Air Force officials urge safe July 4th weekend Published June 23, 2011 By Masao Doi Air Force Safety Center KIRTLAND AIR FORCE BASE, N.M. (AFNS) -- With summer in full swing and the July 4th weekend approaching, officials at the Air Force Safety Center want to remind Airmen of steps they can take to minimize the potential for mishaps. Maj. Gen. Greg Feest, Air Force chief of safety, said although there are many activities to enjoy during the three-day weekend, each activity has its risks. "I can't think of a better time to enjoy the great outdoors with family and friends than the Fourth of July weekend," General Feest said. "As you celebrate our nation's birthday, I ask each of you to have a plan to reduce the risks and be a great wingman," he said. "Applying common sense and simple risk management is a great way to help prevent injury and mishaps," said Bill Parsons, the chief of the Ground Safety Division. Mr. Parsons listed other things to keep in mind this Fourth of July: -- When barbecuing, never leave a grill unattended, keep lighter fluids and flames out of the reach of children and don't start your fire indoors. -- Fireworks, in particular, can be dangerous. Observe local laws, watch for fire hazards and don't allow your children to light fireworks unsupervised. Even better, have them observe from afar. -- When camping, cool all lanterns, stoves and heaters before refueling and never light them inside your tent. -- When riding your motorcycle, check it over carefully, wear personal protective equipment and ride within your skill level. -- When driving, wear your seat belt, allow for plenty of time for your trip and don't drink and drive "Celebrate, have fun and show your appreciation for the independence of our great country," Mr. Parsons said. "Don't let reckless behavior turn it into a time of regret."