From the Fire Chief's Corner

From the Fire Chief's Corner

FROM THE FIRE CHIEF'S CORNER: DROWNING PREVENTION TIPS

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

Don’t Turn Your Back – It Happens Just Like That!

July 19, 2021 (San Diego) – This is the time of year where swimming pool drownings reach their peak.  Drowning incidents are dramatically on the rise both locally and nationally. According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, just under 400 deaths a year on average are attributed to drowning in a swimming pool or at a spa. Sadly, of the total number of accidental drownings, approximately one in five victims are aged 14 or younger.

CHIEF’S CORNER: CHEAP SUNGLASSES – KEEPING AN EYE ON YOUR WELLNESS

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna
 
"When you wake up in the morning and the light is hurt your head — The first thing you do when you get up out of bed — Is hit that streets a-runnin' and try to beat the masses — Now go get yourself some good sunglasses" – ZZ Top   Listen while you read: https://lnkd.in/g8ZWAqF
 
July is UV Awareness Month!
 
July 13, 2021 (San Diego) -- During the summer we put a lot of emphasis on protecting skin from UV rays. It is important. But we cannot forget about protecting the eyes — exposure to bright sunlight increases the risk of developing these four ailments: cataracts, macular degeneration, growths on the eye and cancer.
 
Here are some tips from the American Academy of Ophthalmology:

FROM THE FIRE CHIEF’S CORNER: FOURTH OF JULY AND 100% PROBABILITY OF IGNITION

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

June 28, 2021 (San Diego) -- We have not seen significant rain in several months. Fuel moisture content is at 0%. We are at what we call 100% probability of ignition. This means the tiniest spark can start a fire.

The Fourth of July can be a fun time with great memories. But before you, your family & friends celebrate, make sure everyone knows about Fourth of July safety. Since Fireworks are illegal in San Diego County, there are still safety precautions to provide safety while celebrating.

FROM THE FIRE CHIEF’S CORNER: YOU ARE IMPORTANT!

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

June 13, 2021 (San Diego) - When was the last time someone told you that?  When was the last time you told someone that? Why is it we feel the need to keep those three simple words under lock and key? Are we the only one that wants to be important? Are we afraid that others may change if we make or tell them they are important?

FROM THE FIRE CHIEF’S CORNER: MEMORIAL DAY SAFETY TIPS

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna 

May 28, 2021 (San Diego) -- Make it Memorable This Memorial Day Weekend - with Situational Awareness!

This Memorial Day Weekend will be the biggest weekend in over a year with less Covid 19 restrictions. With great weather in the forecast, many people will be hitting the trails, parks, lakes, barbeques, golfing and of course our highways and roadways will have lots of traffic. 

FROM THE FIRE CHIEF’S CORNER: ‘TIS THE SEASON -- FOR RATTLESNAKES

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

Photo:  rattlesnake, creative commons by NC-ND
 
April 30, 2021 (San Diego) -- I’m not talking about those “special” people in your life that slither around ready to take a swipe at you!
 
April and May mark the beginning of rattlesnake season which continues through the summer months. At one point or another, while hiking or depending upon where you live, you’ve probably encountered them at least one time. Unless you’re one of those odd people who seem to like getting startled by a rattler, encountering snakes is not a pleasant experience for most.

CHIEF’S CORNER: NATIONAL PUBLIC SAFETY 911 DISPATCHERS WEEK

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna
 
April 13, 2021 (San Diego) -- The National Public Safety Dispatchers Week is celebrated every second week of April each year. This week April 11-17, 2021 aims to honor all 911 Fire/Police/Paramedic Dispatchers & Staff whose work is involved in public safety communication. This weeklong event gives recognition and expresses gratitude to all those people dedicated to saving the lives of the people.
 
Understanding the Job of a 911 Dispatcher
Most of the time, people have no idea how hard the job of emergency communicators is. They carry a great responsibility because they are the first line of hope or defense for those people in need. They are the first ones to get in contact with people who are in danger. If you still have not fully realized that yet, then it is all the more reason for you to celebrate this week.

FROM THE FIRE CHIEF’S CORNER: SPRING FORWARD INTO SAFETY

Spring Into Safety!

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

March 8, 2021 (San Diego) -- March 14th is Daylight Saving Time. Setting the clock forward means it’s time to check the clock and move it forward one hour. But for a spring clean safety check, make your “hot lap” around the home, why not take a little extra time for a short safety checklist?

FROM THE FIRE CHIEF’S CORNER: SHAKE THAT TREE – AS IN PROMPTLY REMOVE CHRISTMAS TREES TO PREVENT FIRES

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

December 27, 2020 (San Diego) -- If you’re having trouble parting with your Christmas tree, here’s a fact to motivate you: One-third (33 percent) of U.S. home fires that begin with Christmas trees occur in January. With this potential fire hazard in mind, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) strongly encourages everyone to remove Christmas trees from their homes promptly after the holiday season.

CHIEF’S CORNER: HAVE A DRINK ON ME

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna
 
August 25, 2020 (San Diego) -- It’s hot outside, so make sure you stay hydrated. Give the yard a break, but don’t cut back on yourself. Dehydration occurs when your body does not have as much water and fluids as it should. Dehydration can be mild, moderate, or severe, based on how much of your body's fluid is lost or not replaced. Severe dehydration is a life-threatening emergency!
 
Don’t wait until you’re thirsty until you drink water. Stay one step ahead of the thirst and drink water throughout the day. Don’t rely exclusively on thirst to tell you when you need to grab something to drink. Sometimes thirst is not a reliable gauge, especially when you’re exercising, on a working incident, training or if you’re taking medications or have a health condition.
 
Keep a water within reach — at all times. Do you take regularly rehab breaks during an incident? Make sure you do! Keep water at moderate temperatures. You drink more fluid when it’s just the right temperature, not too hot and not too cold. Beware of certain energy drinks. Popular energy drinks are very different from sports drinks. They are full of caffeine and sugar, and can be dehydrating instead of thirst-quenching.

CHIEF’S CORNER: BEAT THE HEAT – AND CHECK THAT BACK SEAT

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

July 6, 2020 (San Diego) -- The dog days of Summer have arrived. And the bad news it, it looks like more is in store this week with a long hot summer ahead.Each year, dozens of children and untold numbers of pets left in parked vehicles die from hyperthermia. Hyperthermia is an acute condition that occurs when the body absorbs more heat than it can handle.

Hyperthermia can occur even on a mild day. Studies have shown that the temperature inside a parked vehicle can rapidly rise to a dangerous level for children, pets and even adults. Leaving the windows slightly open does not significantly decrease the heating rate. The effects can be more severe on children because their bodies warm at a faster rate than adults.

Safety tips concerning children include but are not limited to:

FROM THE FIRE CHIEF’S CORNER: TIME TO SNAKE, RATTLE AND RUN – SNAKE SEASON!

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

May 11, 2020 (San Diego’s East County) -- Recent rains have provided snakes the opportunity to mate a little longer. Generally, rattlesnakes emerge from hibernation into April, or when the average daytime temperatures reach and remain about 60 degrees Fahrenheit and higher.

CHIEF’S CORNER: EARTHQUAKE/DISASTER PREPAREDNESS MONTH

 
By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna
 
One to Two Weeks With Nothing or One to Two Weeks With the Basics?
 
 
April 20, 2020 (San Diego) -- To say California has had a rough stretch the last number of years in the catastrophic loss world would be an understatement. But as we continue into 2020 and head into April it’s a reminder that April is California Earthquake Preparedness Month. Organizations and fire departments can take steps to lessen and mitigate the deadly and damaging effect of earthquakes by bringing awareness to communities.
 
Covid-19 is on the forefront of everyone’s mind, however, we cannot forget other potential disasters that threaten our state. Earthquakes, floods and fires are just a few.
 

CHIEF’S CORNER: IMPACT OF COVID-19 AND BRUSH FIRE SEASON

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna
 
March 31, 2020 (San Diego) – It’s important to remember this years brush fire season will be a very active one with so much rain over the winter months. Unfortunately, the Covid-19 virus is putting many at risk as it’s hampering mitigation efforts with local fire agencies.
 
From brush mitigation management, prescribed burns, to multi-agency training for firefighters, local, state and federal fire agencies are trying to adhere to the country’s new social distancing guidelines to slow the spread.
 
The U.S. Forest Service, announced last week that it was suspending prescribed burns. This is an effective way to reduce hazardous vegetation from hillsides.
 
Fire Chiefs’ concern now is that we’re going to be more reactive to fire than proactive. We need the publics help more than ever. We’ll do our part, but the public has to do their part!
 

CHIEF’S CORNER: MARCH IS COLON CANCER AWARENESS MONTH

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna
 
Make No “If’s ands or Butts” About It – Get Checked!
 
March 18, 2020 (San Diego) -- I always liked to say I was Andy's training captain, because as young boys we would set fires in my parents' backyard and play "firefighter." Andy was the smart one. I provided the training center (my parents' backyard), which meant I was stuck with the evidence while Andy rode his bike home, another successful "training" session complete.
 
Though my dad wasn’t in the fire service, I swear he was a fire investigator in a past life. Andy and I always took pains to cover our tracks from the fires we set, but my dad managed to find the burn patterns, the point of origin and the Ohio blue tips used for ignition along with burned wood, debris and weeds.

CHIEF’S CORNER: IS THERE A VIRUS OF INCONSIDERATION?

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna
 
March 15, 2020 (San Diego)--You probably don’t remember me, but I remember you. At the bank, the gym, in the grocery store, the receptionist. You were the one disgustingly sneezing, coughing and hacking without covering your mouth. Like a driver texting, you’re placing everyone else at risk. Is it just ignorance or arrogance?
 
I am shocked as I observe the inconsideration some are demonstrating during this time. Please be mindful!
 
Flu activity peaks between December and March resulting in more than 200,000 hospitalizations and thousands of deaths each year. Now with the Corona virus we have an even greater risk of being exposed to an additional dangerous and deadly virus.
 
What you could have done once symptoms came on is:

CHIEF’S CORNER: ARE YOU READY FOR AN EARLY WILDFIRE SEASON?

 

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

March 6, 2020 (San Diego) -- We’ve had the driest January and February for quite some time. Usually its our wettest months of the year. We’ve had some rain, but not much. We did experience more than normal wind events and more are expected through this week with warm temperatures promoting fuel growth and drying out vegetation faster than normal!

The National Interagency Fire Center Issued this alert for Southern California: Significant large fire potential is expected across the region during the outlook into late March, April and May. 

CHIEF’S CORNER: YOUR SUPERBOWL STRATEGY NEVER STOPS

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna
 
January 29, 2020 (San Diego)--As you prepare for Super bowl festivities make sure to be a good sport and keep your ‘Safety’ front and center at all times.
 
Why? “Super Bowl Sunday is the biggest one-day sporting event in the United States and unfortunately one of the most dangerous days on roads and highways. Its estimated that 325 million gallons of beer are consumed by Americans on Super Bowl Sunday. That's roughly one gallon for every man, woman, and child in the country.” Aggressive behavior increase and there are more opportunities for food poisoning than any other day.
 
So, are you hosting the game in your Home Field? Be a good Quarterback and avoid a false start with unhealthy foods. Keep the ‘tight end’ looking just that ‘tight’ by adding healthy snacks to your menu instead of high fat foods, or go for that super bowl trophy by serving all healthy snacks. Let’s avoid that ‘Wide Receiver’ if possible.

GET "FIRED UP" THE SAFE WAY!

CHIEF'S CORNER : FIREPLACE SAFETY

 

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

 

January 20, 2020 (San Diego) -- It’s been pretty chilly lately and nothing beats a nice fire in the fireplace during winter months. Though fires may keep us warm, there are hazards that need to be addressed.

The U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) encourages you to practice the following fire safety steps to keep those home fires safely burning says DiGiovanna. Remember, fire safety is your personal responsibility as fire prevention starts with you!

Here are some fireplace safety tips to help keep you safe:

CHIEF’S CORNER: GAS LEAKS IN THE HOME

 

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

January 5, 2020 (San Diego) -- Got Gas?  As temperatures cool down, home heating use goes up. Additionally firefighters respond to more reports of gas inside a structure call. It’s important for homeowners and renters to inspect their home-heating appliances and perform any maintenance necessary to avoid any health or safety hazards.

If you smell gas in your home or your carbon monoxide detector goes off, immediately evacuate the house and call 911.

FROM THE FIRE CHIEF’S CORNER: AVOID THE BLACK FRIDAY BLUES BY BEING PREPARED

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

November 25, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) -- People camped out in line for hours, anticipating the release of the latest gaming system. Shoppers storming store doors as they open, trampling over others in their excitement. Punches thrown over the last $300 flat screen TV. That's right, folks.  This Friday is Black Friday. And it can get nasty.

CHIEF’S CORNER: LET’S TALK TURKEY – THE SAFE WAY

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

November 18, 2019 (San Diego) -- Thanksgiving signifies the beginning of the holiday season and many of us will be spending more time in the kitchen preparing for the holidays. Thanksgiving Day is the leading day for home cooking fires, with three times as many occurring on Thanksgiving as any other day of the year.  

FROM THE FIRE CHIEF’S CORNER: NOT EVERY HERO WEARS A CAPE

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

September 30, 2019 (San Diego) - The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) has announced "Not Every Hero Wears a Cape, Plan and Practice Your Escape!" as the theme for Fire Prevention Week, October 6-12, 2019. This year’s campaign recognizes the everyday people who motivate their households to develop and practice a home fire escape plan; these seemingly basic behaviors can have life-saving impact.

FROM THE FIRE CHIEF’S CORNER: FALLING RIGHT INTO FIRE SEASON

This is the first week of Fall, and with it comes Santa Ana winds!

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

September 27, 2019 (San Diego) - Though fire season is year round, Fall typically brings triple-digit temperatures, low humidity and gusty winds bringing high fire danger and red flag warnings.

FROM THE FIRE CHIEF’S CORNER: SEPTEMBER IS SUICIDE PREVENTION MONTH

Suicidal Tendencies?

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

September 20, 2019 (San Diego) -- Suicide is on the rise. Regardless of race, gender, age, fame, financial status, it is rising! Having suicidal thoughts does not mean someone is weak or flawed.

FROM THE FIRE CHIEF’S CORNER: THE PRICE FOR FREEDOM: FIRE SERVICE LESSONS FROM SEPTEMBER 11

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

“The price of liberty is eternal vigilance.” —Major General James Jackson

September 19, 2019 (San Diego) -- It’s been 18 years since United Airlines flight 175 and American Airlines Flight 11 were purposely flown by hijackers into the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center. Shortly thereafter, the Pentagon was severely damaged by the impact of an additional airliner and resulting fire. Hijackers also crashed a fourth plane into a field near Shanksville, Pa., after the passengers and flight crew attempted to regain control of the aircraft.

FROM THE FIRE CHIEF’S CORNER: LABOR DAY SAFETY TIPS

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

August 26, 2019 (San Diego) - Make Labor Day Work For You – Safely!

On the first Monday of September, many workers take the day off and enjoy time relaxing with friends and family for Labor Day. Many Americans will turn the time off into an extended weekend by hosting barbecues, going on a mini vacation or spending time outdoors, reminds Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna.

FROM THE FIRE CHIEF’S CORNER: LET’S HAVE SOME CLASS ON BACK-TO-SCHOOL SAFETY TIPS

By Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna

August 6, 2019 (San Diego) -- When I was younger, I hated all the back-to-school commercials. They were a dreaded reminder that summer was over and pretty soon, I'd be back inside a hot, stuffy classroom, mourning my lost freedom.

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