list of "things to look out
for" during the 2011 "Critical Days of Summer"
(CDS) - along with several other really
good ideas and reminders for all of us
to review as we start the long-awaited period
of "summer adventures!"
While most of us probably spent our
incredibly brief "spring" hiding in our basements
from the myriad of tornadoes that
recently besieged our communities (both
locally and afar), I am thankful to say that
our 932nd family escaped with only a few
instances of "material loss". Now that summer
has undeniably arrived in full force, it is
the right time to once again take inventory
of our "personal and family preparedness".

We have already had several days of
"triple-digit" heat indexes--and it's only
June--so hydrate!! Scott AFB has already
experienced two serious motorcycle accident
injuries leaving an AD member and a
Guardsman in convalescent status--and
one (non-military) fatality recently occurred
right outside the gate - PPE, stay alert, drive
smart and don't forget your PPE!!

So what's would probably be
easier to tell you what's NOT on the rest of
the list...but I do want to "foot stomp" a
couple more items before I run out of space
for this article. Statistically speaking...the
two most common causes of injury and/or
fatality during the CDS are personal motor
vehicle (PMV) accidents and drowning.

Needless to say, these two categories include
many varied opportunities for "cranial
disengagement"...DUI/DWI's and/or
excess speed lead the list for PMVs; and
failure to wear proper lifesaving devices (either
based on the activity or your ability) tops
the list for drowning; and we never seem to
make it through a summer without at least one
backyard grill "incident." So, while I absolutely
encourage each of you to "get out there and
do something" this summer, I also hope you
will keep common sense close by--so that
when the end of the summer finally arrives,
we will all have great memories of all the things
we were able to scratch off our bucket lists!
We have all been burning the candle at
both ends this past year (some of us burning it
in the middle as well!) and we have much to
show for our efforts. We still have a few more
tasks before us, but the heavy lifting is mostly
complete--and we can see that the light at
the end of the tunnel is NOT a train!

I applaud everyone for their service and
dedication to the 932nd because, without you,
we would not be as poised for success as we
are. For our deployed warriors, your sacrifice
can never receive enough recognition as
you leave friends and family behind and take
the fight to the enemy -we look forward to
your safe return and are always here to assist
with whatever you may need on this side of
the world!

Enjoy your summer--enjoy your families--play hard -- but be safe! You are
all invaluable assets in every sense of the word
- and the legacy of the 932nd is just getting
Thanks for all you do!

Col E.