Health and Safety Podcast Transcript:October 3, 2012

Fairfax County Podcasts 

Hello, and welcome to the Fairfax County Health and Safety Podcast for October 3, 2012. I’m Jim Person, Fairfax County emergency information officer. Coming up, learn about the Great Southeast ShakeOut, fire prevention open houses, the upcoming flu season and responses to the county’s derecho emergency survey. Links to topics mentioned in this podcast can be found online at

The first Great Southeast ShakeOut is set for Thursday, Oct. 18, at 10:18 a.m. The ShakeOut is a great opportunity to practice “Drop, Cover, and Hold On,” the recommended response to an earthquake. Virginia has joined Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Maryland and the District of Columbia to help residents understand the safe response to an earthquake and to promote participation in the Great Southeast ShakeOut. The drill is open to individuals, families, businesses, organizations, schools and government agencies. Sign up at Once registered, you will receive information on how to plan your drill and how to become better prepared for earthquakes and disasters.


The Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department is spotlighting its Fire Prevention Open House on Saturday, Oct. 13. This year’s theme is “Have Two Ways Out!” Firefighters want to encourage everyone to practice fire escape plans in their homes and businesses. On Oct. 13, all 37 fire stations will be open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Residents are invited to join in for fun activities, fire and life safety education tips, station tours, and most of all, a chance to meet their local firefighters. Residents are also encouraged to visit the Fire and Rescue Department’s new Facebook page or the department’s Web page,, for additional safety tips and department information.


Flu season is fast approaching.  The Fairfax County Health Department encourages everyone – ages 6 months and older – to get a flu vaccine as soon as possible. Vaccine is now available at Health Department clinics, your doctor’s office, and pharmacies and grocery stores throughout our community. An annual flu vaccine is the best way to protect against the flu. The Health Department says that when enough people get vaccinated, we can achieve what’s called “community immunity,” which stops the spread of flu and protects vulnerable people in our community. In addition to getting a flu vaccine, you can help stop spreading the germs that cause flu by washing your hands often, avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth, covering your coughs and sneezes, and staying home from work or school when sick. The Health Department also encourages residents to practice good health habits, such as getting adequate sleep, exercising, eating healthy and drinking plenty of fluids. Learn more about flu prevention, community immunity and find a vaccination center near you by visiting


Following the June 29, derecho storm, Fairfax County conducted a survey about emergency communications, devices and tools people use to access the information, specific questions about the county’s derecho response; and business and personal preparedness.A total of 5,795 respondents completed the survey between Aug. 13 and Sept. 7. Those respondents also generated nearly 17,000 written comments. Among some of the key findings:

  • 78 percent of respondents ranked the county’s overall emergency communications efforts as excellent or good.

  • 45 percent of respondents most prefer a mobile device such as an iPhone to get emergency information, followed by radio at 17.3 percent, TV at 16.8 percent and a desktop computer at 16.1 percent.

  • 69 percent of respondents lost power as a result of the storm, with 20 percent in the dark for more than four days. Even without power, though, 37 percent said they continued to access emergency information from the county.

  • Meanwhile, 82 percent reported they were ready to be self-sufficient for three days.

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 And remember, if you have a police, fire or medical emergency, call 9-1-1. For non-emergency needs, call 703-691-2131.

Contact Fairfax County: Phone, Email or Twitter | Main Address: 12000 Government Center Parkway, Fairfax, VA 22035
Technical Questions: Web Administrator

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