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Friday, March 1, 2013


MEDIA CONTACT: Mark E. Brady, Chief Spokesperson, 240-508-7930, mebrady@co.pg.md.us

The Prince George’s County Fire/EMS Department has developed a program to help remind you to keep Safety First.  Our “Safety First Day of the Month” program is a reminder that the first day of each month is the day to perform quick and easy tasks that will help keep you, your family and your property safe and healthy. 

By following our Safety First tips you can help us to reduce the number of incidents we respond to as well as early 911 notification will reduce the intensity and impact a fire will have by reducing injuries and death to our firefighters.  You are helping us to help you.  Keeping Safety First will ensure everyone, firefighter/medics and you, to go home.

Sunday, March 10, 2013, everyone moves their clocks forward 1 hour for Daylight Saving Time.  It is a natural reminder to also change the battery in your smoke alarm and CO detectors.  If you have been testing your alarm during Safety First Day of the Month program you may have already provided your life-saving devices with fresh batteries recently.  If you have not installed fresh batteries in the last 6 months;


Smoke Alarms and Carbon Monoxide Detectors 

Test your smoke alarm and carbon monoxide (CO) detector by pressing the TEST button on the cover of your devices.  If they emit an audible warning – you are done until next month.

If no audible warning is heard after pressing the TEST button – replace the battery and re-test.  If your alarm still does not emit a warning – immediately replace the alarm or detector with a new one.  Smoke alarms have a productive life of about 10 years.  CO detectors last about 8 years.

clear dust particles from on and around your alarms and detectors.  Dust particles may effect the detection of smoke or CO.  Use a clean dust rag or vacuum your device.

Install a working smoke alarm on every level of your home, especially outside of sleeping areas.  If you sleep with your bedroom door closed; install a working smoke alarm inside of your room.

When testing your smoke and CO alarms – allow your family or other home occupants to hear what the audible alarm sounds like.  This would also be an excellent time to review and practice your home escape plan.  Your plan should include 2 ways out of every room in your house and a safe meeting place outside.

Need a smoke alarm or carbon monoxide detector??  Call our Safety First Safety Program at 301-864-SAFE (7233) and arrange for these devices to be installed in your home; free of charge.

Breast Cancer Self-Exams

The Fire/EMS Department has committed to keeping Breast Cancer awareness a year round event.  Every month we will post reminders that adult women of all ages are encouraged to perform breast self-exams at least once a month. Remember, Safety First Day of the Month.  Johns Hopkins Medical center states,
“Forty percent of diagnosed breast cancers are detected by women who feel a lump, so establishing a regular breast self-exam is very important.”
While mammograms can help you to detect cancer before you can feel a lump, breast self-exams help you to be familiar with how your breasts look and feel so you can alert your healthcare professional if there are any changes.


The Fire/EMS Department responds to about 130,000 incidents per year.  About 100,000 of these incidents are EMS calls and there are a high percentage of these incidents that are for some type of diabetic related episode.  We want you to stay healthy and you can help reduce the number of paramedic responses by doing so.

The American College of Sports Medicine recommends getting regular exercise to help manage diabetes. However, people with diabetes may need to take certain precautions to ensure that exercise does not induce hypoglycemia (in someone taking insulin), hyperglycemia, or exacerbate complications resulting from their disease.
To work out safely, the ACSM suggests that you: 
            Check your blood sugar before you exercise. If it is > 300 mg/dL and no ketones are present, proceed cautiously.
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Check your urine or blood for ketones before exercising. Postpone if your blood sugar is greater than 250 mg/dl and ketones are present.
            Drink plenty of water before, during, and after your exercise session.
            Have a carbohydrate-rich snack, such as a piece of fruit or some yogurt or crackers—especially if you are taking insulin—if your blood glucose is < 100 mg/dL.

            Keep carbohydrate-rich snacks or drinks handy to eat before or after exercise to avoid hypoglycemia. If you are taking insulin, you know that when it peaks, your blood sugar drops—so avoid exercise during these times.

            Examine your tootsies before and after exercise for foot ulcers if you have lost sensation in your feet, and stick to moderate or low-weight-bearing activities.

            Avoid high-intensity exercise or any activities involving jumping up and down or dropping your head below your heart (such as yoga inversions) if you have diabetes-related vision issues. The increased pressure can damage the eyes.

            Get your doctor's approval before undertaking any exercise more intense than brisk walking.

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