It is that time of year again: flu season. Hopefully, you have gotten a flu shot. If you have not, there is still time to get one.
Despite your best efforts you may, however, come down with the flu. Our friends at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have helpful information on what you should do if you get sick. It also lists the symptoms.
According to the CDC, most people with the flu have a mild illness and do not need medical care or antiviral drugs. We sometimes receive 9-1-1 calls for people with mild, flu-like symptoms who really just need to stay home, rest and drink plenty of fluids.
Of course, the flu can become very serious and potentially life-threatening. The CDC website also lays out what the emergency warning signs of flu sickness are. If you exhibit any of those symptoms a 9-1-1 call to your Fairfax County Firefighters and Paramedics may be in order.
To learn more please go here: The Flu: What To Do If You Get Sick
Great advice from our friends at the National Weather Service. Make sure you, and your loved ones, are dressing appropriately for cold weather. Not dressing appropriately and staying outside too long in cold temperatures could lead to serious cold related illness and injury such as Hypothermia or Frostbite.
Accessible information can be found at http://www.nws.noaa.gov/om/cold/
Your Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department encourages you to take safety precautions if you are going to shovel snow.
It is important to consider your physical limitations. Wear weather appropriate gear to keep you warm. Only shovel snow if you are physically able to do so. This snow is a wet and heavy type of snow. Remember to take it slow when shoveling snow!
Tips via our friends at the National Weather Service.
Fairfax County firefighters and paramedics need your help today and tomorrow to potentially save lives and property. For those residents who are a part of the Adopt-a-Hydrant program – you know what to do!
The expected snow accumulations, combined with the after-effects of plowing roads may result in fire hydrants being partially, or completely, buried in snow. It is vital that firefighters be able to quickly access a hydrant in the event of a fire. Immediate access to a water supply helps to swiftly extinguish the fire and prevent loss of life and property.
All residents, who are physically able to do so, are asked to keep the nearest fire hydrant accessible and free of snow and ice. Please clear a three-foot area around the hydrant and ensure there is a path to the roadway so the hydrant is visible and easily accessible.
Please take the time NOW to find the nearest fire hydrant to your home so you will know where to start digging if the fire hydrant becomes totally covered by snow.
On Thursday, January 10, at approximately 8:02 a.m., units were dispatched for a reported house fire in the 8100 block of Viola Street in the Springfield area of Fairfax County.
Units arrived on scene to find smoke showing from the rear of a two-story, single family house. Crews located and extinguished a fire in the basement. There were no reported civilian or firefighter injuries.
Two occupants were home at the time of the fire. The fire was discovered when smoke alarms sounded and the occupants observed smoke from the basement stairs. Both evacuated and called 9-1-1.
Fire Investigators determined that the fire was accidental in nature and started in a wastepaper basket in the basement. The cause of fire was improperly discarded smoking materials.
Two occupants and two service canines were displaced because of the fire. Red Cross assistance was offered and declined. Damages as a result of the fire were approximately $25,000. This was the second fire this week caused by improperly discarded smoking materials.
Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department urges all residents who smoke to “Sink It or Soak It!” and prevent careless fires! Please keep in mind the below safety tips as it relates to the proper disposal of smoking materials:
- Never dispose of cigarette butts in potted planting soil. The soil, when it gets too dry, can become highly flammable.
- Never flick cigarettes into mulch or shrubbery. Dispose of them in a suitable ashtray or bucket with sand. Ensure designated outside smoking areas have an appropriate fireproof container, ashtray or bucket.
- Completely douse butts and ashes with water before throwing them away, as they can smolder and cause a fire.
- Never smoke in bed.
- Provide large, deep ashtrays with a center support for smokers. Check furniture for any dropped ashes before going to bed. Empty ashes into a fireproof container with water and sand.
- Keep smoking materials away from anything that can burn (i.e., mattresses, bedding, upholstered furniture, draperies, etc.).
- Never smoke in a home where oxygen is being used.
- If you smoke, choose fire-safe cigarettes. They are less likely to cause fires.
- To prevent a deadly cigarette fire, you must be alert. You won’t be if you are sleepy, have been drinking, or have taken medicine or other drugs.
- Keep matches and lighters up high, out of children’s sight and reach.
On January 2, at approximately 12:33 a.m., units responded to a reported house fire in the 2600 block of Meadow Hall Drive in the Herndon section of Fairfax County. The fire was out upon fire department arrival.
Fire Investigators determined that the fire started in the basement and was accidental in nature. The fire was caused when the battery of the hoverboard was overcharged due to the use of an aftermarket (third party replacement) charging adapter. Damages as a result of the fire were approximately $1,000.
Captain Tim Palmer highlights the issue and provides steps hoverboard owners can take to prevent this from happening.
The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) Program educates residents about disaster preparedness for hazards that may impact their area. CERT trains county residents in basic disaster response skills, such as fire safety, light search and rescue, team organization, and disaster medical operations. Using the training learned in the classroom and during exercises, CERT members can assist others in their neighborhood or workplace following an event when professional responders are not immediately available to help. CERT members also are encouraged to support emergency response agencies by taking a more active role in emergency preparedness projects in their community.
The CERT training classes below follows the FEMA curriculum, tailored to local disasters and hazards. Educates people about disaster preparedness for hazards that may impact their area and trains them in basic disaster response skills, such as fire safety, light search and rescue, team organization, and disaster medical operations. Emphasis on hands-on skill development and Fairfax County protocols and procedures. Instructor will provide syllabus with class schedule at first session. This training does not require any special physical strength or agility.
For more information and to register for the next class at the Fire and Rescue Academy, please click on the link below:
CERT 144 at the Fire and Rescue Academy, Monday and Wednesday – Feb 25, 27, March 4, 6,11,13,18, 20