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Senior Pentagon Official Urges Holiday Safety Awareness

By Amaani Lyle
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Nov. 26, 2013 – A senior Pentagon official is urging military members to avoid the kinds of risky behavior that can spike during the holiday season.

Army Lt. Gen. Michael S. Linnington, military deputy to the undersecretary of defense for personnel and readiness, cautioned against historically fatal factors such as distracted driving, or driving while fatigued or under the influence.

“The holidays are a special time for military members and their families to release, rejoice and recharge,” Linnington said. “They serve here and around the world, making a difference, which is all the more reason their safety and well-being is so critical.”

With off-duty time, leisure and travel inherently bring risk, the general said, particularly through vehicular mishaps from Thanksgiving through New Year’s Day. He encouraged proper planning to mitigate those risks, often exacerbated by weather.

“Basically we’re using the same principles of risk management that we use in combat to help reduce holiday accidents,” Linnington said. “Have a plan, execute the plan, and know your subordinates’ plans -– leadership is important.”

The Travel Risk Planning System is a DOD-wide tool sponsored by the Defense Safety Oversight Council to assist with long-distance travel planning and risk mitigation, especially to reduce the potential for fatigue-related risks.

(Follow Amaani Lyle on Twitter: @LyleAFPS)


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