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Gordon Graham on PPE for first responders

In this video, risk management expert Gordon Graham emphasizes the importance of first responders wearing properly-fitting PPE

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Gordon Graham here with Today’s Tip from Lexipol. No matter what public safety service you perform, Today’s Tip is critical to keeping you safe.

One thing we learned during the pandemic is the danger of airborne contagions. And we were reminded about the importance of using personal protective equipment, or PPE, to keep us safe. Public safety professionals have long used hand sanitizer and surgical masks. But they became scarce during the pandemic because others realized their effectiveness in reducing risks posed by disease.

Even though the worst of COVID-19 appears to be behind us, these reminders still hold true for your daily work routine. Whether you’re in law enforcement, custody, fire, or EMS, you likely encounter potentially dangerous pathogens nearly every day. It’s in our nature to help people. When we see someone who’s injured, it’s natural for us to spring into action to help. But don’t forget about using your PPE.

That means gloving up before touching or treating an injured person. Using a face shield or resuscitator bag or mask for CPR. And don’t forget about wearing stick-proof gloves when searching any place you cannot see.

Most importantly, if you even think you’ve been exposed, report it! This may mean more paperwork at the end of your shift. It may even mean a trip to the doctor’s office or clinic for additional testing. But it’s crucial for your long-term protection to document what happened.

Remember, it only takes a second to don your PPE. Protecting our great public, yourself, your coworkers, and your family is important. Don’t cut corners and don’t take anything for granted. Your life or the lives of others may depend on it.

And that’s Today’s Tip from Lexipol. Gordon Graham, signing off.

Gordon Graham has been actively involved in law enforcement since 1973. He spent nearly 10 years as a very active motorcycle officer while also attending Cal State Long Beach to achieve his teaching credential, USC to do his graduate work in Safety and Systems Management with an emphasis on Risk Management, and Western State University to obtain his law degree. In 1982 he was promoted to sergeant and also admitted to the California State Bar and immediately opened his law offices in Los Angeles.