Safety, Health and Survival Week 2010:Fit for Duty

Today the International Association of Fire Chiefs and the International Association of Fire Fighters announced the theme for the 2010 Safety, Health and Survival Week: Fit for Duty.

Safety, Health and Survival Week (Safety Week) is a collaborative program sponsored by the IAFC and the IAFF, coordinated by the IAFC Safety, Health and Survival Section and the IAFF Division of Occupational Health, Safety and Medicine, in partnership with more than 20 national fire service organizations.

Fire departments are encouraged to suspend all non-emergency activity during Safety Week and instead focus entirely on safety, health and wellness-related training and education until all shifts and personnel have taken part. An entire week is provided to ensure each shift and duty crew can spend one day focusing on these critical issues.

With more than 50 percent of fire fighter line-of-duty deaths caused by health and fitness-related issues, both organizations believe it’s imperative that there be a concentrated effort in implementing wellness and fitness programs.

Safety Week’s Fit for Duty theme will cover a variety of topics that are extremely important to all fire fighters and EMS personnel. The program will assist fire departments with implementing their own programs to prepare fire fighters and EMS personnel with healthy habits that reduce the risk of many chronic diseases, such as heart disease, hypertension, diabetes and certain cancers, thereby increasing the chance for a longer and healthier life.

While departments are encouraged to identify activities tailored to their specific community, recommended areas of concentration include:

  • General Health and Wellness
  • Food and Nutrition
  • Fitness
  • Stress Management
  • Smoking and Smokeless-Tobacco Cessation
  • Alcohol and Other Drugs
  • Infectious Diseases
  • Suicide Prevention

During the week, departments are also encouraged to support comprehensive fitness assessments, medical screenings and educational programs that build and maintain medically and physically fit personnel and help in reducing health and fitness-related deaths or injuries.

Planning tools and resources are currently available on the Safety Week website courtesy of the IAFC Safety, Health and Survival Section. Check out the Resources > Health and Wellness webpage for specific resources on this year’s areas of concentration.

Additional information can also be found on the IAFF’s Health, Safety and Medicine’s website. Online resources in a variety of topic areas are available online year-round to support continuous efforts to promote personnel safety, health and wellness programs.

Call For Additional Resources

We seek submissions for new SOPs, policies, articles, program summaries, program descriptions, etc., on this year’s areas of concentration. The preferred format for submission this year is a URL link to a departmental or organizational website, in order to facilitate a timely posting of new resources and provide visibility to departments contributing to the program. If a link isn’t available, PDF documents will still be accepted.

If you have submitted resources for Safety Week in the past, there’s no need to resubmit the same information. However, if you have updated your resources or have new ones, we would like to add them to the website. If appropriate, please note that your submission is an update of a resource currently posted on the Safety Week website.

By providing resource links for use in conjunction with the Safety Week and overall fire/EMS safety efforts, you acknowledge that you:

  • Have the authority to do so without infringing on copyright or ownership of the resources.
  • Give the IAFC permission to post these links/resources on the IAFC’s public website.
  • Understand that the IAFC posts these links on the IAFC’s website for use by public visitors to promote safety practices in the fire and emergency service, but the IAFC does not control who uses the resources or how they are used. The goal is to provide tools and resources that fire and emergency service professionals can customize for use in their area. Please do not send resource links that cannot be used in this fashion.
  • Understand that their availability on the website does not constitute endorsement of any kind by the IAFC.

Email your current resources to [email protected] by Friday, March 26, 2010. In your email, please indicate which of the 2010 areas of concentration (listed above) the resource references

Keep watching the Safety Week website and the IAFC Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn pages for continuing updates to this year’s program and planning resources. Remember to visit the IAFF’s Health, Safety and Medicine’s website for more information on health, wellness and safety programs or contact the IAFF by email at [email protected] for additional resources.