NOVEMBER 24, 2015
Image by: (MITCH SHAW/Standard-Examiner) Airmen from Hill Air Force Base are served a Thanksgiving meal inside an airplane hangar, Tuesday, November 24, 2015.HILL AIR FORCE BASE — How many dinner guests would have to huddle around your table this Thanksgiving to constitute “a large gathering?”
Twenty? Fifty? One Hundred?
To Cesar Vargas, a master sergeant at Hill Air Force Base, all of those numbers are small potatoes.
A jet engine mechanic by trade, Vargas led a group of 100 volunteers who worked to feed about 1,000 Hill airmen and their families on Tuesday, Nov. 24, part of the 388th and 419th Fighter Wings’ annual Thanksgiving feast.
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Commentary: Think safety for Thanksgiving
Hilltop Times Air Force
By LT. COL. G. HALL SEBREN, JR.
75th ABW Chief of Safety
November 26, 2015
I wanted to pass a little information to you as you prep for the Thanksgiving weekend. As many of you know, a big danger during Thanksgiving has recently become frying up that delicious turkey.
Among some of the safety tips:
• Turkey fryers should always be used outdoors and at a safe distance from buildings and any other material that can burn.Also, during this time of year, slips, trips and falls are a big concern. Most folks, graciously, wait until after Thanksgiving to put up their Christmas lights. This means ladders and cold weather, which can lead to a visit to the local emergency room after falling off the ladder because someone over-reached and fell.
• Never use turkey fryers on wooden decks or in garages.
• Make sure the fryers are used on a flat surface to reduce accidental tipping.
• Never leave the fryer unattended. Most units do not have thermostat controls. If you don’t control the temperature, the oil will continue to heat until it catches fire.
• Never let children or pets near the fryer during or after use. The oil inside the cooking pot can remain dangerously hot long after it has been turned off.
• To avoid oil spillover, do not overfill the fryer.
The common theme with these kinds of injuries is laziness. People failed to descend the ladder, move it and ascend again. Don’t become a statistic. How about this: It’s another opportunity to burn a few extra calories by making a few extra descents and ascents!
Finally, I’d like to encourage a mindset change.
Many of us have “grown up” hearing the term “Safety First.” I’d like to propose we move away from that and get to a “Mission First” mindset. We should accomplish the mission within a culture of safety and compliance.
If we create this culture, we’ll decrease injuries and rework, which will increase productivity. How about that, mission accomplished and Airmen safe! Have a wonderful day and be careful out there.