Monday, December 31, 2012

A New Year- A New You! Health and Safety Tips to Kick Start the New Year

As we embark upon a New Year, many people will be thinking of New Year’s Resolutions as well as reflecting on their past and what they can do better in their future. As avid educators for health and safety, we would like to share with you some great health and safety tips to guarantee you more awareness in the New Year.

·         Make sure your kids as well as you are knowledgeable on how 9-1-1 works as well as when and when not to call 9-1-1. You can check out one of our previous blogs here that provides this information: http://cellphonesally.blogspot.com/2012/12/how-9-1-1-works.html

·         Strive to be healthy! Keep doctor check-ups and vaccinations up-to-date. Your health is very important so make sure to get flu shots and yearly exams. You can ask your health care provider for any suggestions on tests or exams you should get to guarantee you’re living a strong, healthy life.

·         Manage Stress Better! It is important to keep a healthy balance in life. Try not to over-commit. This can easily lead to getting sick. Remember to manage your time well and most importantly, stay positive and take time for you when you need to relax.

·         Prevent injuries and put Safety first! Being alert and aware of your surroundings is always important to your well being. Make sure to look both ways before crossing the street, know your location and be prepared for anything. Parents should also discuss fire safety and with children during the cold months of the year. Never leave fireplaces, candles or stoves unattended.

·         Stay Active! Keeping our bodies moving is important to our health. This can be as simple as walking for 30 minutes three times a week. Whatever your workout of choice, incorporate it into your daily life and better yet, get the whole family involved in fun activities that keep everyone active.

Cell Phone Sally would like to wish everyone a Happy and Healthy New Year!

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Safety Tips for the Holidays

The holidays are a time of year when people get together and enjoy extra time with family and friends. While this can be one of the most joyous times of the year, we must also put safety first. Follow these tips to keep you and your family safe this holiday season.

Christmas Trees
Many families will participate in buying a natural Christmas tree for their home this year. Some things to keep in mind include always keeping the tree watered. When a tree does not get watered, it dies and dries out. If it were to catch on fire, it would be extremely dangerous.
Check out this link and view the short video on Christmas trees and how quickly a dry tree catches fire opposed to a watered tree: http://www.usfa.fema.gov/citizens/home_fire_prev/holiday-seasonal/holiday.shtm
Other tips for trees include placing a tree in areas that are not close to heat, a fireplace or candles. After the holidays are over, the best way to dispose of your tree is to take it to a recycling center or have it picked up by a community service.
Holiday Lights and Decorations
Decorating can be jolly and fun, but safety is still a must when putting out your holiday d├ęcor. Make sure to inspect your holiday lights for possible frayed wires or broken lights. Replace broken lights and throw out lights that are not working properly. Make sure to not overload your electrical outlets either. Too many plugs into one outlet can be a serious safety hazard. Instead, buy extension cords and multi-outlet plugs.
Candle Care
Candles can be nice but they can also be dangerous if you don’t take the proper precautions when using them. Candles should be in stable holders and somewhere that they cannot be easily knocked over. Never leave a candle burning in the house when no one is home- an unattended candle can lead to a burning home so always blow your candles out. Better yet, just buy the battery-operated flameless candle. They look and feel the same but are much safer for your home.

The Center for Disease Control went above and beyond to help the community stay safe this holiday season. They created a nifty song called “12 Ways to Health Holiday” song. You can check it out here: http://www.cdc.gov/family/holiday/12ways.htm

Monday, December 17, 2012

How 9-1-1 Works

Many people know to call 9-1-1 in an emergency, but do they know the ins and outs of how 9-1-1 works? By knowing how 9-1-1 operates, it can help the public understand what goes into emergency services. Without 9-1-1 services, lives would not be saved and dangerous situations would not be resolved. 9-1-1 plays a huge role in our lives whether we are aware of it or not. Below we share with you how 9-1-1 works.
99% of the United States currently has access to 9-1-1 services. Throughout the U.S., 9-1-1 receives over 200 million calls a year. 9-1-1 call-takers deal with all types of calls ranging from domestic disputes and break-ins to health emergencies and accidents of all kinds.
People should be aware that there is not a central 9-1-1 call center for everyone.  9-1-1 centers are located all over the U.S. and are usually referred to as a PSAP (Public Safety Answering Point). According to the current FCC registry, there are 8,334 PSAPs throughout the U.S. When you dial 9-1-1, you are connected to the closest PSAP in your area.
Here is a breakdown of what happens when you call 9-1-1 for help:

·         9-1-1 Calls are routed to the closest PSAP
·         An operator retrieves information from the caller regarding the emergency and then alerts the proper service (police, fire fighters, and EMS) then alerts the proper service (police, fire fighters, and EMS)
·         Remember to always know your location and let the 9-1-1 operator know immediately
·         Emergency services are dispatched and help is on its way!

More Specific Information on 9-1-1: http://people.howstuffworks.com/9-1-1.htm

 

Monday, December 10, 2012

How to Deal with an Intruder in your Home

It’s the middle of the night and a noise wakes you up. Your first thought: Oh no, someone is in my house! In another scenario, you could be at work while your kids are at home and someone attempts to break into your home. What do you do and what do you tell your kids to do if this happens to them or you? Each year roughly 16% of American homes deal with some type of property crime or theft. With the following helpful tools, you can help protect yourself and your family from intruders in the home.

Getting Away from an Intruder
It is important to talk to your family about what you will do if someone is in your home. If you are your loved ones are able to escape the home safely, then do so and run to the nearest neighbor to call 9-1-1 for help. Teach your children how to get help from a neighbor or the police if they are in danger or hear someone trying to break in while they are home alone.
What to Do Once the Intruder is Inside
Once the intruder is inside, it is best to be as quiet as possible so you do not alert the intruder to your presence. If you are able, make your way to a safe room. This can be a closet or a bathroom where you have a deadbolt lock. Get you and your family into the safe room, lock the door and call the police. It is a great idea to keep a phone charger in your safe room so that you don’t have to worry about your phone losing a charge. Once you dial 9-1-1, tell the operator your address first and then quickly explain the situation in a quiet voice. Talking quietly will protect your safety.
Coming in Contact with an Intruder
Make sure to arm yourself with a blunt or sharp object for protection. Be prepared to use the object if the intruder is able to get to you. People tend to think they will get in trouble for hurting someone, but when your life is threatened, you must act accordingly. Never take aggressive action unless it is your only option because escaping is always the best route. If the intruder has a weapon, remain calm and cooperative for you and your family’s safety. Do not make eye contact and be prepared to fight for your life, if necessary. If you do hit the intruder, make sure to run to safety afterwards.
What to do to Prevent Break-Ins and Intruders in the Home
Many break-ins can be prevented. Make sure your front and back doors are durable and strong. It is always a good idea to have dual deadbolt locks on these doors as well. This will prevent people from pushing their way into your home. Make sure you also have your windows locked at all times! The majority of break-ins happen through the front or back door as well as windows left unlocked.

Other Tips to Avoid Being Burglarized
-       Get a dog as a pet- they are great at keeping intruders out!
-       If you have your keys on you, push the alarm button on them if you hear an intruder. The loud noise is likely to scare them away
-       Keep bedroom doors locked at night
-       Keep your cell phone next to your night stand
-       Install Alarm Systems (If you can’t afford an alarm system, try just posting stickers on your windows from an alarm company- they won’t mind the advertising and it can deter a thief from breaking in)
-       Take a Self-Defense Class to help you learn how to protect yourself

YouTube Video on Break Ins: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fXzhfB5VlGM
YouTube Video of a Break In: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b7cIW4uMAko



 

Monday, December 3, 2012

How to Handle an Emergency Situation

Emergency situations happen every day and knowing how to react to these emergency situations is important and could potentially save lives. The most important thing to remember in any emergency situation is to stay calm and collected. People can tend to panic during scary situations, but this can only escalate an emergency situation. Follow these simple steps if you ever find yourself in an emergency situation:
  • If you are at home, work or school, it is always good to know where your emergency phone numbers and first aid kits are located.
  • Take deep breaths because your brain functions better with more oxygen.
  • Figure out your surroundings and what is needed of you or what you can do to help.
  • Dial 9-1-1 and get professional emergency medical help as soon as possible when someone is in danger, seriously hurt or injured.
  • Know what information (who, what and where you are) to provide to the 9-1-1 dispatcher. If you are unable to make the phone call, see if there is someone around you who can dial 9-1-1 for help
  • Make sure to listen to the 9-1-1 dispatcher on the phone and do not hang up. Follow their instructions and remember to remain calm.
  • Remain calm and wait for the police and emergency specialists to arrive. Remember that the emergency specialists know what they are doing so stay out of their way when they arrive.
By following these simple steps, emergency services can get to you and the emergency quicker. If there is ever an emergency around you or happening to you, never hesitate to call 9-1-1. 9-1-1 is here to help you and make sure you are safe and ok! 

Check out this site for what to do in specific emergency situations: http://www.emergencycareforyou.org/EmergencyManual/WhatToDoInMedicalEmergency/Default.aspx

Monday, November 26, 2012

Stranger Danger: What it Really Means and How to Help Keep Kids and Others Safe

Stranger Danger is a slogan that has been around for many years. It has aimed to keep children safe by teaching them to not talk to strangers or those perceived as dangerous individuals. We think more explanation on the danger part will help children and others realize when a situation is dangerous and when it is ok to talk to strangers when in need of help. Below are some tips we have compiled to keep you and your children safe from danger.

Travel in Groups
The best way to stay safe is by traveling with a buddy or with a group of friends when going to school or playing outside. When you are with other people, dangerous individuals are less likely to try and approach you. Remember, there is safety in numbers!
Build Confidence in Children
Teach children and others that if someone ever tries to abduct, grab or take them, that they can fight back. Here is just a few ways to fight back: scream, kick, bite, and put up a good struggle. If you are able to get away, run to the nearest adult or group of people for safety.
Teach Children Which Adults to Trust
 It is important that children realize that not all adults are dangerous strangers. Teach children the type of adults they can seek out and trust. Some examples include a police officer, a security guard, or another woman with children.
Other Important Tips for Keeping Safe:
*Never put identifying information such as names on purses or backpacks or where a predator could see it.
*Store updated photos and important information such as fingerprints of your children in case something should ever happen to them and you would need to provide this to police.
*Never leave school or another function with someone who makes you feel uncomfortable. Trust your instincts.
*A common trick used by predators and child molesters is asking a child about helping with an emergency, a hurt pet or a hurt family member. Make sure your child knows not to trust a stranger like this and to get help immediately.
*Make sure children feel comfortable discussing their safety and well being. If something were to happen to them, you would want them to feel safe telling you about it without them feeling like they did something wrong.
*Always remember, if you or someone you are with feels threatened in any way, please call 9-1-1 immediately for help. 

Helpful Information for Parents: http://www.netsmartz.org/Parents
Video on Stranger Danger:

Monday, November 12, 2012

Protect Yourself during Flu Season

Staying healthy and taking care of your body is important to your overall health and well-being. From now until March, many people will come down with seasonal influenza, also known as the flu. In order to prevent those from getting sick, follow the following guidelines to keep you and your family well!

The flu is a highly contagious respiratory illness which is caused by influenza A and B viruses that attack the body by spreading through the upper and lower respiratory tract. While a cold can sometimes feel like the flu, it is not near as debilitating. Flu-like symptoms include high fever, headache, fatigue and weakness in the body. These symptoms can also appear almost instantly from the time you are infected.
The flu virus is spread quite easily through the air. When someone sneezes who has the flu, he or she infects the air around them. If you were to be close to that person and inhaled droplets in the air that contained the virus, then you could become infected too. Other ways the flu is transmitted is through sharing drinks or utensils, or handling items that an infected person used. If the flu virus were to get on your skin, and then you touched or rubbed your eyes, mouth or nose, then you could become infected as well. This is why it is so important to ALWAYS wash your hands when going to the bathroom and before you eat.

What to do to Prepare for Flu Season
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that everyone six months and older get a flu vaccine once a year. By getting this vaccine, you are taking the first step in protecting yourself from getting this awful illness. Flu vaccines are provided at pharmacies and doctor offices as well as at schools and places of employment.
Secondly, taking everyday preventative actions to stop the spread of germs is important to staying flu-free as well. This includes:
-       Washing your hands with soap and water
-       Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing
-       Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs spread easily this way!
-       If you get sick, limit contact with others to prevent further infection in others
Lastly, if you get the flu, there are antiviral drugs that can treat it, but it will still take time to get over and get back to being healthy. Visit your doctor if you think you might have the flu.
More information on the flu here: http://www.flu.gov/
YouTube Video on the flu: http://youtu.be/zE6rYqaWjkU

Monday, November 5, 2012

Preventing Carbon Monoxide Poisoning


As the weather becomes colder throughout the U.S., it is important for people to keep in mind the risks of carbon monoxide poisoning and how to avoid it from happening to you or your loved ones. Also known as the quiet killer, carbon monoxide comes from fumes produced by furnaces, vehicles, portable generators, stoves, lanterns, gas ranges, or burning charcoal or wood. When the fumes become trapped inside the home, it can cost lives.

When the power goes out due to emergencies such as bad weather or hurricanes, the use of alternative power options such as portable items used for heaters and cooking goes up. This can be especially dangerous if fumes from these items build up in the home. This is why it is so important to make sure your homes are equipped with carbon monoxide detectors. (Don’t forget to replace the batteries on a regular basis!) More than 450 people die each year due to unintentional carbon monoxide poisoning. By recognizing and preventing carbon monoxide poisoning, we can help lower the number of unintentional deaths and help save lives.
Carbon monoxide poisoning has symptoms that are very similar to the flu. Because of this, many people do not realize they have had carbon monoxide poisoning. The most common symptoms are: headache, dizziness, weakness, nausea, vomiting, chest pain, and confusion.
What can we do to help prevent carbon monoxide poisoning?
·        Have your heating and water system (or anything serviced by gas) checked once a year for any problems by a qualified technician.

·        Install battery-operated carbon monoxide detectors in your home and change the batteries at least once a year. 

·        Please seek medical attention or call 9-1-1 immediately if you suspect carbon monoxide poisoning.

·        Do not use camp stoves, generators, grills or anything gasoline or charcoal-burning inside the home or garage.

·        Never leave a vehicle running in the garage.

·        Never heat your home with a gas oven

·        Do not burn anything in a stove or fireplace without ventilation.
Remember, carbon monoxide poisoning is preventable. Make sure to protect yourself and your family by being prepared and aware. If you think you might have carbon monoxide poisoning, please call the Poison Control Network at 1-800-222-1222. For more information on carbon monoxide poisoning, please visit: http://www.osha.gov/OshDoc/data_General_Facts/carbonmonoxide-factsheet.pdf

YouTube Video: http://youtu.be/lchtRTDsHSM

Monday, October 29, 2012

Safety Tips to Maximize Halloween Fun!


Halloween falls on a Wednesday this year and many children and adults alike will be out trick or treating and attending parties or haunted houses. Halloween is a time when people enjoy dressing up in costumes and eating delicious treats, but it also is a great time to shine a spotlight on safety. Below are some tips and tools to help maximize safety and ensure healthy fun on this spooky holiday.

Trick-or-Treating Tips:
- Avoid trick-or-treating alone. It is always best to walk in groups or with a trusted adult.
- Use reflective tape on costumes and bags in order to help drivers see you at night.
- Costume items such as knives and swords should be short, soft and flexible.
- Make sure to go through the treats to check them for tampering or choking hazards. Eat only factory-wrapped treats. Avoid eating handmade treats from strangers.
- Take a flashlight with you so you can see and others can see you. And remember to walk, not run in between houses.
- Look both ways before crossing the street and make sure to use crosswalks.
- Enter homes only with a trust adult and only visit well-lit homes. Do not stop at dark homes and never accept rides from strangers.
For those handing out candy or attending parties:
- Provide healthy treats or low calorie treats for trick-or-treaters.
- Leave your light on and your house well-lit for trick-or-treaters.
-Always remind drivers to watch out for trick-or-treaters and to drive slowly and safely through neighborhoods.
- Make sure to have lots of fun!!!

Check out this video for Halloween tips: http://youtu.be/Ful7kykz4TU

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week 2012


October 21st through the 27th marks National Lead Poisoning Prevention Month. Young children frequently put toys or other objects that are close to grab in their mouths during childhood and early development. Unfortunately, putting hands in the mouth can put children in contact with lead paint or dust.

There are many sources of lead, but the most common lead exposure occurs from chips and particles of old lead paint. While children can be exposed to lead through paint chips and dust, they can also be exposed to lead that might be in house dust or soil around the home.
Lead is an invisible source (to the naked eye) which means that it is exposed to as many as 30% of children without their knowledge. Some of these items containing lead include:

·         Imported candies
·         Imported toys or jewelry
·         Imported cosmetics
·         Pottery or ceramics
·         Drinking water that is contaminated with lead
Children are not the only individuals we need to worry about when it comes to lead poisoning. There are many work and extra-curricular activities that can expose individuals to lead. Some activities that could cause exposure to lead include remodeling projects on the home, home repairs, indoor firing range use and pottery making, to name a few.
How to Protect Children from Lead Exposure
Lead poisoning is easily preventable with these simple tools. The goal is treat children immediately who have been poisoned with lead and also stopping children from coming into lead exposure in the first place. Possible lead hazards need to be identified and removed from the home and away from a child’s environment.
If you have any reason to suspect your child or you have come in contact with lead poisoning, please contact your health care provider. Your provider can then decide if a blood test is necessary to test for elevated lead levels in the blood. A blood test is the only way to tell if you or your child is suffering from lead poisoning. Never hesitate to call the Poison Control Center hotline for more information at 1-800-222-1222.
What Parents Need to Know:  http://www.cdc.gov/nceh/lead/ACCLPP/blood_lead_levels.htm


How to Prevent Lead Poisoning in your Home: http://youtu.be/Tc5PiTz73d8

Monday, October 8, 2012

National Fire Prevention Week

During the second week of October, people across the U.S. are focused on promoting fire prevention and safety. Fire safety is important knowledge for everyone in case they are ever found in an emergency situation.  Unfortunately, many fire hazards in the home go virtually undetected because people are unaware or do not take the time to fireproof their home. By utilizing some simple tools, you can create a safer environment in your home and educate everyone on what to do in case a fire breaks out.

A lot of fires that start in the bedroom are usually caused by misuse or poor maintenance of electrical devices, leaving candles burning too long, smoking inside or even children getting a hold of a lighter or matches. With a little education, most of these issues can be addressed and avoided. An example is making sure flammable items such as bedding and clothing is at least three feet away from lit candles or portable heaters. Items such as electrical blankets and appliances should never be used if the power cords are frayed or cut. And lastly, remember that electrical outlets should never be overloaded with lots of appliances plugged into one outlet. Below are more tips and tools on how to protect your home from a fire.
WHAT YOU CAN DO TO BE PREPARED
*Make sure all fire alarms in the household are up and operating correctly. Replace batteries if needed.
*Designate escape routes from different parts of the home and practice them to be prepared in case a fire does break out.

*Don’t forget what you learn in school: Stop, Drop and Roll! This is very important in case your clothing or hair catches on fire.

*Remind kids that lighters and matches are not toys and are tools for lighting things. IN the same regard, make sure matches and lighters are out of reach of children and in a safe place.
For more information on fire safety and prevention, please visit www.fpw.org or www.live-safe.org.


Below is a great video from the Live-Safe website:

Monday, October 1, 2012

Focusing on Bully Prevention

October marks the month where we focus efforts on bully prevention. Whether you are an adolescent or an adult, bullying is never okay and by taking a stand, we can help stop bullying or prevent it from occurring.

WHAT IS BULLYING?
There are various types of bullying but in its most basic form, bullying is unwanted, aggressive behavior from one person or a group of people. Bullying can continue for a short time or a long time but it is shown that those who bully and those who are bullied, can have serious lasting problems. Examples of bullying include: name-calling, teasing, taunting, threatening to cause harm, to name a few. Social bullying exists too in the form of leaving people out on purpose, spreading rumors, telling someone not to be friends with another person or embarrassing someone in public. Physical bullying such as hitting, kicking, punching and screaming or taking someone’s things is also a serious problem. Bullying can occur during school hours or after school hours. 

CYBER-BULLYING
Cyber-bullying is bullying that occurs through the internet or electronic technology. Most cyber-bullying can occur through emails or on social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter. It could be a mean text message or an embarrassing photo or even fake profiles created to bully someone.

Sadly, kids who are cyber-bullied usually end up skipping school, using alcohol or drugs, have a lower self esteem and have more health problems than the average kid.  

UTILIZE RESOURCES AND GET INVOLVED
Everyone plays a role in bully prevention whether you are a student, teacher, parent or onlooker of bullying. That is why it is so important that as a community we make an effort to stop and prevent future bullying. Make sure to talk to kids about bullying so that they understand it is not acceptable behavior. Explain the warning signs and how they can report bullying to teachers, parents or trusted adults. Communicate with kids and make them feel comfortable enough to tell you if bullying is occurring with them or someone they know.
It is a great idea to talk about how to stand up to a bully as well. They can use tips such as humor or telling the person directly to stop or even just walking away from the situation. Encourage kids to help other kids they might see being bullied too. At www.stopbullying.gov there are numerous tips, videos and tons of information on bullying and how to prevent it from happening to others or even you.

Links to great informational resources on bullying:
http://www.stopbullying.gov/index.html

http://whatsyourstory.trendmicro.com/internet-safety/pg/internet-safety

www.GrowingWireless.com/

Check out these videos on examples of bullying and take the quiz after viewing:
Here is a great article on how one woman dealt with bullying:
http://shine.yahoo.com/women-who-shine/sikh-woman-balpreet-kaur-turns-cyber-bullying-incident-203500244.html



Tuesday, September 25, 2012

September is National Cholesterol Education Month

Too much cholesterol is never a good thing and if you have too much in your blood, it could easily lead to a heart attack or stroke. In order to prevent these risk factors, it is important to stay informed about your health and learn how to detect cholesterol and treat it when it is found.

WHAT IS CHOLESTEROL?
Cholesterol is a waxy, fat-like substance that your body actually needs, but if you have too much of it in your blood, it can build up walls in your arteries. When that occurs, it can lead to a heart attack or stroke. Two out of three adults have high cholesterol which is why it is so important to learn how to prevent it now.
There are actually two kinds of cholesterol: high density lipoprotein (HDL) and low density lipoprotein (LDL). While HDL is known as the “good” cholesterol, LDL is not. It is recommended that adults aged 20 years or older should have their cholesterol checked every five years. For those under 20 years old, you still need to take precautions so that your cholesterol does not end up affecting your health or life.
Screening is actually the key to detecting high cholesterol because high cholesterol does not have any symptoms. So in order to know if your cholesterol is good, make a doctor’s appointment where they will do a simple blood test to find out the results. But what are some things you can do to be proactive regarding your health and cholesterol? Here are a few healthy lifestyle changes that are sure to help:

*Eat a healthy diet that is low in salt, low in total fat, saturated fat, and cholesterol.
*Eat plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables.
*Maintain a healthy weight.
*Don’t smoke
*Take at least one brisk 10-minute walk, three times a day, five days a week.

If you think you might be having a stroke or a heart attack, do not hesitate to dial 9-1-1 for emergency assistance. For more information on cholesterol and your health, visit: http://www.tdcj.state.tx.us/win/info/cholesterol.pdf

Monday, September 17, 2012

9-1-1 Songs, Catchy Tunes that Educate and Boost Morale

Throughout the United States, songs have been written to commemorate or pay tribute to the 9-1-1 community. These songs not only have an impact on the 9-1-1 community, but the public as well due to their recognition of unspoken heroes including fireman, police and 9-1-1 call-takers, to name a few.

Trish Murphy located in Austin, Texas created the Cell Phone Sally song for the video “9-1-1: Getting Help is Easy”. Trish explains that she got the inspiration for the 9-1-1 song from thinking of her childhood and growing up with Sesame Street and PBS.
Trish was instrumental in creating the 9-1-1 song and helping the 9-1-1 community get information out to younger generations in a fun informative way that is both catchy and memorable.

“I hope this generation of youths will grow up with that song in their heads and have the information handy if they ever need it,” Trish said.
Trish collaborated on the song with her brother and together they created the lyrics, song structure and tune. While Trish sings, her brother plays all the instruments, a total of 10 that are utilized in the song. The song, which is both well received by both children and adults alike, is not only catchy but fun to listen to as well. Trish has also collaborated with her brother on another song for a cause.
“I’ve worked with my brother singing some cool pieces he’s written for academic use in Texas,” Trish said. “It’s incredible how he can make the laws of geometry singable!”

The Cell Phone Sally tune is not the only 9-1-1 song that has made an impact in the 9­-1-1 community. A song called Everyday Heroes is a tribute song to first responders composed in 2010 by Dave Carroll who himself was a volunteer firefighter. Another 9-1-1 song called Lifeline is a tribute song to 9-1-1 call takers written by Houstonite Robert Smith whose uncle was a 9-1-1 supervisor.
Whether you are a parent, teacher, or public educator, using these 9-1-1 songs to help educate the public is undeniably a great tool. What better way to make a difference than by creating a catchy tune that will stay with the public for years to come?
The Commission on State Emergency Communications and 911safety.org are making available for download the song “9-1-1: Getting Help is Easy.” Both the English and the Spanish versions are available at: http://www.csec.texas.gov/educational-resources/kids-resources/911-public-education
 

Monday, September 10, 2012

September is National Preparedness Month

September marks the month where we are all reminded to be prepared for emergencies and put in simple practices to make our lives more manageable. Cell Phone Sally would like to encourage everyone to make it a point to be prepared in case of an emergency through four simple steps.  
First, be informed about the different types of emergencies that can happen in your area and their appropriate responses. This includes learning about the hazards that may strike your community, the risks you face from these hazards and your community’s plans for warning and evacuation. You can obtain more on this information by visiting http://www.ready.gov/be-informed.
Second, put a family emergency plan in place. It is important to plan in advance so that your family knows the roles they play in dealing with an emergency. Remember to think about how you will contact one another, how you will get back together, and what you will do in different situations. You can easily download a family emergency plan template by visiting http://www.ready.gov/make-a-plan.
Third, put together an emergency supply kit and have it handy so you can find it during emergency situations. Things to include in the supply kit would be food, water and other supplies in sufficient quantity to last for at least three days. Local officials and relief workers will be on the scene after a disaster, but they cannot reach everyone immediately. You could get help in hours, or it might take days which is why you want to have plenty of food and water to survive on. In addition, basic services such as electricity, gas, water, sewage treatment, and telephones may be cut off for days, or even a week or longer. To find a complete checklist of the supplies your household may need in the event of an emergency, visit http://www.ready.gov/build-a-kit.
Lastly, make an effort to get involved in emergency preparedness. You can do this by visiting www.CitizenCorps.gov to find local Citizen Corps Councils. You can also look into USAonWatch (Neighborhood Watch) groups, Community Emergency Response Teams (CERT), Fire Corps programs, Volunteers in Police Service (VIPS) programs, and Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) units. Ask them what you can do to prepare yourself and your community for disasters and how to get involved locally.
And as always, Cell Phone Sally wants to remind you that if you are ever involved in an emergency, do not forget to contact 9-1-1 for help.
This link is just for kids! http://www.ready.gov/kids
 

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Spanish Version of Cell Phone Sally Video Now Available Online


Since the online release of “9-1-1: Getting Help is Easy“ posted earlier this year, featuring Cell Phone Sally, more individuals have had the opportunity to view and utilize it in classrooms and outreach events. The Commission on State Emergency Communications is excited to share with you the news that the Spanish version of the DVD is now available for online viewing as well!
This 10-minute video plays a very important role in public education by reaching even more citizens, as well as helping to empower children and adults alike about 9-1-1 safety. By having it available in Spanish online, we are now able to provide life saving resources to an additional population group.
“9-1-1 public education is key for audiences of all languages.  Being able to provide the Cell Phone Sally video to our Spanish speaking citizens will greatly help our efforts,” Susan Rodriguez of the City of Plano said. “Having our citizens understand when to call, how to call and what to say when they call 9-1-1 is vital.  Having the tool available online in Spanish will further assist in this endeavor to reach a wider audience.”
9-1-1 public educational efforts throughout the country are put into place to not only help our communities stay educated about 9-1-1 safety, but also to make sure the 9-1-1 centers run as smoothly as possible. A more educated community means that the 9-1-1 center will receive calls from people who are better prepared to answer the questions the call-taker will be asking and provide for an efficient handling of the 9-1-1 call.
Having access to the Cell Phone Sally video online is also convenient for our public educators. It helps provide them as well as others with resources that educate children on how they can play a role in getting help during a 9-1-1 emergency.
“If we can provide this video to the teachers it will be great,” Connie Chavarria of the City of Laredo said. “Another great place to make use of this resource would in the community centers, Boys and Girls Clubs, or the after school programs where the kids also have access to the computers. This will be a big plus.  We will definitely be using it in our presentations to show it to them as well.”  
Below is a link to our Spanish and English versions of “9-1-1: Getting Help is Easy.” Check it out and get better educated today!
SPANISH
http://bit.ly/RCJu5t

ENGLISH
http://bit.ly/SSh3lJ