Each June, the National Safety Council (NSC) celebrates National Safety Month (NSM), an initiative to bring attention to the importance of safety and the prevalence of accidental injury. According to the NSC, accidental injuries lead to the deaths of about 120,000 people each year. In addition, 67 percent of deaths related to injuries are attributed to unintentional causes.
According to the NSC, this year’s theme, “Safety: It Takes All of Us,” was inspired by the idea of continuous risk reduction – a key pillar in the journey to safety excellence. Each week during the month of June has focused on a specific safety theme. Week one centered on prescription drug abuse; week two highlighted the prevention of slips, trips and falls; week three spotlighted personal safety and awareness of one’s surroundings; and week four emphasized putting an end to distracted driving. Next week is considered a “bonus week” and will feature summer safety.
Safety is the top priority for the American Gas Association (AGA) and our more than 200 utility members across the country. AGA’s members continuously work to keep their communities safe and to help ensure our distribution and transmission system continues to be the safest and most reliable method of delivering energy in the nation. While the natural gas industry has multiple safeguards in place to protect their customers, AGA would like to take this opportunity during NSM to remind customers to actively participate through these methods:
- Maintain gas appliances and fuel lines.
- Call 811 before embarking on any excavation project – big or small.
- Report the smell of natural gas immediately to your natural gas utility. Utilities odorize natural gas with Mercaptan, which smells similar to rotten eggs.
- Be attentive to safety communications provided by your utility.
Many of these natural gas safety methods are highlighted in a video AGA released earlier this year to help educate the youth. The animated video, aimed at elementary and middle school aged children, explains which appliances use natural gas, how to identify a natural gas leak and what to do if a leak occurs. These key safety messages are not only critical to family and caregivers, but the next generation of utility customers. We encourage your company to share this video internally and on your social media platforms.
The NSC has asked the public to join the conversation about safety online by using the hashtags #NSM14 and #SafetyMonth on Twitter, and several AGA members and partners have been participating. Pacific Gas & Electric and the Exelon Corporation have been posting daily safety tips on their Twitter pages, along with Dig Safely New York.
If your company has done something to promote NSM, let us know in the comments section below. AGA will feature member companies on our social media pages, as well as future blog posts.