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Air Force leaders issue summer safety message

(U.S. Air Force graphic/Corey Parrish)

(U.S. Air Force graphic/Corey Parrish)

WASHINGTON (AFNS) -- Secretary of the Air Force Michael Donley, Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Norton Schwartz and Chief Master Sgt. of the Air Force James A. Roy send the following Critical Days of Summer safety campaign message to the Airmen of the U.S. Air Force and their families:

Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day marks the season of greatest risks for our Air Force team. To counter those risks, we will kick off the Critical Days of Summer safety campaign for 2011 on May 28th.

Unfortunately, last summer we lost 16 Airmen. While this was an improvement over the 21 lost the previous year, we must strive to do better. The 2011 Air Force goal is zero preventable mishaps and fatalities.

The leading causes of preventable fatalities during the Critical Days of Summer are off-duty private motor vehicle mishaps and drowning.

We therefore emphasize the importance of fastening seatbelts, driving at reasonable speeds, and avoiding situations of driving while distracted, under the influence fatigued, or otherwise impaired. While participating in aquatic activities, we also strongly urge the use of proper equipment such as personal flotation devices and avoiding hazardous areas and dangerous water conditions.

We challenge all Airmen to make this year safer than last. Be each other's wingman. Use risk management principles, both on and off duty, and exercise sound judgment. We encourage each of you to invest a high level of commitment in taking care of one another. Our most important objective for this summer's campaign is protecting military and civilian personnel and their families.

Enjoy the summer months ahead, be a good wingman and be safe. Thank you for your service, and all that you do for our Air Force and our nation.

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