DoD

May 31, 2013

Hagel stresses summer safety in message to Department

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel urged servicemembers, civilian employees and their families to enjoy the upcoming summer, but to do so safely.

In a message to all Defense Department activities, Hagel emphasized the need to make good decisions during a time of year that resulted in more than 80 percent of the department’s noncombat deaths in 2012.

Here is the text of the secretary’s message:

The summer months are often a high point of our year as we take a well-deserved vacation and spend time with family and friends. The summer allows an opportunity to relax and refresh. However, many of the activities we pursue during our vacation time put us at risk for accidents that have potentially serious consequences.

As you drive to and from vacation destinations, remember that 81 percent of the non-combat fatalities in 2012 total took place over the summer. Last summer, 80 service members died in motor vehicle collisions; 27 in 4-wheel vehicles, 47 while riding motorcycles, 4 were pedestrians and 2 were bicyclists. These fatalities occurred in spite of state laws and Department of Defense policies requiring the use of seatbelts while in a car and protective gear while riding motorcycles and bicycles.

An untold number of deaths resulted from fatigue — deaths preventable by proper trip planning and fatigue management while driving. All military leaders must emphasize how important it is for everyone in our DOD community to follow these simple precautions while traveling on our nation’s roads.

Some of you will enjoy water activities such as swimming, snorkeling, scuba diving, or water skiing. Sadly, six service members died while participating in water-related activities last summer. It is important to follow swimming area rules and to be aware of the hidden dangers inherent in participating in water activities.

Alcohol is all too often a component in these tragic accidents. Recognize the risks and make good decisions. We all know that alcohol, even in small quantities, impairs our decision-making and is often a significant factor in many accidents. Therefore, before taking our first sip, we need to remember never to drink and drive. Plan and always think before acting.

We all must do everything we can to be safer this summer. Each of us must do our part to keep everyone around us safe off-duty, as we do on-duty. Fundamental military lessons of working together, exercising leadership, focusing on the mission, and having the courage to say no to a risky situation are all essential to enjoying the summer and returning to your units.

I want to thank each of you for your service to this nation. You serve so that all Americans can be safe and free. I wish each of you a safe and enjoyable summer.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
(Official U.S. Air Force photo)

Knowing the facts: National American Indian Heritage Month

(Official U.S. Air Force photo) Maj. Gen. Clarence L. Tinker was the highest ranking officer of Native-American ancestry and the first general lost in action during World War II. November is National American Indian Heritage Mo...
 
 

VA implements second phase of Choice Card Program

Washington, DC – The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) today announced that it began mailing Veterans Choice Cards on Nov. 17 to Veterans currently waiting more than 30-days from their preferred date or the date that is medically determined by their physician for an appointment at a VA facility. “VA continues to focus on implementation...
 
 

Red Cross shares top safety tips for Thanksgiving

Millions of people will travel to spend their Thanksgiving holiday with loved ones and the American Red Cross has steps they can follow to help make sure they have a safe trip. The holiday is also a time when cooks spend a lot of time in the kitchen and there are tips they can use...
 

 

Officials Highlight Health, Wellness Resources for Military Families

WASHINGTON – As efforts continue to strengthen service members and their families, Pentagon officials held a Bloggers Roundtable to highlight the myriad resources available to tackle the unique military and transitional challenges those who serve may face. Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Military Community and Family Policy Rosemary Freitas Williams, Marine Corps Sgt. Maj....
 
 
HBI

Tips for getting enough healthy protein in your diet

At a time when over a third of American adults are obese and childhood obesity rates are rising exponentially, more Americans are looking for meat alternatives in their dining choices. In fact, close to 16 million Americans are...
 
 

AF closes FY14 force management programs

WASHINGTON (AFNS) — Airmen who met the service’s reduction in force board were notified of the board’s results Nov. 19, bringing the fiscal year 2014 force management programs to an end. The RIF board selected 354 captains and majors across the Air Force for non-retention, half of the number the service previously projected it would...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin