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At turkey time, keep safety in mind: A message from the Chief of Safety

MCCONNELL AIR FORCE BASE, Kan. -- I would like to wish you all a happy and healthy Thanksgiving and holiday season.  As you plan your travel and holiday celebrations, please remember your Risk Management training and apply sound RM principles to your activities, both on and off duty.

Winter driving is upon us, and it's a great time for a vehicle check-up. Ensure tires are in good condition with proper tread, that your battery is fully charged for those cold starts and keep your vehicle fueled up. It's a good practice to have a winter driving kit handy, in case of emergency. Some ideas can be found in the AAA materials posted on our Safety SharePoint, in addition to winter driving techniques that will come in handy on the icy Kansas roads.

Don't forget to allow plenty of extra time to get to your destination safely. Avoid driving while fatigued and always after consuming alcohol. Please remember the dangers of distracted driving and stow those devices while driving. That text or call can wait. Drive to arrive!

Thanksgiving is the leading day of the year for home fires. Ensure that fire alarms and extinguishers are in proper working order, practice safe cooking behaviors and remain alert for fire hazards, especially the number one culprit: unattended cooking. When preparing those scrumptious Thanksgiving meals, remember to thaw and store food items safely, avoiding the "danger zone" between 40 and 140°F, where bacteria thrive.

Lastly, if you're going to be getting your Clark Griswold on, use sound ladder practices, utilize indoor and outdoor lights in proper locations and avoid overloading outlets and circuits. We have posted links to several helpful sites offering holiday decorating and cooking safety tips on our SharePoint.

A little bit of common sense and planning will help ensure that you and your loved ones enjoy a fun and safe holiday season. Cheers to that and THANK YOU for all that you do!