Most successful companies understand that the best way to meet compliance standards in regard to employees wearing their personal protective equipment is to furnish them some really “cool” products.  Products such as gloves, safety glasses, and hardhats that keep them safe while bringing out their personalities at the same time! 

We recently received the following note, which sets the example:   “I received the hardhat yesterday and I love it. It’s been the talk of the town here for the past two days in my motor pool in Camp Leatherneck, Afghanistan. My 1stSgt, Co Gunny, and my CO all think it’s the coolest thing since sliced bread. It has not only provided my cranium protection, it’s given a sizable morale boost too to the Marines I work with. I wish to thank you one last time for ensuring its delivery here. I’d also like to thank your company for making the ordering process so easy and the site easy to navigate. Take care.”  (Goodness knows –  if anyone could use a lift, it’s our service personnel.) 

Many workers complain that their P.P.E. just doesn’t fit or look right.  Now, women’s products come in smaller sizes, from safety glasses to gloves and hardhats made just for them, some even in pink!  There are coveralls and other protective outerwear that is not just “one size fits all.”  Because people come in all sizes, companies should have their safety leaders include part of the workforce to make the decisions in the products they select.  It is unsafe for workers to have to perform their jobs in clothing that doesn’t fit.  Loose gloves and clothing can become caught in moving equipment. 

If companies allow their employees to wear, for example, say, hardhats that have sports team logos on them, it lets workers show support for their team, which in turn, might cause a little competition, along with a winning spirit.  We hope this encourages others to be aware that all safety glasses are not “Plain Janes.”  There are so many cool styles of glasses that surpass those found in optical stores, because not only do they look good, but furnish UV safety, as well as protect the eyes from foreign objects.  The look of safety equipment depends on the materials it is made from.  Therefore, many types of gloves and goggles or glasses are designed for protection and not style.  Whether they are industrial grade or medical grade gloves or outer clothing, chemists, medical personnel, food handling workers, and others who are engaged in types of work that require these special protective barriers are happy to wear them, knowing they are protected.  

The main concern toward keeping employees safe is to ensure they are compliant with safety rules.  PPE is the last line of defense when it comes to protection.  However, it won’t protect them if they don’t wear it!  The employee is responsible to know how to use this PPE for the particular purpose it was designed.  It is the responsibility of the company’s safety leader to ensure that they are trained and understand how to take care of their PPE, knowing when it is damaged and how it can be repaired if possible, or replaced when necessary.  It can be much more fun when workers to get to wear some type of PPE that puts a smile on everyone’s face.   

We thank our Marine for the kind words regarding the hardhat he ordered.  It is our hope that he and his buddies remain safe and return home soon!


Every year Halloween is celebrated on the 31st of October. The origins of Halloween can be traced all the way back to the 5th century BC. The celebration was originally adopted by the Romans in the first century AD. Two different Roman traditions that took place in October became a single holiday. The practice of dressing up a costume began a more ceremonial role as the belief in spirit possession lessened.

The distinct American version of Halloween has its origins in the separate beliefs and customs among many different European ethnic groups and the American Indians, which led to the history of the act of trick or treating. Kicking off early celebrations were public events that celebrated the harvest. Neighbors would often gather and share tales of the dead, reiterate ghost stories, and enlighten each other with fortunes.

In the United States, European immigrants had introduced Halloween by the 1840’s. The immigrants brought with them an assortment of holiday traditions and customs. Due to rigid religious beliefs during this time period, the act of celebrating Halloween was greatly restricted.  Irish immigrants to the United States began the popularization of the celebration nationally. The traditions of the Irish and English led to trick or treating. People would go house to house asking for food or money.

Trick or Treating is a great way for kids to have fun; however Halloween is no longer restricted to the kids, as adults dress up and attend Halloween parties to have fun and impress coworkers, friends, and peers.  Also, the expense of this holiday has expanded.  According to the National Retail Federation, an estimated $6.9 billion nationwide will be spent to celebrate All Hallows Eve.  Their figures for 2010 showed Halloween decorations brought in $1.6B, and candy sales amounted to $1.8B.  This means that it has since become the second largest commercial holiday in the United States.  Many people enjoy decorating their homes. It is common to see pumpkins carved, hay, straw, spider webs, strobe lights, and scary masks. People will often even try to scare others who are trick or treating at their home. Men, women, and children attend costume parties and wear disguises to both school and work. Haunted Houses have also become largely popular – where people walk through the dark and try to not get too scared and freaked out.

Like all holidays, Halloween is one to be enjoyed but should not be taken too lightly. Candy could potentially be harmful and must be inspected before given to children. In addition, parents need to follow their children while they are trick or treating. It is also essential to take the time to make sure the children wear costumes that are bright and colorful, sometimes by adding some high-visibility decals or stickers. 

We wish all little goblins a “Happy and Safe Halloween,” and for you big “ghouls and boys,” make it a safe one, as well!  See you in November!


Since October is Fire Prevention Month, we thought it would be fitting to close the month with information regarding Red Flag Warnings.  A Red Flag Warning is a term used by fire-weather forecasters to call attention to limited weather conditions of particular importance that may result in extreme burning conditions.  It is issued when it is an on-going event or the fire-weather forecaster has a high degree of confidence that Red Flag criteria will occur within 24 hours of issuance.  Red Flag criteria occurs whenever a geographical area has been in a dry spell for a week or two, or for a shorter period, if before spring green-up or after fall color.  It also happens when the National Fire Danger Rating System is high to extreme and the following forecast weather parameters are predicted:

  1. A sustained wind average 15 mph or greater
  2. Relative humidity less than or equal to 25 per cent
  3. A temperature of greater than 75 degrees F.

In some states, dry lightning and unstable air are criteria.  A Fire Weather Watch may be issued prior to the Red Flag Warning.  Several states have experienced extreme drought conditions this year, resulting in fires that destroyed homes, property, and animals.  For rural families, precautions should be taken long before a fire threatens property, in order to minimize costly damages after a fire.  All rural families, farmers and ranchers should be able to identify potential fire hazards and understand the basic fire response techniques to eliminate or minimize personal and property damage.  This should also apply to those who have chosen to build their homes in high locations, surrounded by many trees. 

Practice farm-specific fire safety.  Listed are basic suggestions:

  • Avoid fire hazards in the initial construction.
  • Have emergency numbers posted in a central location.
  • Your farm or ranch should have adequate water supply, such as an irrigation ditch, a water tank, a cistern, or pond.
  • Keep irrigation sources clear of combustible material.
  • Place fire extinguishers in all barns, vehicles, and tractors.  Check extinguishers periodically for charge.  Discard damaged or used fire extinguishers.
  • Keep barns and buildings clean of trash and other combustible materials, such as hay, lumber, logs and empty feed sacks.
  • Park tractors and implements away from combustible materials such as hay stacks and fuel storage containers.
  • Obtain fire insurance for livestock, buildings, and equipment. 
  • Develop an escape or evacuation plan, and practice it.  This plan should also include how to transport animals and livestock that may be in danger.
  • If you have time to evacuate animals, proceed with caution.  Some animals may be so frightened that they would even run back into a burning barn.  Make sure to close gates prohibiting access to dangerous areas. 
  •  Remove fuels, pesticides, medicines and other chemicals away from heat sources and combustible materials.  These types of fuels, etc., should be stored in a fire-retardant enclosure or secure location.
  • Ask your local fire department to conduct occasional fire drills and inspections, in order to avoid confusion in the event of an actual fire.

If you are traveling in an area that has Burn Ban notices or Red Flag Warnings, do not take a chance on throwing out a cigarette, building a campfire, or doing anything that could cause a fire.  It only takes one spark to create devastation that may cause loss of life, both human and animal, as well as destroying homes.  Houses can be rebuilt, but the memories and special treasures, such as pictures, possibly may not be replaced.


Guest Blog
America’s oldest volunteer eye health and safety organization, Prevent Blindness America, reminds us that October is designated as Home Eye Safety Awareness Month.  Of the 2.5 million eye injuries that occur every year, more than half happen within or around the home.  According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology and the American Society of Ocular Trauma, the most common place of injury is the yard or garden.  Home repair and/or the use of power tools in the home cause one in four eye injuries, as well.

“When doing everyday chores around the house or repair work in the garage, we can become complacent about remembering to use the proper eye protection,” said Hugh R. Parry, president and CEO of Prevent Blindness America.  “But, we must remember that an eye injury that can occur in a split second can have lifelong impact on vision.”  Protective eyewear that has been approved by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) should always be worn before doing any home or car repair, or during any other activity that could be potentially dangerous to the eyes. 

Another tip for avoiding eye injuries is to provide effective lighting in your home.  Better light reduces eye strain and also improves safety in the home, especially when stairways are well lit, or in areas where good light can reduce the risk of falls and other injuries.  Rehabmart offers a wide variety of table and floor lamps to help you better illuminate your home.  The Daylight Slimline Magnifying Lamp is a perfect choice for those who may have already suffered some vision loss as well as for those who want to help prevent vision loss.     

The Daylight bulb technology in this uniquely stylish lamp helps to reduce eye strain and improves the contrast of what you are looking at, helping you to see more clearly.  The flicker-free and low-heat technology soothes you and your eyes for hours, while you use 80% less energy compared to conventional lighting choices.  You additionally have the option of adding on a table base or floor stand, converting this lamp to your own needs and specifications.  The Daylight Slimline Magnifying Lamp also includes two easily changeable 5 inch glass magnifying lenses to help you see tiny details more clearly, making this the perfect choice for anyone who does beading, sewing or other detailed crafts.

 Many people may be familiar with ‘Eye Wash Stations” in their workplace, but few think about the importance of having this available in their homes as well.  Yet keeping eye washes on hand and ready to use at home can mean the difference between a temporary eye problem and lifelong vision loss, especially considering how more than half of all eye injuries occur in the home. 
Vision and eye health are important and everyone should take care of their eyes by getting regular eye check ups and screenings with their ophthalmologist.  The Prevent Blindness America organization also sponsors many screenings and vision programs for low-income children and adults who might not otherwise have access to this health care and prevention.  Rehabmart celebrates Home Eye Safety Awareness Month by continuing to offer a wide and varied choice of the best products to help prevent eye injuries in the home and elsewhere…because prevention of an eye injury is so much better than living with the long-term effects of an eye injury, especially when it could have easily been prevented.   

We at BLOG4SAFETY wish to thank:
Carol Koenigsknecht, Medical Consumer Writer and Hulet Smith, OT, Rehabmart Team Leader & CEO for this great article and sharing their concern with us and our parent company, Texas America Safety Company, about the importance of eye protection both at home and work.


 Breast Cancer Awareness Month is being promoted all through October.  You have no doubt noticed football players wearing pink, as well as groups of folks “Standing Up to Cancer.”  There are more than 2.5 million breast cancer survivors in the U.S., thanks to research and medical technology.  Researchers don’t know what causes breast cancer, but they have identified several risk factors. The National Cancer Institute (NCI – lists the following factors as increasing the chances of breast cancer. You may be able to help your employees family, or friends by bringing this promotion to their attention and asking them to privately evaluate their own risks:

❏  Age—most cases occur after age 60
❏  Personal history—cancer in one breast increases risk for the other
❏ Family history—chances increase if mom, sister, or daughter had breast cancer
❏ Breast changes—certain types of abnormal cells increase risk
❏ Gene changes—genes include BRCA1 and BRCA2
❏ Reproductive history—no children or late children increase risk
❏ Menstrual history—pre-age 12 menstruation and post-55 menopause increase risk
❏ Race—white women more at risk
❏ Radiation therapy to chest—before age 30 increases risk
❏ Breast density—more dense tissue and less fatty increases risk
❏  Weight—overweight or obese after menopause increases risk
❏  Activity level—less activity = greater risk
❏  Alcohol—more alcohol = greater risk

Women over age 40 should have an annual mammogram, and understand how to do self-examinations.  Even after reaching past age 70, women should still get mammograms.  Although it is not as common in men, breast cancer can develop in the breast tissue of men.   The notice of any lumps should be brought to the attention of one’s physician. 

I have several friends who have survived breast cancer because of early detection and receiving the proper treatment – surgery and follow-up therapy their doctors thought were best for each particular case.  However, I had a cousin that developed a very aggressive type of breast cancer, and she lived only one year following surgery, and going through every type of treatment possible.  She was 56 years old, and had never had a mammogram, even though her mother had experienced breast cancer.  This should serve as a lesson to all women:  early detection through mammograms can help save lives.  

Breast cancer awareness is also observed internationally during the month of October.  Many charities depend on this promotion to raise money for research.  Let’s hope that mothers, daughters, grandmothers, siblings, and friends will someday not have to worry about breast cancer.  That will truly be a miracle.  For those who are fighting this disease, keep on fighting, and to their friends and families – keep supporting them!  We must always keep the threat of Breast Cancer at the forefront, not just in October.


was this past week!  There were so many things to focus on during the week of October 17-23, it was difficult to address all of them.  Today, we will explain some things about radon, (Rn), a gaseous radioactive element.  It is an extremely toxic, colorless gas and can be condensed to a transparent liquid and to an opaque, glowing solid.  It derives from the radioactive decay of radium and is used in cancer treatment, as a tracer in leak detection, and in radiography.  The source of this technical explanation is Condensed Chemical Dictionary and Handbook of Chemistry and Physics. 

Radon comes from the natural (radioactive) breakdown of uranium in soil, rock and water, and gets into the air you breathe, or sometimes the water you drink.  It is located all over the United States, and can be found in homes, offices, and schools.  The home is the most likely place to furnish the most exposure, because that’s where you spend most of your time.  Radon from soil gas is the main cause of radon problems.  It can enter the home through well water, but mostly it enters the home through the soil.  Radon gas decays into radioactive particles that can get trapped in your lungs when you breathe.  These particles can cause damage to lung tissue and lead to lung cancer over the course of a lifetime.  Not everyone exposed to elevated levels of radon will develop lung cancer, and the amount of time between exposure and the onset of the disease may take many years. 

You can’t see, smell, or taste radon.  It is thought to cause many thousands of deaths each year.  The Surgeon General has warned that radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the U.S. today.  Only smoking causes more lung cancers deaths; if you smoke and your home has high radon levels, your risk of lung cancer is especially high. 

The only way to know if you and your family are at risk from radon is testing.  The Surgeon General and EPA recommend testing all homes below the third floor for radon, as well as testing in schools.  Call your state radon office about radon problems in schools, daycare, and childcare facilities, and workplaces in your area.  

It’s Not Hard to Find Out if You Have a Radon Problem 

Testing is easy and fast.  Radon in the air is measured in “picocuries per liter of air,” or “pCi/L.”  There are many kinds of low-cost “do-it-yourself” radon test kits you can order or find in hardware stores.  If you wish to use a qualified tester, you can also call your state radon office for information.  There are short-term tests, and long-term tests.  If you take a short-term type, and the result is 4 pCi/L or higher, take the follow-up test or a second short-term test.  Consider fixing your home if the average of both tests is this amount or higher. 

Home-buyers and renters are asking more often about radon levels before they buy or rent a home.  If you are thinking about selling your current home, make plans now to test for radon rather than run the risk of slowing down your home sale later.  Many new homes today are built to prevent radon from entering.  Ask the owner if the home has radon-resistant features.  If there is a test result of 4 pCi/L or more, a vent fan can be added to an existing passive system for around $300, and further reduce the radon level in your home. 

It requires persons with technical knowledge and special skills to lower high radon levels.  There are contractors who are trained in this field; they can study the radon problem and help you choose the correct treatment method.  Your state radon office can furnish names of qualified or state certified radon contractors in your area.  For more information, please go to   Radon reduction systems work, and are not too costly.  Some radon reduction systems can reduce radon levels in your home by up to 99 per cent.  Even very high levels can be reduced to acceptable levels, according to the EPA.

Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency


My apologies for waiting until the end of National School Bus Safety Week to get this article published!  But the safety of our children that ride school buses is an important matter throughout each school year.  The theme of this year’s observance is “Be Aware – Know the Danger Zone!”  Did you know that an area 10 feet around the bus is a distance that students, bus drivers, and other motorists should be aware of?  The annual campaign aims to educate the public on school bus safety issues.  According to House Resolution 498, from July 18, 2006, here are excerpts from the latest version of the bill that is currently available on Gov.Track: 

“There are approximately 480,000 yellow school buses that carry 25 million children to and from school every weekday; Whereas America’s 480,000 school buses comprise the largest mass transportation fleet in the country – 2.5 times the size of all other forms of mass transportation (transit, intercity buses, commercial airlines, and rail, combined -; Whereas during the school year, these buses make more than 50 million passenger trips daily carrying the Nation’s future – our children.

Whereas school bus transportation is eight times safer than traveling in a passenger vehicle; and is the safest form of ground transportation available.  School buses meet higher construction, equipment and inspection standards than any other vehicle, and school bus drivers meet higher qualification, training, and testing standards than any other drivers.

According to the National Academy of Sciences, an average of 820 students are killed annually during school transportation hours, but less than 2 per cent of them are school bus passengers.  Despite the industry’s best efforts, accidents still happen; An average of seven school-age passengers are killed annually in school bus crashes, and an average of 19 children are killed each year getting on and off the bus.  Most of those killed are children aged five to seven, and most often they are killed in the area immediately surrounding the bus. (The Danger Zone.)

School Bus Safety Week is celebrated in more than 40 states and sponsored by the NHTSA, created to remind all students of the best ways to get on and off the bus.  This SBSW dates back to 1966, and also recognizes the hard work and dedication of school transportation personnel, especially the many drivers who ensure a safe journey each and every day.” 

It is against the law to pass a stopped school bus, loading or unloading students.  The bus has flashing red lights, and an arm that swings out to warn motorists to stop at a safe distance behind the bus, allowing the children to cross the road if necessary.  Drivers must be courteous and let the bus driver to do their job safely.  They are the first person that the children see who represents their school district every morning.  They are the last person the students see as they leave to go home.  With the large number of students who ride school buses every day, they should know that they will get to and from school safety. 

In many states, when a vehicle illegally passes a stopped school bus with red lights activated, troopers who are following (or may be riding on the bus) will radio ahead to other troopers who will pull over the offending motorist and issue a ticket that could cost up to $1,000. (Texas) 

Remember that this is about keeping children safe; you should always stop for a school bus regardless of your chances of getting caught.  It is certainly not worth the risk to save a few minutes of your time.



The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reminds us to be aware of the risks that teen drivers face every time they get behind the wheel.  Drivers ages 15 to 20 years old, are especially vulnerable to death and injury on our roadways.  Traffic crashes are the leading cause of death for teenagers in America.  According to NHTSA, mile for mile, teenagers are involved in three times as many fatal crashes as all other drivers.  Also, teens are at far greater risk of death in an alcohol-related crash than the overall population, even though they cannot legally purchase or publicly possess alcohol in any state. 

It is parents’ responsibility to protect their teens.  They should first set the example of safe driving while their children are small.  If they text while driving or drive aggressively, chances are, the youngster may adopt their habits.  Because it’s the law, seat belt use begins with babies, who are safely restrained in their car seats.  It’s only logical that they should be in the habit of buckling up since they have been doing so all their lives; however, the fact is that teens buckle up less frequently than adults.  In 2009, the majority of young people 16 to 20 years old involved in fatal crashes were unbuckled – 56 per cent. 

The U.S. Department of Transportation reports that they will not rest until they stop distracted driving.  Their main effort is to work with private and public entities as well as advocacy groups to tackle distracted driving.  Please teach your teens to put their cell phones down and pay attention to the task at hand – driving! 

Here are five ways to get drivers to stop texting: 

1.      The direct approach.  Tell the driver that it makes you nervous to ride with someone texting and driving.  Hopefully, they will put down the phone.

2.      The subtle approach.  If you are uncomfortable telling a driver to quit texting, try offering to text for him/her.  Also, point out things the driver may have not seen, but barely missed, such as a pedestrian or other car.

3.      The “Wow, look at that bad driver!” approach.  Point out drivers who wander over into the next lane, or drive too slowly, run a stop sign, or stop at a green light.

4.      The group approach.  If your entire group feels the driver is a hazard, make a plan together.  Either take away the driver’s keys, or agree not to ride with that person.  When several people boycott a driver, he or she will get the message.

5.      The life-saving approach.  If someone continues to text and drive or mocks you for worrying about it, don’t ride with that person.  Tell them your parents won’t let you ride with anyone who texts and drives. 

There’s a current advertisement for a car that senses different driving situations (sleepy driver, other driver distractions, etc.).  This is a great safety feature; however, frightening, that we would depend on a vehicle to pay attention to the things we should watching for.  Our suggestions are for all drivers – not just teens.  There are many other causes of car crashes caused by distracted driving, such as loud music, drowsy driving, nighttime driving, or driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.  Cars can be dangerous machines if the steering wheel falls into the wrong hands. 

Finally, think about how many other drivers are taking your life into their hands by either talking or texting on their cell phones while meeting or approaching you.  Repeating the message from the Department Of Transportation: put that phone down or turn it off!  Get your teens into the habit of waiting to retrieve their messages when they arrive safely at their destination.

Source: NHTSA, DOT,