On January 10th, 2022, our skid pad played host to a wonderful group of guests.
Our friends at Regina Regional Local Immigration Partnership (RRLIP) and Catholic Family Services Regina connected us with Saskatchewan drivers who are new to driving on snow and ice. Experienced Saskatchewan drivers, SGI representatives, and local media also joined in the fun.
Together, they practiced emergency driving maneuvers with expert instruction from our traffic team. Our Traffic Safety Specialist, Al Gall, delivered program messaging to local media outlets. Of course, our own content team was on the scene as well!
Enjoy this recap of our special day on the skid pad:
Benson Akinbami had lived in the United Kingdom for many years before coming to Saskatchewan. He has enjoyed ice-free transportation for most of his life. After completing Skid Smart, Benson learned driving skills he may pass along to his family. "I cant sing it enough - for everyone who has the opportunity to come down here... and learn how to actually avoid trouble before trouble strikes."
"I was very curious about this activity... Because I had not taken (this type of) training anywhere." Says Nirad Shukla, a Saskatchewan newcomer from India. "After taking this course, I am 100% confident".
"The final exercise was very useful for me" said Thi Cam Van Mai, who arrived in Saskatchewan with her family one year ago. "I think that I can control my vehicle in winter condition(s)".
"If you have an incident, which you'll have from time to time I'm sure, you've gotten the experience now that you can control your car". Says Regina's Darlene Lepine. Darlene has lived in Saskatchewan her whole life, but was still able to learn some new skills to practice. "You might be able to stop an accident from happening".
Skid Smart in the News
Participating media outlets had a great time documenting the Skid Smart Collision Avoidance Course:
CTV Morning Live: https://regina.ctvnews.ca/video?clipId=2357074
CTV Evening News: https://regina.ctvnews.ca/sask-safety-council-sgi-host-winter-driving-course-1.5734524
Global Evening News: https://globalnews.ca/news/8502861/saskatchewan-safety-council-winter-driving-course/?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter
Our Traffic Safety Specialist Al Gall had some fun answering questions on John Gormley's live radio show:
Gormley Live: https://www.ckom.com/2022/01/17/show-segments-monday-january-17-2022/
The comments section was lively on the Regina Leader Post's Facebook page:
Regina Leader Post: https://www.facebook.com/reginaleaderpost/posts/6269266139756462
Do you need winter clothes? Do you know a family that might be in need? Visit sk.211.ca to find winter clothes in your community.
Have you recently seen someone clenched up, skin exposed, with incomplete winter clothing? Someone without gloves, proper footwear, or head protection?
It may be tempting to assume that person was unprepared, in a rush, or underestimated the weather that day. However, the reason someone may be dressed inappropriately for winter weather could be that they do not know any better, or, that they did not have a choice.
A decent winter jacket is the first step. But even in normal Saskatchewan winter conditions, a jacket is simply not enough. The reality is, winter clothing needs to be dressed in layers to be effective.
Fingers, toes, ears and nose. These extremities are the first targets of frostbite. Dressing for the weather means layering up, including hands, feet, neck, and face! Are you wearing a jacket, but still feeling cold? Gloves, scarf, head and face warmers could be the missing pieces to your winter outfit.
Three misunderstandings about winter clothing:
1. “Clothes need to fit tightly.”
Tight fitting socks, shoes, and underwear can actually constrict blood flow, leaving you feeling colder than before. Dry, loose-fitting clothing will trap air between layers, which is what keeps you warm.
2. “Working hard = warmer”
Keep in mind that sweat is the catalyst to hypothermia, as too much moisture will rob your body of heat. In an emergency, or rescue situation, “keep moving” is good advice. In normal conditions, sweating under your layers is a bad thing!
3. “A good winter jacket is enough”
A jacket or “shell” is a great addition to your winter outfit. But, dressing for the weather needs to be a full body effort! Any cracks, crevasses, and gaps in your layers will drain body heat.
Do you have extra clothes to donate to someone in need? Do you know of someone, a family, or a group of people in need of winter clothing? Visit sk.211.ca to find donation centers in your community!
At 83 years old, Bob Butts had never imagined that regular exercise would change his life so dramatically. After a serious medical incident, his balance and strength were jeopardized, which put him at risk of a serious fall. Bob understood that his health would need more than a quick fix. It was time to become a consistently active person.
“I had a Stroke in January of 2016, so I came here. When I came here, I couldn’t lift my hand up over my head. I couldn’t get out of the chair without help, and I weighed 256 pounds.”
Bob, and his personal trainer Kim Goetz, joke that Bob is now a “gym rat”, meaning he is someone who can often be found at the gym. With a nice morning routine and professional guidance in the weight room, Bob has seen consistent improvement in his physical abilities. The health benefits Bob has experienced from regular exercise keep him coming back.
“I lost 65 pounds of fat and put on some muscle. I can walk in a straight line now, before I was all over the place. I used to get headaches… Kim got me doing these stretches, and before I realized it, I didn’t have headaches anymore.”
Bob came to the gym so he could improve his balance, lose weight, and gain strength. While these goals were achieved, Bob also discovered that working out improved his mental health. This has greatly increased Bob’s confidence in himself and his physical abilities.
“I have no health issues at all anymore. I want to be able to do things with my grandchildren, and great-grandchildren… My wife.”
Bob’s journey reminds us that preventing falls and other serious injuries begins with ourselves. The most common reason for permanent and total disability is falls. Every year, 1 in 3 seniors experience a falling incident. After ensuring our homes are hazard-free, the next step in preventing falls is to strengthen our bodies. Our body is the vehicle in which we navigate our lives. To train our bodies with exercise is to respect our overall health.
If you or a loved one wishes to investigate active lifestyles, first check with your doctor or health care practitioner. There are many Saskatchewan based resources to assist you in your fitness journey:
Saskatchewan Seniors Mechanism - Bringing together Saskatchewan seniors organizations
Forever in Motion - Helping older adults become physically active in their communities
Saskatchewan Senior Fitness Association - Activity programs for adults fifty years of age and older
Active Aging Canada - Trusted information and resources for older Canadians
Overcast commutes, foggy days, and snowy weather. These conditions of varying darkness await Saskatchewan drivers, especially in winter months.
Daytime running lights (DRL’s) do not activate your taillights, which brighten up your vehicle so other drivers can see you in low-light conditions. Automatic headlights are also unreliable, as the automated system sometimes has trouble recognizing these low-light conditions.
Along with regularly inspecting all of your vehicle lights, activating your low-beam headlights helps ensure that your vehicle will stay bright and visible in the winter driving season where low-light conditions are common. There is no harm in using low-beam headlights even in the daytime, so when in doubt, flick your headlights to the “On” position. Just remember to turn them “Off” when your journey is finished!
In Saskatchewan, our seasons come in full force. From blazing hot summers to stone cold winters; from the darkest days to seventeen hours of sun - our Province is a land of extremes.
So then, why is there a bias in our seasonal preparation? At the earliest possible moment in the spring, excited residents break out T-shirts, shorts, and other warm weather attire from storage. Vehicles are eagerly cleaned out and tuned up for summer driving. With all this excitement and preparation for one season, why is it that we tend to ignore the warning signs of an approaching winter? Perhaps it is because we want to squeeze out every bit of fun from the last whisper of these warmer days, and perhaps there is some element of denial that very soon our dark autumn environment will change to a familiar wintery white.
That’s right, the dreaded “S” word will be here before we know it (We know, dreaded only by some). Yes, this means “Snow”, and for those driving in Saskatchewan’s Winter - the “S” word can also have more dangerous meanings, like “Slip” “Slide” and “Skid”.
‘That’ day will come eventually. You know - ‘that’ first snowfall, and ‘those’ frozen roads. ‘That’ period of dangerous driving, where drivers must suddenly adjust their habits. The change in road conditions can happen very quickly. Unfortunately, that also means collisions will be more frequent, and insurance claims will be high.
Anyone with experience in the auto industry knows this season well. Autoworkers across Saskatchewan, like Kenton King, know firsthand that this ‘slippery season’ can be a busy one.
With some smart preparation, this season can be different for you. Why wait for the path to your garage or winter storage shed to become wet with snow? You can be ready for winter driving conditions now, by loading your vehicle with brushes, scrapers, and survival gear before the snow flies. You can switch to your winter tires early this year, and you can practice winter driving techniques as a review to get you into that ‘winter driving mindset’. Need to drive somewhere? Why not plan ahead and leave earlier than you usually would, since you know that winter driving conditions add time to most trips.
Prepare yourself at ‘this’ time of year, so ‘that’ time of year won’t be so difficult. Take it from autoworkers in Saskatchewan – you don’t want to be part of the dangerous and expensive mess that is ‘Slippery Season’!
Today, our own Traffic Safety Specialist and Skid Smart Collision Avoidance Instructor, Al Gall, participated in the kickoff of SGI’s November Traffic Safety Spotlight alongside Tyler McMurchy, SGI Media Relations. The two provided information on intersection and winter driving safety before fielding questions.
Intersections account for almost half of the total collisions in Saskatchewan. The onset of winter driving conditions only amplifies the danger in these high-risk areas.
This November, make intersection safety a part of your driving awareness efforts. What preparations can you make to ensure safe winter driving?
The leaves are falling, the air is beginning to feel cool, and we are starting to pull out our jackets each morning only to take them off again at Noon. We are beginning to prepare for the dreaded ‘S’ word, which will be here before we know it. Perhaps I’m not the only one who has noticed there is something else in the air... the spirit of Halloween!
We are beginning to see the spooky yards with decorations, parents in the store with costumes in hand and carts full of candy. This time of year is magical for all ages! Children will soon fill the sidewalks with all kinds of characters, ready to experience the fun filled evening that Halloween provides for the youngsters in our community. For adults, seeing all the children can bring us pure happiness and laughter, at least it does for me. When I see the different costumes, and the dedication that children have to venturing out in our Saskatchewan weather on Halloween night, I enjoy seeing their spirit and sense their joy. To witness the little ones taking part in a tradition that has been passed down from generation to generation is magical to see.
With all the fun to be had, we want to ensure safety is top priority! Each child should be able to have a 'spooktacular' night from start to finish, and get home safe to enjoy some treats to end the night. Watch the video to review a few safety tips:
We are almost ready to shout, “Trick or Treat”! Halloween night can be a chilly one, I know putting our costumes over a snowsuit is no fun, but being warm means keeping ourselves safe. The weather is constantly changing at this time of year, so to ensure adults and the children are dressed appropriately, double check what the temperature will be for trick or treating.
Sometimes there are potential hazards when it comes to decorations, such as candles inside Halloween decorations, perhaps inside pumpkins, so it is best to keep a safe distance and be cautious.
Being visible is one thing, but having visibility is another! Are you able to see out of your costume? Perhaps there is a potential tripping hazard with your costume, we want to protect ourselves and others from having a trip occur. Make sure an adult goes through each child’s candy haul before they indulge in their delicious collection. Any suspicious items in the bag like opened wrappers or lose candy should be discarded, to be on the safe side.
Respect the space of others while going door to door. Social distancing is a big part of the world we live in today, so keep a safe distance of 6 feet from others who are not part of your group.
Although Halloween is mostly an outdoor adventure, face masks worn can be a brilliant idea to keep each other safe. Consider wearing a face mask if your costume leaves your face exposed. By following a few safety tips, your Halloween night will be nothing but 'TERROR-ific' fun!
Let’s hear from you! What will you and your family be dressed as this Halloween?
Community Relations Coordinator
The ultimate title of ‘man’s best friend’ has been well earned over the last millennia by our canine companions, as the Dog’s loyal relationship with humanity has been unmatched. That is, until recently. A new companion has arrived: It is electronic, it fits in our pocket, and even though its computing power surpasses most ten-year-old desktops, we still underwhelmingly call it a ‘phone’. As these electronic devices become more integral to our everyday lives, this new iteration of ‘man’s best friend’ is now regularly in our hands at the coffee shop, grocery store, at our workplaces, and in our homes. Rather than setting aside dedicated time to operating these devices, they are invited with us wherever we go. This is where a danger exists, because as we rely on our mobile electronic tools more and more, the temptation to multitask grows stronger. The lines are becoming blurred between a safe moment and an unsafe moment to operate these handheld devices, because their use as we complete daily tasks is perceived as more natural every day.
What can be said about our new electronic companions that have not become obvious? Yes, they are a distraction. Yes, they have become necessary. And no, there is no alternative for them in sight. Discovery, communication, entertainment-it’s all there on our devices. For those concerned about dangerous distractions, the expulsion of these devices from society cannot be a reasonable objective. No rational argument can be made to remove these machines from our lives. Limitations on their use, like distracted driving laws, are working towards a solution. But what about other situations where multitasking on a mobile device becomes a distraction?
The real problem with our new electronic best friend is becoming clear. These powerful handheld computers can present a danger to our wellbeing because we seem unable to resist operating them whilst conducting our daily business. Learning which situations are suitable to sneak a quick look down at our devices, and which are not, is a valuable step in understanding the risky situations we put ourselves in every day. So, when is an appropriate time to utilize these mobile tools? If it is too distracting to use a device while driving or cycling, is an everyday task like walking down the street also too hazardous to justify operating our ‘phones’?
In 2018, researchers in British Columbia at UBC Kamloops investigated this concept of distracted walking. Researchers set up cameras to track the prevalence of mobile device use at a busy intersection. They found that over 1/3 of pedestrians were using a device while crossing the street. The analysis revealed that “A significant difference was found between mean gait characteristics of step velocity, cadence, double limb support, and mean step length during normal walking and walking while texting”. Long study short, these distracted pedestrians became an identifiably different type of pedestrian as they used their electronic devices.
Prevention of injuries and fatalities is the reason we design and implement walking infrastructure and traffic accommodation. These safety measures are designed to protect us as undistracted pedestrians, focused on walking, with our eyes generally directed forward. But, could any preventative measure be enough for the new generation of multitasking, tech-savvy, and extremely distracted pedestrians?
Being late is a terribly anxious feeling. If we are driving a vehicle while running late, this terrible feeling is only amplified. Every red light becomes a personal attack, every vehicle in front of us becomes an obstruction, and worst of all, there is almost no solution to the problem. Once someone has fallen behind schedule, that time has passed and can’t be brought back. This is how being late can provoke dangerous temptations. Some drivers will try speeding, quick maneuvering, rushing through intersections, and otherwise turning their vehicle into a Formula 1 racecar, all in the hopes of “saving time”. In this situation, sending a text message with warnings and excuses of your impending lateness can become a major temptation. When we see these reckless drivers on the roads, it’s obvious to the rest of us in traffic - “Wow, that person must be late!”. As we contemplate these pressures while driving in a rush, running late must be considered the most significant daily temptation to push our driving behaviors beyond the realm of safe.
So, what are the risks of driving with this rushed mindset? When it comes to distracted driving, most of us know that using a cell phone is unsafe. For about 11 years, there have been laws in Saskatchewan that carry some considerable punishments for doing so. Even with these well-known rules that have been proven to save many lives, “driver inattention and distraction is responsible for 21% of all collisions” – https://www.sgi.sk.ca/handbook/-/knowledge_base/drivers/distracted-driving. Speed also continues to be a major problem in Saskatchewan. Drivers, at times, claim that “being late” was their reason for driving above the speed limit. Being late is known to create anxiety, and an anxious person is one who will more likely resort to unsafe behaviors. There is a temptation to correct lateness by speeding, which multiplies the chances of a collision. It seems that no matter how aware a driver may be of these dangerous behaviors, the temptation to overcome a mistake, like leaving late, becomes too strong to ignore.
If we think about it, the simple truth is this: By the time our vehicle pulls out of a parking spot, the opportunity to “save time” with any significant effect is gone. So, let's rewind to the source of being late, to the original reason why one would become anxious, and otherwise tempted to engage in speeding, distracted driving, or a variety of other unsafe behaviours in the first place. Any journey starts by leaving the current destination. So, what can be done in preparation, before our journey begins, to ensure that we are ready to drive while staying distraction and anxiety free?
Community Stories from Community Voices with the New Saskatchewan Safety Council Content Team: A Modern Way for us to Work Together
As families and friends are finally able to spend a bit more quality time together, a sense of unification has filled the summer air with a fellowship that was sorely missed. Co-workers have been reunited in their workplaces, isolated individuals have returned to their families, and children are able to play together after what must have seemed like an eternity. Wedding vows are being recited, anniversaries are being celebrated, and grandparents are finally meeting their new grandchildren for the very first time.
By following our organization, you have indicated that the safety of those closest to you is a top priority. Today there is a vast, and often overwhelming, amount of information in constant competition for your attention. As this information battlefield plays out on our phones, computers, newspapers, and social media apps, it has become clear that your attention is a very valuable thing. We are honoured by your decision to share your attention with us.
The Council has always taken pride in listening to and responding as the needs of the community changes. Our newly formed content team will do just that, in a more modern and rapidly responsive way. We will listen to, learn from, and respond to the residents of this province, giving a voice to issues that matter most
“Our new Content Team will not be about the glamourization of traumatic events in an attempt to attract eyeballs. It will take the shape of an ongoing sustainable series of conversations that will prevent such events from happening in the first place. It won't be about talking at people and telling them what to do. Nor will it be about bubble-wrapping our youth,” said Robert Weitzel, Director of Development. “We will be asking questions that uncover answers that will lead to better hazard awareness. What we are doing will help people understand and manage the risky situations they encounter every day, regardless of where those happen. Not only will we continue to develop new resources and training tools based on these conversations, but we will also regularly post new video content, host live shows that will be simulcast to multiple social media platforms, facilitate call-in shows, and produce podcasts. Our audience will be the drivers of what we do next.”
“A Province of Safety Excellence” can only be achieved with you. We are excited to meet with community leaders, to continue work with Saskatchewan organizations, and to serve anyone who wishes to participate in the conversations. Our subscribers want to hear from you, so they can learn from you. Our eyes and ears are open. Join us as we explore Saskatchewan like never before.
For many people, the phrase “Ground Disturbance” conjures up images of big equipment turning up dirt to build roads or other infrastructure. This is indeed the case; this type of heavy construction recognizably engages in ground disturbance operations. However, many other residential and civil construction projects regularly deal with underground facilities. This means that ground disturbance concepts extend to many popular trades outside of heavy construction. Landscaping, residential projects, other construction fields, and the agriculture industry all actively require awareness of ground disturbance operations. The Saskatchewan Safety Council is proud to announce the latest addition to the Career Safety Education program - “Ground Disturbance for Saskatchewan Workers,” a completely free course aimed at young workers in the province seeking to enter these common trades that deal with disturbing the earth’s surface.
Three organizations – The Saskatchewan Common Ground Alliance, Heavy Construction Safety Association of Saskatchewan, and the Saskatchewan Safety Council have collaborated to produce this training course on Ground Disturbance. Course material covers concepts that are directly applicable to ground disturbance operations while also including generalized concepts designed to build a young worker’s awareness in many other fields that work in soil or alongside utility infrastructure.
The main objective of the course is to teach students how to properly identify underground facilities while also providing information to help students maintain safe practices when dealing with soil. “New and young workers often find some of their first jobs in sectors that deal with ground disturbance concerns. Every year, we hear statistics of people being injured and sometimes killed in this line of work, but these are not statistics, they are our friends, neighbours, nieces, nephews, and children. Through this multi-agency collaboration and the financial support of the SCGA, we can make sure that every person who needs to take ground disturbance training to learn about the hazards and risks in their work, can do so without barriers.” - Ryan Jacobson, CEO, Saskatchewan Safety Council
For employers in industries that frequently engage in ground disturbance operations, a young employee who has taken Ground Disturbance Training will be much better oriented to receive onboarding training than an employee who has not. Many employers in these common industries will recognize the important concepts that the course will introduce. These ground disturbance concepts include Identification of worksite equipment, designation of colour-coded flags and markers, the influence of differing soil types, hazard identification, proper reporting procedures, emergency preparedness, and other relevant subjects as it pertains to ground disturbance. These subjects were developed in consultation with the Heavy Construction Safety Association of Saskatchewan, a non-profit safety association dedicated to promoting the arts and science of safety to the “R” code employers & their employees in order to try to reduce incidents & accidents that result in injury & property damage. “As we see younger employees entering our industry constantly, this is a fantastic opportunity to build that safety skill mentality right as they start their careers.” says Natalya Uchacz, Safety Program Consultant, of the HCSAS.
A key objective when developing the course was to ensure the highest possible accessibility and affordability to the public. To address accessibility, “Ground Disturbance for Saskatchewan Workers” will be provided online available to anyone with an email address, and it is free. Certificates of completion are provided, rewarding students of the program with a lifelong token of their valuable knowledge and experience gained. This certificate gives a valuable reference for the students completing the program as they apply for work in the relevant industries.
The Saskatchewan Common Ground Alliance (SCGA) develops and promotes “effective damage prevention practices” when dealing with underground facilities, believing in a collective approach to damage prevention and worker safety in the province. Developers of “Sask 1st Call”, the SCGA passionately supports the Ground Disturbance training initiative as a preventative measure in the fight against property loss and workplace injury in the field. “The cost to the economy of these incidents is significant, but more importantly, there is also a risk of injury and even death from events that are most often entirely preventable,” said Derrick Mann, SCGA President. Developing safety habits when one is young “produces a lifetime of benefits” says Mann, believing a graduate of the program may become a future role model to champion safe behavior.
Collaborative efforts such as this address the needs of Saskatchewan people. This exciting initiative is one more example of how the Saskatchewan Safety Council, Saskatchewan Common Ground Alliance, and the Heavy Construction Safety Association of Saskatchewan are working together to create a province of safety excellence.
The course was officially launched on July 15th 2021, at a public event hosted by Wappel Construction at a jobsite in Northeast Regina.
Being a female and deciding to ride a motorcycle can often entail a journey that is different than that of a man. Sometimes a woman, a girl, or a lady if you will, faces questions the guys may not. A woman's first time on a bike need not be any different, and having the right mentor or coaches makes all the difference. The female riding community is growing rapidly. If you have questions about becoming a motorcycle rider, the videos and audio files below may answer a few of them.
Looking to learn to ride? Visit https://www.sasksafety.org/basic-rider-training.html
Leaders in Ag Safety is a targeted one-day event for farm owner/operators, ranchers, and agri-business safety managers.
This event focuses on educating the next generation of agriculture/agri-business by building and strengthening connections between the farming community and the safety community.
This year, the Industrial Safety Seminar has added sessions specifically for producers to learn from and connect with safety managers and experts on a variety of topics such as:
• Mental health
• The Farm Safety Program
• Safety Around Power
• Farming Coverage in Saskatchewan - WCB
• Safety Resources and PPE
This is a new addition to the Industrial Safety Seminar will take place on Monday, February 3rd, 2020.
Forming a part of our Industrial Safety Seminar, the one-day Leaders in Ag Safety event will engage farm owner/operators, ranchers, and agri-business safety managers in conversations that will lead to a reduction in the number of injuries in their business, create business efficiencies, save them money and time. A limited number of seats are available and for most farm leaders, the cost will be covered. Register today for the 2020 Leaders in Ag Safety by emailing AgLeaders@sasksafety.org.
The 47th Annual Industrial Safety Seminar will be held at the World Trade Centre at Prairieland Park, Saskatoon, SK. The day begins with Breakfast, after which, Ag Leaders attend the Keynote speaker presentation for the day followed by a series of Leaders in Ag Safety sessions, lunch, and a private tour of the Exhibitors at their leisure. (Full agenda TBD).
This one-day event is a great networking opportunity for producers and safety experts alike offering both a chance to learn from and share knowledge with each other. It provides an insight into what the Industrial Safety Seminar is all about in hopes that ag operators will be more inclined to become involved with the event not only as delegates but also as presenters and exhibitors.
The Council realizes that many producers/agri-business managers are interested in safety and may not have the time to attend for the full 2.5 days but may be able to experience Seminar in a condensed version with sessions aimed at agriculture safety.
This event is aimed at producer’s province wide that have a farm/agri-business operations with three or more employees.
Perhaps you heard, we ran a contest for schools this past fall from September 3rd to October 18th, in which schools could enter to win a grand prize of $3,000.00 by registering their class for Career Safety Education and then completing the program by the deadline date. We had more than 30 schools in the running, and we are happy to announce that Albert E. Peacock Collegiate are the lucky winners!
Vern, the teacher of the winning class, was speechless when he heard the news, thanking us repeatedly. When we asked him about the program, he said “The Career Safety Education covers all the topics I teach as well as others. The program is a very well-rounded course that allows students to think of their future in the world of work and how it may affect them and their safety. Introducing youth to these topics in the safety of school rather than the possibly rushed atmosphere of the work world can, and should, provide a better foundation of safety.”
On November 4, 2019, I took a little road trip to hand deliver their prize and spend some time with the winning class. When I arrived at the school, the students and Vern welcomed and thanked me. We took a quick group photo of the winning class in the library and then celebrated with a surprise pizza lunch from Vern. Before leaving, I asked the students a few safety questions and was thrilled that each student answered each and every question with confidence and a smile. Vern expressed multiple times how amazing his students are, and, after meeting them myself, I agree that Vern is one lucky teacher.
Winning $3,000.00 for your school can be exciting, especially when you brainstorm ideas for what your school will do with the winnings. Vern expressed that “The school will discuss the idea of possibly buying or upgrading signage for the school regarding safety and they plan to set up a scholarship that would be available to students from all grades regarding school safety." He also said that "The importance of safety is often talked about, but not often is a program like this is provided to do anything about improving safety.”
From all of us at Saskatchewan Safety Council, thank you for participating in our Career Safety Education program.
Pictured here is Star, she was up for adoption when we were creating this safety content but has since been adopted and I am sure she is enjoying her new home with her family.
Our pets are a part of our family, and to some, they are our children. Remember to keep them safe and cool in the summer heat. Now that fall is here, we may not have to worry about the hot summer temperatures, but we do have to remember these tips for when summer comes around again. Lavina, Amanda, & Star
Lavina, Amanda, & Star
Safety content is being created each and every day. I want to say a huge thank you to our volunteers, our subscribers, our members, and our community champions for your help in creating, sharing, and helping us work towards a province of safety excellence in Saskatchewan!
If you would like to become a volunteer with us, please reach out, we would be overjoyed to work with you. You can send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org today.
Thanks for taking time to read the Blog. For now, we have to say good-bye to summer, and hello to fall! Stay tuned everyone, more safety content is on the way.
Driving through a school zone is more than simply slowing down to 30 km/h. It also requires a strong layer of attention and patience, which are most effective when they are working hand in hand. This gives drivers the ability to better react to a potentially sudden situation. A child can be injured just as severely by a car driving at 30 km/h as one moving at 50km/h however the reduced speed gives the driver much more control of the vehicle and the ability to pay more attention to the surroundings.
An excellent safe practice is to create a wider school zone area than that of the posted 30km/h signs. You don’t necessarily have to slow down (it would be great if you did) but widening the zone by a few blocks has many benefits. You mentally prepare yourself before entering the actual school zone instead of spending the first block paying your attention to slowing down. As well, children are walking to and from school much farther away than the school zone so you’re creating an even safer environment for them to walk in. This is especially important during the winter season.
Keep in mind the attention of a child can be very narrow. While they understand safety rules and procedures, such as looking both ways before crossing a street, they may not be able to see a potential problem as far ahead as an adult. Therefore, it is up to the driver to take up the responsibility and make sure we’re ready for anything that can happen in a school zone. Slow down, pay attention, and make safety the right choice.
School buses are a unique vehicle on the road. They make frequent stops, often in places that other vehicles don’t such as railway crossings. They have access to areas that we aren’t used to accounting for in normal traffic flow which can catch us by surprise. They also have a lot of lights and signs that can be confusing for other drivers to understand what exactly to do since there are different models of school buses and different laws that apply to them. If we aren’t prepared for all of the extra possible scenarios a school bus can present to us, then the chances of an incident increase.
The best way to start preparing yourself is to know the school bus laws. Each city, town and village has their own bylaws for school buses so if you move to a new area, check with City Hall for clarification. For Regina and Saskatoon, the use of flashing safety lights and bus stop arms are prohibited. While this seems odd, there are actually very good reasons for this. As Sgt. Koroluk from the Regina Police Service states:
Another way to adjust your driving during the school season is to leave 5-10 minutes earlier than normal for work for the first few weeks of September. This will give you that extra time to deal with increased traffic in school zones and to compensate if you have school buses in front of you that make frequent stops. If you find after those few weeks that there isn’t any interruption, then go ahead and take back those extra 10 minutes of sleep!
Not only will making this time adjustment make sure you get to work on time, it also ensures that you keep calm during your drive. If a school bus is holding you up and making you late for work, your stress level will increase. You might accelerate quickly around a bus or speed above the limit after the bus isn’t in front of you which greatly increases your chance of a traffic incident. Then you’ll be late for work and you potentially injure someone.
Take the time to plan for the increased traffic changes from school buses. Students, parents, and bus drivers will all appreciate you for it.
A popular practice for the police during the school year is to set up speed radars in school zones. It is a pretty sure bet that every school zone in your city or town will see a police setup within the first few weeks of the school year.
A vehicle takes a longer distance to stop even at slightly higher speeds. A simple concept, yes, but it’s more than you may know.
According to Forensic Dynamics Inc., here is the stopping distance for vehicles travelling at 40/50/60 km/h in ideal conditions:
40 km/h = 8.6 meters
50 km/h = 14.05 meters
60 km/h = 20.24 meters
These numbers, of course, can vary depending on the type of vehicle, tires, etc. however the point is that even from 40 to 50 km/h there is a significant difference in how long it takes your vehicle to stop.
It would be a true achievement if a school zone speed radar blitz issued zero tickets. That is the goal of the police service and it should be everyone else’s goal as well to make safety the right choice and not speed.
by Amanda LePine - Community Relations Coordinator
The other day, I had mentioned to Lavina that I’d never been to the Vintage Tea Room in Regina. She said, “They have great food, and an amazing atmosphere, we should go!” So Lavina and I went for lunch that same day.
I can’t speak for Lavina, but I know the experience I had was extraordinary. Several types of tea to choose from, a large menu with tasty mixtures of ingredients, and the dessert list was my weakness. I had 3 different kinds of desserts, and every single bite was delicious. I highly recommend a visit to the Vintage Tea Room. The owners, Karen and Doug, sure have a passion for what they do and they provide outstanding customer service.
As we indulged in lunch, I mentioned how neat it would be to talk about our new informal speaker series called Safe-Tea while in the Vintage Tea Room. “We could get all dressed up, sip tea, and make content to share with everyone in the community,” I suggested.
Now, you may be wondering, what is Safe-Tea? The Safe-Tea is a FREE one-hour presentation at a venue of your choice. The Saskatchewan Safety Council created Safe-Tea as a platform for conversations with seniors and their caregivers. Initially, the topics will include home fall prevention, fraud prevention, and our Mature Driver Refresher Course (55-Alive).
Within a couple of days, Lavina and I were back at the Vintage Tea Room for our production day. Karen and Doug were thrilled to have us. Karen brought out her special silver tea set and shared with us some tea drinking etiquette. Did you know lifting your pinky while drinking tea is not proper? I did not! To properly sip tea, you can hold your teacup with both hands, but when you bring your cup to your lips… you should be holding the teacup with one hand. I always used to loop my finger through the teacup handle, which as it turns out, is also improper. That day, I learned way more than I thought there was to know about teas and the proper way to drink them. Now, I am ready to drink all the tea and smile knowing I’m a proper tea-drinking lady. Lavina and I will be taking a #Safe-Tea break often.
Safe-Tea builds relationships with active seniors in the community. We focus on seniors, their families, caregivers, and community service providers. This is an opportunity to bring quality information to those in our community.
Want to host a Safe-Tea event? Call us today or visit our website to choose a date and time. Let’s take a #Safe-Tea break together! We’ll even supply the tea. Everything is better with tea, right?
We are looking for passionate, capable partners who would like to promote and champion Safe-Tea events. The Safe-Tea focuses on building awareness and delivering safety information to seniors in our community. If you would like to support Safe-Tea, please email: email@example.com.
Watch the video and let us know what you think her answer was.
Would he have increased the likelihood of getting where he was going with a vehicle inspection before setting out with his grand plan?
What does your pre-trip walkaround or inspection look like? Comment below or share a video. Have a little fun with it. Share your inspection routine (dance) using #JiveB4UDrive
Sometimes things don't go quite as you had planned. A pre-trip vehicle inspection increases the likelihood of getting where you planned to go.
Developing a practice where you walk around your vehicle checking to ensure tires have air in them, that nothing is behind or underneath your vehicle (inclusive of puddles caused by fluid leaks), and that all lights are working before driving is a safe choice.
This habit should be combined with a more thorough weekly and monthly routine multi-point inspection to ensure you are not surprised by a failure or breakdown at the least opportune time. Worse yet, having a vehicle system failure that leads to a traffic incident resulting in injury or death.
Lavina talks about her on-location video shoot with Amanda at the Vintage Tea Room creating a promotional piece for the Council's Safe-Tea events. The Safe Tea sessions, held at various care homes and community centres, engage residents in conversations about the prevention of fraud and discuss the creation and maintenance of a living environment which will reduce the likelihood of a slip, trip or fall.
Exercise, know your limits, rest often, consider a personal emergency device, and keep important numbers by the phone in case you do need help quickly. Know others?
Find more free fall prevention resources and senior safety information at http://www.sasksafety.org/resources/seniors-safety
Tips to keep your stairs and stairways safe. Have tips you'd like to share? Comment below.
Knowing how to properly insert an earplug will pay off in the bedroom and in the workplace. The later leading to an increase in the possibility that you may actually be able to hear your grandchildren wish you a happy birthday.