News to Use Podcast Transcript: Apr. 2, 2014



Good day, and welcome to the Fairfax County News to Use podcast – I’m your host Jim Person. Coming up, learn about recycling electronics and household hazards, the Environmental Excellence Award, fall cankerworms, distracted driving and Public Safety Telecommunicators Week. Links to topics mentioned in this podcast can be found online at

Spring is here and homes across Fairfax County are beginning to air out and freshen up from a long winter hibernation. As you begin your spring cleaning, are you coming across old electronics, hazardous materials or old documents that contain sensitive information? If so, Fairfax County offers solutions for properly disposing of – and in most cases recycling – them. To learn about upcoming special events for recycling electronics and shredding sensitive documents and to learn how you can dispose of household hazardous waste just visit us online at


Do you know someone who’s an environmental champion? You can nominate them for an Environmental Excellence Award from Fairfax County. This award is given to residents, organizations, businesses and county employees who give time and energy to benefit the environment, support county environmental efforts or who are a role model for others. The nomination deadline is May 31. Nomination forms and more information can be found under environment at


The fall cankerworm population is on the rise in Fairfax County. During their annual survey, urban foresters observed a significant increase in the number of fall cankerworms in the county’s Mason, Mount Vernon and Lee districts. The cankerworm is known to eat all of the leaves from trees if left unchecked. Defoliated trees may die. To prevent damage to trees, urban foresters organized a spray program for 2,200 acres in portions of these residential areas. Experienced helicopter pilots will spray selected areas of high fall cankerworm populations with Bacillus thuringiesnsis or Bt beginning around the third week in April. Bt is a naturally occurring bacteria and is approved by the Environmental Protection Agency for use over forested and residential areas. For more information about the 2014 fall cankerworm spray program call 703-324-5304, TTY 711.


April is National Distracted Driving Awareness Month. Did you know that in Fairfax County in 2012 there were 1,128 crashes attributable to distracted driving and 1,175 in 2013? The top five locations in 2013 for crashes involving distracted drivers were: Colvin Run Road/Leesburg Pike; Georgetown Pike/Leesburg Pike; Leesburg Pike/Lewinsville Road; Fairfax County Parkway/Sunrise Valley Drive; and Franconia Road/South Van Dorn Street. Urge those you care about to:

  • Stop using cellphones while driving.

  • Understand the dangers of the cognitive distraction to the brain.

  • Tell others about the dangers of cellphone distracted driving.

For more information about distracted driving, visit or


April 13-19 is Public Safety Telecommunicators Week in Fairfax County and across the nation. It’s a time to show appreciation for professionals in the field of public safety communications. Fairfax County’s public safety telecommunicators are part of the Department of Public Safety Communications – the county’s 9-1-1 Center. It is the largest such center in Virginia and one of the 50 largest 9-1-1 Centers in the country. The call takers at the Fairfax County 9-1-1 Center answer approximately 2,200 calls for assistance daily, both 9-1-1 and non-emergency. Congratulations to Fairfax County’s 9-1-1 Center staff during Public Safety Telecommunicators Week for being “the first of the first responders” working 24/7, 365 days a year.

That’s all for this News to Use podcast. Thanks for listening. For more information about the topics in this podcast and for continuous news updates, visit You may also call 703-FAIRFAX, that’s 703-324-7329, weekdays between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. News to Use is produced by the Fairfax County, Virginia, government.  

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