Fort Belvoir, Virginia –
Those in the Washington, D.C., area should be aware of heightened security due to this year’s "Salute to America" celebration on July 4th as President Donald Trump is set to honor the country's armed forces with military demonstrations and flyovers in addition to other festivities and the annual fireworks display.
In a May message from Defense Logistics Agency Director Army Lt. Gen. Darrell Williams, he encouraged employees to be safe while traveling and participating in summer activities:
“At DLA, our people are at the center of everything we do, delivering phenomenal support to our warfighters and our nation all year long,” he wrote. “Leisure time is important to a high-performing, resilient workforce – and so is safety.”
Williams offered the following tips to help employees and their loved ones stay incident-free while enjoying active summer months:
- While driving on vacation road trips, take frequent breaks to avoid fatigue, be aware of changing traffic patterns and watch for signs of impaired drivers. For those driving closer to home, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that most accidents occur during rush hour between 3-6 p.m.
- The warm weather also draws people to swimming pools and beaches – and the risk of drowning. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, drowning is the fifth leading cause of unintentional injury death for people of all ages, and the second leading cause of injury death for children ages 1-14. Observe swimming safety rules wherever you are, and never leave small children unattended around water.
- Fireworks celebrating the July 4th holiday are another summer safety hazard. According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, approximately 12,900 fireworks-related injuries and eight firework-related deaths were reported in 2017, the last time these statistics were published. If you are enjoying a professional fireworks display, stay in designated areas and have an escape route in the event of misfires or malfunctions. When lighting fireworks at home, keep a bucket of water or garden hose handy to douse lingering sparks. Light fireworks one at a time, then move back quickly. For more fireworks safety tips, visit the CPSC website.
- Barbecue grills are also a common source of summertime injuries and incidents. When grilling, be careful with whatever fuel you are using. To avoid food poisoning, cook foods thoroughly and keep cold food cold until ready to serve.
- Remember to use the appropriate sunscreen, use insect repellant to protect against mosquitoes and other threats, and drink plenty of water to prevent dehydration.