Health and Safety Podcast Transcript: February 8, 2012


Fairfax County Podcasts 

Hello, and welcome to the Fairfax County Health and Safety Podcast for Feb. 8, 2012. I’m Jim Person, Fairfax County emergency information officer. Coming up, learn about registering for the upcoming statewide tornado drill, National Burn Awareness Week, the start of Virginia’s spring fire season and phishing. Links to topics mentioned in this podcast can be found online at www.fairfaxcounty.gov.

Registration is open for the March 20 Statewide Tornado Drill at www.ReadyVirginia.gov. Businesses, schools, organizations, families and individuals are encouraged to take part in this critical safety exercise. The annual Statewide Tornado Drill is sponsored by the National Weather Service and the Virginia Department of Emergency Management. Learn more about tornado safety and how to hold a drill at www.ReadyVirginia.gov or call the Fairfax County Office of Emergency Management at 571-350-1000 for assistance.

Joining with the American Burn Association and the U.S. Fire Administration, the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department is spotlighting National Burn Awareness Week, Feb. 5-11. Parents and caregivers are encouraged to take action to keep loved ones safe from fire and burn hazards. The theme for this year is “Scalds.” Scald injuries are painful and require prolonged treatment. They may result in lifelong scarring and even death. Scalds can be prevented through increased awareness of scald hazards and by making common sense changes. Provide a “kid-safe” zone while preparing and serving hot foods; cook on back burners when young children are present; keep all pot handles away from the stove edge; and use non-slip placemats instead of tablecloths. Additionally, you are encouraged to lower the water heater thermostat to deliver water at no more than 120 degrees. Visit www.usfa.fema.gov and www.burnprevention.org for more information.

Virginia’s spring fire season starts Feb. 15 and runs through April 30. The commonwealth’s 4 p.m. burning law also goes into effect Feb. 15, prohibiting burning before 4 p.m. each day if the fire is in, or within 300 feet of, woodland, brushland or fields containing dry grass or other flammable materials. Governor Bob McDonnell warns that the threat of wildfires is increased this year due to Virginia’s mild winter, coupled with the effects of the last year’s tornadoes and Hurricane Irene. The Department of Forestry reports that more than 40 percent of the wildfires in Virginia last year were caused by people burning trash or debris. For more, visit www.dof.virginia.gov.

Finally, are you familiar with phishing? Not fishing, with an “F,” but phishing, with a “PH.” Phishing is an attempt by an individual or group to solicit personal information from unsuspecting users by employing social engineering techniques. Phishing emails are crafted to appear as if they have been sent from a legitimate organization or known individual. These emails often attempt to entice users to click on a link that will take the user to a fraudulent web site that appears legitimate. The user then may be asked to provide personal information such as account usernames and passwords that can further expose them to future compromises. Additionally, these fraudulent websites may contain malicious code. For more information on phishing, visit the U.S. Computer Emergency Readiness Team website at www.us-cert.gov.

 


That’s it for this edition of the Fairfax County Health and Safety Podcast, produced by the Fairfax County, Virginia government. Thanks for listening. Additional information about health and safety topics and emergency preparedness may be found online at www.fairfaxcounty.gov. And remember, if you have a police, fire or medical emergency, call 9-1-1. For non-emergency needs, call 703-691-2131.


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