Fort McCoy News April 28, 2017

McCoy team meets to review safety, health topics

STORY & PHOTO BY SCOTT T. STURKOL
Public Affairs Staff

Representatives from across Fort McCoy met in building 905 to discuss current safety and health topics and concerns April 18 during the quarterly meeting of the Safety and Occupational Health Advisory Council.

The meeting, led by Installation Safety Office (ISO) Manager Randy Eddy, covered a wide array of topics, including severe-weather awareness, tick prevention, and motorcycle and pedestrian safety.

Eddy first addressed that people within organizations throughout post can serve as additional duty safety officers (military) and collateral-duty safety officers (civilian). These are appointed positions coordinated with the ISO.

Installation Safety Office Manager Randy Eddy goes over safety topics during the quarterly meeting of the installation Safety and Occupational Health Advisory Council on April 18 at Fort McCoy. The council is led by the Installation Safety Office and provides an overview of current safety-specific topics relevant to the installation.
Installation Safety Office Manager Randy Eddy goes over safety topics
during the quarterly meeting of the installation Safety and Occupational
Health Advisory Council on April 18 at Fort McCoy. The council is led by
the Installation Safety Office and provides an overview of current safety-
specific topics relevant to the installation.

"This is a good opportunity to make a difference to improve safety in your workplace and to help us keep safety on everyone's minds in everything we do," Eddy said. "If you have been identified to be your organizations safety representative, contact our office, and we will work with you on official appointment, training, and to get you on our distribution lists."

Eddy said that during spring, everyone should be aware of what to do during severe weather, such as during a severe thunderstorm or a tornado. "In the U.S. in 2015, it was estimated there were more than 25 million lightning strikes and 1,200 tornadoes," he said.

When lightning is present, Eddy said people should avoid using electrical equipment or corded phones, for example. Also, avoid contact with metal objects and stay in a safe place indoors if possible.

For tornadoes, he said that people should adhere to watches and warnings and to be ready if one takes place.

"Have a plan and know where to go," Eddy said. "Get to a basement or the lowest floor of your home or work area if there is a tornado."

Eddy said spring also is a time when ticks become more prevalent at Fort McCoy and throughout Wisconsin.

"The ticks are out now, so take preventative measures," he said. "The most common types found at Fort McCoy are the wood tick and the deer tick. Wear protective clothing and repellent, and just be aware of areas you are frequenting where there might be ticks."

Fort McCoy offers the right mix of landscape and weather conditions that make human contact with ticks probable, according to David Beckmann, wildlife biologist with the Directorate of Public Works (DPW) Environmental Division Natural Resources Branch.

Ticks prefer wooded areas with brush and vegetation and thrive in hot and humid conditions. Tick exposure can occur throughout most of the year.

Eddy said ISO is holding motorcycle safety training again in 2017 with the first training beginning in June. This training is for military personnel only.

Military members interested in attending the training should contact Safety Specialist Tim Cumberworth at ISO at 608-388-7712 and register for a course online at https://imc.army.mil/airs.

"We have an instructor who will be coming in from Fort Campbell (Ky.), so maximum participation is encouraged," Eddy said.
Eddy added that everyone needs to be aware of motorcycles on the road. "Watch for motorcycles while out on the road and give them the space they need," he said.

Supervisor safety training is planned throughout the year as well, Eddy said. The first session of the year was held April 25; however, other sessions are planned for July 25 and Oct. 31.

"If you have the people who need the training or need a refresher, ensure they take the opportunity to attend a session to learn about everything they need to know to do in case of a safety incident at work or how to make work areas safer for employees," Eddy said.

Meeting attendees also had safety items to be shared.

• A representative with the Fort McCoy School-Age Center/Youth Center wanted to let people know that as the weather continues to warm drivers need to take caution around the center and the Child Development Center because of children traveling to and from areas near there. Similarly, a representative with the Wisconsin Challenge Academy asked that drivers be careful of cadets frequenting roadways.

• Curt Ladwig with the Directorate of Emergency Services Fire Department shared that people who need CPR and first-aid training can do so with the fire department. Contact the department at 608-388-2508 for more details.

• Col. Jim Davis with the 86th Training Division said there will be increased traffic around post in May with the start of the Warrior Exercise in May. He asked that people be careful as many service members will be walking and driving throughout the installation.

• Dave Gundlach with DPW said if anyone finds something that seems unsafe with facilities or other areas of Fort McCoy, they can call the DPW Helpline at 608-388-HELP (4357) in addition to ISO.

• Sgt. Tony Green with the Wisconsin State Patrol reminded everyone that road construction season has begun in Wisconsin. People should be aware of workers in construction zones and adhere to established speed limits for those zones. He advised people to look at the Wisconsin 511 website, www.511wi.gov, to see the latest construction and other roadway news from the Wisconsin Department of Transportation.

Garrison Commander Col. David J. Pinter wrapped up the meeting, advising everyone to practice safety every day.

"Get the word out about safety," Pinter said. "Safety starts with you. … Don't become complacent."

For more about the quarterly meeting or safety at Fort McCoy, call the ISO at 608-388-3403 or stop by building 1678.