8 Tips to Navigate Slippery Winter Conditions Safely

About a million people experience falls every year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and approximately 20,000 people die annually due to fall-related injuries. Now that winter weather has arrived in full force and many parts of the country are experiencing snowy and icy conditions, play it safe when stepping outside to avoid painful and dangerous falls. Mike Ross, author of The Balance Manual and exercise physiologist at Gottlieb Center for Fitness, part of Loyola University Health System, explained that some of the unavoidable bodily changes that occur as we age may affect personal safety. As we grow older, our balance deteriorates due to the weakening […]

Firework Safety: Don’t Let Your New Year Start with a Bang

It should go without saying that driving sober or securing a designated driver is a key way to stay safe this New Year’s Eve. But another danger lurks on this holiday, too: fires or injuries caused by careless or unsafe use of fireworks. Setting off some consumer fireworks on New Years is a tradition that can be safe as long as a few commonsense safety rules are followed, according to Ralph Apel, spokesperson for the National Council on Fireworks Safety. He offers the following firework safety tips to follow this New Year’s and beyond: Know your fireworks. Read the warning labels and performance descriptions before igniting. Have a designated shooter […]

How Holiday Overeating Affects Your Body’s Food Clock

It’s the day after Christmas and I’m sitting in an almost-empty office, waiting for the blizzard that has been forecast to hit Cleveland even though there’s still not a flake in sight. I’m also gazing at the banana I brought for breakfast and wishing I could eat more Christmas cookies instead. According to experts, the holiday may have messed up my body’s “food clock.” I believe it. When we overeat at the holidays, we apparently share something in common with people who work the graveyard shift, people who are jetlagged and late-night snackers: the internal clocks in our bodies are thrown out of whack. According to researchers at the University […]

Health Care Workers Face Ergonomic Challenges

The widespread adoption of electronic medical records and other digital technologies in the health care sector might lower costs and reduce errors, but it also may come with a hidden risk: increased musculoskeletal injuries among doctors and nurses. In two new researcher papers, a Cornell University ergonomics professor argues that poor office layouts and improper use of computer devices may result in repetitive strain injuries among doctors and nurses. “Many hospitals are investing heavily in new technology with almost no consideration for principles of ergonomics design for computer workplaces,” said Alan Hedge, professor of human factors and ergonomics in Cornell’s College of Human Ecology’s Department of Design and Environmental Analysis. […]

Tips for Battling Seasonal Affective Disorder

The short, dark days of winter can be a big downer for many people who experience seasonal affective disorder, or SAD, during the coldest part of the year. SAD affects up to 20 percent of Americans and prompts symptoms including moodiness, loss of energy, overeating, social withdrawal, difficult concentrating and not getting enough sleep. SAD is caused by a combination of decreased serotonin and increased amounts of melatonin. Sunlight enters the brain through the eyes, stimulating the production of the neurotransmitter serotonin that supports nerve cell functioning, including mood. Less light results in lower serotonin levels, while darkness stimulates the production of melatonin, which promotes sleep. This combination causes SAD. […]

Christmas trees and holiday lighting present post-holiday fire hazards

Christmas trees and holiday lighting present post-holiday fire hazards NFPA reminds the public to properly store and dispose of seasonal decorations December 20, 2012 – While the winter months are the leading time of year for home fires, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) says the post-holiday season presents its own set of fire hazards. Dried out Christmas trees and holiday lighting are among the leading culprits. “As time goes by, Christmas trees continue to dry out and become increasingly flammable,” said Lorraine Carli, vice president of Communications for NFPA. “For trees decorated with holiday lights, the risk increases because they’re in direct contact with an electrical source.” Although […]

Learn Not To Burn Again

Learn Not To Burn Again NFPA has revised and updated its award-winning preschool program, Learn Not to Burn, to continue keeping young children safe from fire December 13, 2012 – National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recently updated its award-winning Learn Not to Burn (LNTB) preschool program, which teaches young children about fire safety Updates to LNTB feature revised teacher lesson plans and parent/caregiver home link activities. Also, the program’s songs, which were originally recorded by Jim Post, now include singer and musician, Dante Ware, who’s joined Jim in singing and performing many of the songs. “The music is still as fun and engaging as it has always been, but […]

Sharpen your fire safety smarts this season

Sharpen your fire safety smarts this season NFPA and Sparky the Fire Dog offer information to help reduce holiday fire risks December 12, 2012 – How many strands of mini string lights can you safely connect? How many inches should you cut from the base of a fresh-cut Christmas tree before placing it in water? Not really sure? Then it’s time to sharpen your holiday fire safety smarts with information and resources from the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). “Many people simply don’t know which activities and practices present hazards,” said Lorraine Carli, NFPA’s vice president of communications. “‘Project Holiday’ points out where holiday fire risks lurk, along with a […]

NFPA urges the public to stay warm and safe this winter

NFPA urges the public to stay warm and safe this winter December, January, February peak months for heating fires  December 10, 2012 – As temperatures continue to drop in the months ahead, the risk of home heating fires peaks. In fact, December, January and February are the leading months for home fires, when half of all home heating fires occur. “The use of heating equipment largely contributes to the peak in U.S. home fires during the winter months,” said Lorraine Carli, vice president of communications at the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). Video: “Hot Flashes” features cartoon character Dan Doofus learning some important lessons about home heating. […]

NFPA and USFA Team Up to Put a Freeze on Winter Fires

NFPA and USFA Team Up to Put a Freeze on Winter FiresMore fires occur in December, January and February December 6, 2012 – While a warm home and a hot meal on a cold winter’s day may conjure up thoughts of safety and security, the unfortunate reality is that winter is the leading time of year for home fires in the United States (U.S.). That’s why the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) and the U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) have teamed up to help prevent home fires in the winter months. Through a jointly sponsored initiative – Put a Freeze on Winter Fires – NFPA and USFA are working collaboratively to […]