Fire Prevention Week 2015: Working Smoke Alarms Save Lives

As many of you may know, Fire Prevention Week is being celebrated this week (October 4-10, 2015) in remembrance of the Great Chicago Fire of 1871. The tragic blaze killed more than 250 people, left 100,000 homeless, destroyed more than 17,400 structures, and burned more than 2,000 acres.

The theme of this year’s Fire Prevention Week is:

“Hear The Beep Where You Sleep. Every Bedroom Needs a Working Smoke Alarm!”

This year’s theme provides the perfect opportunity to educate the public about the importance of having working smoke alarms in every bedroom, outside each sleeping area, and on every level of the home (including the basement).

NFPA has everything you need to teach your community about the importance of working smoke alarms. Get started today:

  • Fire Prevention Week infographic in English and Spanish from the NFPA and USFA (see below or visit:

*Portions of this post are reproduced from NFPA’s Fire Prevention Week website, © 2015 NFPA.

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An Announcement from Jones & Bartlett Learning



Jones & Bartlett Learning (JB Learning) has joined forces with Fisdap, a software company that builds educational tools for Emergency Medical Services (EMS). The alignment of JB Learning and Fisdap brings together two organizations working to achieve excellence in EMS education and the highest quality patient care.

Fisdap’s objective is to improve the training experience by providing tools to help with record keeping, accreditation, certification testing, managing internship schedules, and tracking student activities. They offer a range of products, from Scheduler and Skills Tracker to valid and reliable Entrance, Unit, and Comprehensive Exams, all designed to improve EMS training programs and students’ training experiences.

JB Learning’s Public Safety Group is committed to enriching the educational experience of today’s EMS and fire educators, students, and professionals. Their educational programs and services improve learning outcomes and enhance student achievement by combining authoritative content with proven and engaging technology that meets the diverse needs of initial and continuing education.

The combination of JB Learning and Fisdap enhances the educational process for EMS students and professionals by fully integrating gold standard teaching and learning curricula with tools to schedule and track students’ field and clinical experiences and valid, reliable, and predictive exams for EMTs, AEMTs, and Paramedics from a single source. JB Learning digital curriculum solutions powered by Fisdap will predict success on certification exams and produce a better EMS professional.

“This perfectly positions our organizations to meet the needs of the EMS community now and into the future,” said Kimberly Brophy, Vice President, Executive Publisher at JB Learning. “We look forward to collaborating with Fisdap on the development of new tools and services to support the changing EMS landscape.”

“We see tremendous opportunities to expand the scope of the Fisdap community’s mission and our focus on research by working with JB Learning,” said Michael Johnson, CEO of Fisdap. “By offering the option to integrate JB Learning’s rich library of content and learning tools with Fisdap’s experience tracking, evaluations, and exams, we will move toward a more complete learning environment for EMS and public safety.”

About Jones & Bartlett Learning

Jones & Bartlett Learning, LLC, a division of Ascend Learning, LLC, is a world-leading provider of instructional, assessment, and learning-performance management solutions for the secondary, post-secondary, and professional markets. Across a broad spectrum of fields ranging from health care and emergency services to computer information systems, our educational technology applications and instructional assessment and performance-management solutions are revolutionizing how instructors teach and how students and professionals learn. With the most up-to-date, authoritative content available from academia and industry thought-leaders, Jones & Bartlett Learning is leading the way for educators, students, and professionals to discover new educational and professional skill-development opportunities to enable personalized learning— anytime, anywhere.

For more information on Jones & Bartlett Learning, visit

About Fisdap

Fisdap is the leader in online tools for EMS education, offering a suite of software resources to help EMS educators manage student internship schedules, document student experiential learning, administer secure exams, and maintain program accreditation. By fostering a culture of standards-based education, Fisdap brings the EMS community together to create innovative solutions for teaching and learning.

Facilitating EMS research is one of Fisdap’s most important objectives and we are proud to be a leader in EMS educational research. Over the years, the information and data that students enter into the Fisdap database has supported dozens of research projects—many of which have won awards and national recognition. We’re also building the EMS Reference, an online collection of peer-reviewed content, created by and for the EMS community.

For more information on Fisdap, visit

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Two New EMS-Themed Reality TV Shows on ABC

This summer, two new EMS-themed reality shows based in Boston, Massachusetts, are featured on the ABC network. The first, Save My Life: Boston Trauma which aired on July 19th, will follow patients with life threatening injuries from the field to the hospital. The six part series will focus on emergencies in Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Massachusetts General Hospital, and Boston Medical Center.

Watch the Save My Life: Boston Trauma trailer:

The second series, Boston EMS, started on July 25th and allows viewers the unique opportunity to ride along with the dedicated men and women of Boston Emergency Services to witness the first step in the chain of trauma care. These are some of the same first responders who treated the Boston Marathon bombing victims two years ago. Viewers will have the opportunity to meet some of these brave EMS professionals and watch them actively save lives on the streets of Boston.

Watch the Boston EMS trailer:

Real-life scenarios are a powerful tool to utilize in public safety training. Watching emergency scenarios can help first responders analyze the best course of action before they are in a real-life situation. Watching real life scenarios such as those displayed on Save My Life: Boston Trauma and Boston EMS allows public safety personnel to look at potential problems, consider potential solutions, and test out the results of their actions in a safe environment.

For more real-life scenarios, Jones & Bartlett Learning offers video-based case studies in You Are the Provider: Virtual Ride-Alongs. View a brief demonstration of the cases available:


Referenced in this blog:

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Staying Safe in Extreme Heat

surfsunThe warm summer months are upon us, and with rising temperatures comes the reminder to protect yourself, friends, family, and community members from heat-related illness. During these warmer months, it is imperative to be conscious of what your body is telling you and what you are demanding of your body. On days with a higher humidity index, there is a higher percentage of moisture in the air which demands more of our bodies. Staying hydrated and cool can help you avoid the two stages of overheating: heat exhaustion and heat stroke.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provides a list of heat exhaustion and heat stroke symptoms on their website:

▶ Heat Exhaustion: heavy sweating, weakness/fatigue, cold/pale/clammy skin, pale/flushed complexion, muscle cramps, fast/weak pulse, nausea/vomiting, fainting, dizziness/confusion

▶ Heat Stroke: high body temperature, hot/red/dry/moist skin, rapid/strong pulse, possible unconsciousness, chills, throbbing headache, confusion/dizziness, slurred speech, hallucinations

When these signs and symptoms are present, the CDC provides clear instructions on how to respond and when to seek medical attention.

To avoid heat-related illness, it is recommended that the following precautions are taken when dealing with extreme heat:

  • Stay hydrated: Drink more water than usual and don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink. Avoid alcohol or liquids containing large amounts of sugar.
  • Stay cool: Wear loose, lightweight, light-colored clothing. Take cool showers or baths. Stay in air-conditioned buildings as much as possible. Never leave anyone (infants, children, pets, etc.) in a closed, parked car.
  • Stay sun-safe: Protect your skin by applying (and reapplying!) sunscreen and wearing a brimmed hat when outdoors. Avoid outdoor activities during midday heat, if possible.
  • Stay informed: Check your local news for important health, safety, and weather updates.
  • Stay together: Check on friends, family, and neighbors and have someone do the same for you.

Children, the elderly, and those with chronic, severe illnesses are most at risk for heat-related illness, but it is important for all of us to heed the warnings above.

For first responders, it is especially important to stay vigilant about heat-related illness on the job. Whether wearing heavy clothing or equipment as part of their uniforms or being continuously active in the extreme heat, it is common for their bodies to overheat quickly. By paying close attention to their own health and safety needs first, public safety professionals will be better equipped to care for others who need their assistance in the field.

Referenced in this blog:

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National Pet Fire Safety Day

DogJuly 15, 2015, marks National Pet Fire Safety Day in the United States. According to the National Fire Protection Association, each year an estimated 500,000 pets are affected by home fires and approximately 1,000 of these fires are started by pets themselves. These statistics highlight the importance of pet fire safety in keeping animals and homes safe from accidental fires.

Prevent your pet from accidentally starting a fire

Implementing the following precautions can help to reduce the risk of pet-started fires in your home.

  • Remove or cover stove knobs. Be sure to remove stove knobs or protect them with covers before leaving the house. According to the National Fire Protection Association, a stove top is the number one piece of equipment involved in pet-started fires.
  • Extinguish flames. Be sure to extinguish any open flame (including fire places) before leaving your home.
  • Invest in flame-less candles. These candles contain a light bulb rather than an open flame and take the danger out of your pet knocking over a candle. Cats in particular are notorious for starting fires when their tails turn over lit candles.
  • Beware of water bowls on wooden decks. Do not leave a glass water bowl for your pet outside on a wooden deck.  The sun’s rays when filtered through the glass and water can actually heat up and ignite the wooden deck beneath it. Choose stainless steel, wooden, or ceramic bowls for your pet instead.

Ensure pet safety at all times

In the event of an actual home fire, taking the following precautions will help in the evacuation of family pets.

  • Secure young pets. Puppies and kittens are especially curious. To keep them from potential fire-starting hazards it may be safest to put them in crates or use baby gates to keep them in secure areas while you are away.
  • Keep your pets near entry/exit points when you are away from home. When you are out of the house, keep your pets in rooms with a door/window that directs outside. This will make it easier for fire fighters to rescue your pets if needed.
  • Practice escape routes with your pets. Keep leashes and collars close to exits in your home and practice fire drills periodically with your pets so they also know what to do in case of an evacuation.
  • Invest in a Pet Alert window cling. Having a Fire Emergency Window Cling on windows near the entrance to your home will help fire fighters know exactly how many animals are in your home. Be sure to keep the number of pets updated.

Pet owners can also educate and train themselves on pet first aid and emergencies by utilizing the Pet First Aid & Disaster Response Guide and Pet Emergency Pocket Guide from Jones & Bartlett Learning.

Referenced in this blog:


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Extinguish the Dangers Associated with Fireworks this Holiday Weekend

With the Fourth of July holiday around the corner, public safety professionals are gearing up for one of their busiest days of the year. Between cookouts, fire pits, and fireworks, it is no wonder there are more fires reported on Independence Day than any other day throughout the year.


The biggest culprit of these fires is often personal firework displays. Every year, people ranging in ages from toddlers to adults are hospitalized from improper use of fireworks with severe burns and other injuries that can even result in death. Civilians are not the only ones at risk. Often during these personal firework shows, nearby cars, homes, and other properties are damaged or destroyed. In previous years:

  • Fireworks have caused an estimated 17,800 reported fires, including 1,200 total structure fires, 400 vehicle fires, and 16,300 outside and other fires, causing 40 civilian injuries and $32 million in direct property damage.
  • Emergency rooms treated an estimated 11,400 people for fireworks-related injuries, 55% of these injuries were to the extremities and 38% were to the head.

However, it is easy to avoid these dangers by attending local firework displays hosted by professionals and monitored by highly trained safety personnel. This Independence Day, please take the safety of your families and friends into consideration while enjoying your holiday festivities!


National Fire Protection Association

U.S. Fire Administration


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Improving the Safety and Health of First Responders

safetyWk2015_squareOrganizations across the country are holding events this week to spread awareness about safety and health for all EMS and Fire personnel. Here are some of the events promoting International Fire/EMS Safety and Health Week:

  • East Whiteland Fire Department – Malvern, Pennsylvania: The East Whiteland Fire Department has a very strong emphasis on health. Many members of the 50 person department spend an hour each shift working on fitness. The fire fighters also regularly test their fitness with real-world tasks during training sessions on a fitness challenge circuit developed by the department. The challenge circuit mimics typical firefighting tasks performed at emergency scenes with an added emphasis on physical fitness. The circuit can be completed in gym clothing, bunker pants, bunker pants and bunker coat, all the way up to full gear and self contained breathing apparatus.
  • West Newbury Fire Department – West Newbury, Massachusetts: The West Newbury Fire Department has created a streamlined training and drill schedule that will promote safety awareness to members throughout the upcoming year. The department issued a challenge to each member to live a healthier lifestyle and make diet and exercise a bigger part of their daily routines. The department also initiated a buddy system to motivate personnel and create a better sense of teamwork, encouraging members to workout at the station.
  • North Lyon County Fire Protection District – Fernley, Nevada: The North Lyon County Fire Protection District is observing Safety and Health Week by focusing on collaborations with all area first responders including fire, EMS, law enforcement, and dispatchers.  The various departments have come together to work on trainings that will make calls more efficient and safer for the health and well-being of the entire team. Throughout Safety and Health Week, North Lyon County Fire Protection District is holding a series of health and safety workshops on topics ranging from local medical hazards to biomechanics of the body.

Visit the official International Fire and EMS Safety and Health website for more resources on how to incorporate training and procedures that facilitate safety and health in your area!

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Creating a Culture of Safety in 2015


This year, International Fire/EMS Safety and Health Week will be observed from June 14-20. Safety and Health Week is a joint initiative of the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) and the National Volunteer Fire Council (NVFC), and is supported by a network of emergency service and safety organizations.

Safety and Health Week is an annual event that is important to all public safety professionals because its objective is to improve the health and safety of fire fighters and EMS personnel, so that they have an increased chance of survival during emergencies and are healthier in the long-term.

The theme for Safety and Health Week this year is “Creating a Culture of Safety” and focuses on what can be done to improve safety and health in three specific areas:

Fire departments across the nation and throughout the world will take time during this week to increase awareness so that safety and health become priorities in all fire and EMS departments. For more information, please visit the International Fire/EMS Safety and Health Week website today.

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International Fire/EMS Safety and Health Week

culturesafetyJune 14 – 20, 2015 is International Fire/EMS Safety and Health Week.  This year’s theme is “Creating a Culture of Safety.” The goal of this awareness week is to promote and facilitate a culture of safety within local communities and departments.

How can I get involved in my community?

Social Media

Utilize your department or agency’s social media sites to promote Safety and Health Week in your community. Use posts from the 2015 International Fire/EMS Safety and Health Week Social Media Outreach Plan or create your own.  You can also update your Facebook and Twitter banners to ones that help to promote Safety and Health Week.

Flyers and Posters

Download flyers and posters and place them in your local department to provide safety and health reminders. You could also use the 2015 Safety and Health Week flyer in place of an ad in local or state fire service newsletters.

Submit Your Resources, Stories, and Photos

Share a story from your department! Share your department’s safety, health, and training resources in order to motivate others with success stories from your department. Your stories and resources may be included on the Safety and Health Week website and in materials from the IAFC and NVFC regarding the event.

All members of fire and emergency services are encouraged to utilize this week to focus on safety and health training and what you can do to create a culture of safety in your community, your department, and for yourself.

Safety and Health Week is a collaborative program embraced by more than twenty national and international fire and emergency-service organizations.  It is sponsored by the International Association of Fire Chiefs and the National Volunteer Fire Council. The event is coordinated by the IAFC Safety, Health and Survival Section and the NVFC’s Heart-Healthy Firefighter Program.

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Interested in Sharing Your EMS Expertise with Students and Fellow Educators?

emsauthorJoin the Jones & Bartlett Learning EMS Author Team!

If you have a passion for the highest-quality educational content and would like to join the Jones & Bartlett Learning author team, please submit a current CV or summary of your professional qualifications along with any writing samples you have to Please be sure to include your full name and contact information in the body of the email message.

To help us align our editorial opportunities with your interests and expertise, please tell us a little about yourself and let us know your content preferences by completing this brief survey by June 30, 2015:

Thank you in advance for your interest and time.

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