Vandenberg observes Critical Days of Summer

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Shane M. Phipps
  • 30th Space Wing Public Affairs
Members of VAFB are encouraged to keep safety at the forefront of their minds, as the 30th Space Wing Safety Office recognizes the 2014 Critical Days of Summer.

The critical days span from Memorial Day to Labor Day, as studies have shown this time period is most likely to produce outdoor-activity mishaps throughout the year.

"The summer months bring warmer weather, which usually invites members to embark on more road trips and to participate in more recreational activities such as, extreme sports," said Tech. Sgt. Francisco Borjas, 30th SW ground safety technician. "As the number of road trips and recreational activities increase so does the amount of risk. The summer months also mean longer days, which promote potential fatigue issues."

Safety personnel believe it's essential for every Airman to remember the basic Risk Management skills they've learned while in the Air Force.

"We strive to have folks take the safety culture home with them," said Mike Trudeau, 30th SW ground safety manager. "With an increase in risky activity, there's an increased chance for mishaps. Spending a few quick minutes looking for potential hazards pays huge dividends in the end and will ultimately save time recovering from a mishap."

Although statistics have indicated a steady use of safety practices during duty hours, there remains room for improvement while off duty.

"Airmen do a great job of utilizing Risk Management at work," said Borjas. "Unfortunately, the problem is when Airmen go home and take off the uniform -- they tend to hang-up Risk Management as well. By practicing Risk Management while on and off duty, we can prevent or lessen the severity of most mishaps."

According to safety officials, taking the time to practice proper assessment skills can mean the difference between a dangerous outing and a safe one.

"Every Air Force fatality is a terrible loss," said Trudeau. "As Airmen, we are part of a military organization and we know what it's like to sacrifice and act bravely for our country. We are given many tools to use to meet the goals of the Air Force and Airmen should use these tools in their off-duty time to show their dedication to our core values through safety choices."

Safety in general always plays a direct role in one of the Air Force's main priorities, protecting its most valuable resource -- Airmen.

"The loss of a member is much deeper than just a vacant desk," said Borjas. "Such a tragic loss has a huge emotional effect on the personnel in their work center, unit, base and most importantly the family. By refocusing our attention on safety, we can help ensure that we don't lose a family member, co-worker or fellow Airman from easily preventable injuries or deaths."