PICATINNY ARSENAL, N.J. - Teammates, you may recall that just before the Fourth of July holiday weekend, I shared with you my thoughts on safety and guarding against the unfortunate possibility of injury or death. We all know that accidents happen everyday, and that sometimes we are victims without any warning.

I am very happy to report that the active Army experienced no fatalities from off-duty accidents during this Fourth of July weekend. This is truly amazing considering this is the first year since the Army began keeping such records that no fatalities have been recorded. I strongly believe that a part of the reason for such success this past year is due to consistent repetition by leaders and others to focus on safety, safety training and awareness. At the same time, however, it saddens me that it is even necessary to report such a statistic.

Within an instant, our lives and the lives of our loved ones can change because of someone's carelessness, mistakes or bad judgment. Life can certainly change in the blink of an eye, especially during these 101 days of summer. We are just over half way through the year and summer will soon end. Let's finish 2008 by keeping safety first and foremost in all our thoughts. I ask that we all stay vigilant and think of SAFETY in all we do - work or play!

I want to thank all of you for your superb work and continual focus on safety! Our warriors depend on every member of Team Picatinny to help keep them safe and ensure they can effectively and efficiently complete their missions and come home to their families and friends!

My deepest appreciation for all that you do for all our warfighters. HOOAH!