Gateway Gazette

Bring Silent Nights to First Responders

When you settle in for the holidays, first responders will be suiting up.

And you can help give them more silent nights than clatter this Christmas season.

Before you take off for the holidays, we urge you to take a look around your workplace and make sure it’s safe. At this time of year, many businesses add decorations and undergo work site changes in an effort to get into the spirit of the season.

That festive spirit is great, but we want to remind people to make sure their workplaces are safe for everyone – whether it’s employees, visitors or first responders who may need to attend your work site during an emergency.

CLEAR THE HALLS

Many businesses are closed for several days or even weeks over the holiday season and that can create potentially deadly hazards if people don’t ensure their workplaces are safe before they close their doors.

“No one expects to have a medical emergency or a fire or a break-and-enter at their business, but the reality is these things happen and when they do, it’s first responders who have to respond to them,” says Ian Wilson, Managing Director of the John Petropoulos Memorial Fund (JPMF).

“That’s why it’s important to look at your workplace from the perspective of emergency responders. Can they get in and out safely? Can they get around while carrying someone on a stretcher? Does your workplace have sensor lighting in effect? These are all good questions to consider.”

You can find more workplace safety tips here.

TOUGH SLEDDING

Meanwhile, we are also urging motorists to pay attention to emergency vehicles at this time of year. Facing adverse weather conditions, increased traffic and the potential for more impaired drivers, this can be an especially challenging time of year for first responders, so we hope that you’ll watch out for them during the Christmas and New Year break.

“Slow down when you’re passing emergency scenes and emergency responders working on roadsides and if you can, safely move into another lane to give first responders room to work,” says Wilson.

“When emergency vehicles approach with their lights activated and sirens sounding, yield the right of way. Safely pull over and let them pass. They could be trying to help someone you love.”

Find more traffic safety tips here.

A happy and safe holiday season for all!

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