KAISERSLAUTERN, Germany -- The U.S. Army Medical Materiel Center-Europe hosted its first “Safety Stand Down Day” at Kaiserslautern Army Depot on June 24. The entire USAMMC-E workforce participated in classes and learned about a variety of topics throughout the day.
Local organizations participating in the effort included the German Red Cross, American Red Cross, Rheinland-Pfalz Garrison Fire Department, Drunk Driving Simulator, LRMC Behavioral Health and the Army Substance Abuse Program.
The event was kicked off by Col. Shane Roach, who recently transitioned out as USAMMC-E commander, and Master Sgt. Charles Douglas, who discussed the importance of safety in the workplace. This was followed by safety office personnel giving a risk assessment to ensure that the employees were aware of safety issues throughout the day.
Safety classes were held at 30-minute intervals throughout the day. Participants received a schedule and map to guide them through the course of the event.
“Employees gathered in groups and even had time to meet with colleagues from other divisions, which was a positive note since many have not seen each other in months due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Jenny Grasser of the safety office.
Employees participated in hands-on activities, such as learning cardio-pulmonary resuscitation, being able to use their skills to put out a fire with a fire extinguisher, and some even got a chance to drive a forklift and demonstrate their expertise.
Other classes provided knowledge required for hazardous materials, including how to use a spill kit, how to understand hazard communication and how to deal with hazardous waste safely. Two more covered safe listing techniques and personal protective equipment, as well as the importance of dealing with hot weather during the work day.
All in all, it was a great day to learn about safety that is both useful at work and practical at home in some cases.
Employees said they enjoyed the event, and that it provided ideas that will be useful in planning the next one, according to Grasser. Comments indicated many employees felt it was a great team building event that should be held more than once a year. Most enjoyed the hands-on training and the combination of the dual language offered with some of the classes.