Friday, January 30, 2009

Many Faces of ICE !

ICE4SAFETY has come up with another 15 variations of the ICE Logo for groups and educators to use that could represent various themes when instructing others about preparedness.
Since it is Winter we decided to feature a snow/fog accented ICE Logo as well.....
We also thought that the Sculptured Look of ICE (so would this be an ICE Sculpture?) would go well at some Winter events like ICE Fishing Contests......or Winterfests!
Promoting ICE certainly doesn't have to be certainly isn't dull here that's for sure!
See the Many Faces of ICE HERE!

News 10 Now & Oneida NY Discover ICE

Folks in Oneida County, New York should now look forward to their local Ambulance Corp to promote the use of ICE in their community.

News folks should be a bit more cognizant of the latest practices about ICE and should avoid outdated information from Wikipedia, circa 2005.
Don't program your phones using ICEMOM, ICEDAD, ICEHUSBAND - instead use the E.123 Method we detail on the blog and website.


You might want to contact your local EMS Provider and see when they are going to sponsor an ICE giveaway or fundraiser for your community. SASE availability for free ICE materials is still in effect!

Any legitimate organization/company now wishing to sponsor the giveaway of the Large ICE Stickers can drop us a line. is sponsoring the standard ICE Sticker giveaway now. Thanks.

MRE Recall Notice - Take Note 1-30-09

Recall -- Firm Press Release

FDA posts press releases and other notices of recalls and market withdrawals from the firms involved as a service to consumers, the media, and other interested parties. FDA does not endorse either the product or the company.

SOPAKCO, Inc. Announces a Nationwide Recall of Certain SURE-PAK 12 Meals Containing Peanut Butter Products

Contact:SOPAKCO, Inc.423-278-1437

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE -- Mullins, SC (January 27, 2009) -- SOPAKCO, Inc., of Mullins, South Carolina, is voluntarily recalling certain Sure-Pak 12 Meals because peanut butter packages in the Meals may have the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella.

Salmonella is an organism that can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems. Healthy persons infected with Salmonella often experience fever, diarrhea (which may be bloody), nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain. In rare circumstances, infection with Salmonella can result in the organism getting into the bloodstream and producing more severe illnesses such as arterial infections (i.e., infected aneurysms), endocarditis and arthritis.

This recall follows the announcement of recent recalls by Peanut Corporation of America (PCA) and Boca Grande Foods Inc. indicating peanut products from PCA have the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella. Boca Grande Foods manufactured peanut butter with peanut paste from PCA, and supplied sealed peanut butter packages to SOPAKCO. The Sure-Pak 12 Meals with the lot numbers listed below contain 1 oz. or 2 oz. packages of peanut butter recalled by Boca Grande Foods.

The recalled Sure-Pak 12 Meals were sold by SOPAKCO to distributors and costomers nationwide and several foreign countries. Some of the Sure-Pak 12 Meals were sold at stores specializing in emergency preparedness and camping gear and rations.

SOPAKCO is not aware of any reported illnesses involving Sure-Pak 12 Meals. However, as a precautionary measure, SOPAKCO is recalling Sure-Pak 12 Meals with the following lot numbers (located on the cases of product):

- 8261
- 8278
- 8285
- 8287
- 8294
- 8320
- 8322
- 8330
- 8350
- 8357
- 8358
- 9003
- 9012
Customers are asked to take all Sure-Pak 12 Meals manufactured with the lot numbers listed above out of distribution immediately.

This recall does not affect any other products or lot numbers made by SOPAKCO. Other lots of Sure-Pak 12 Meals may contain peanut butter packages, including 1.12 oz. packages from Boca Grande Foods; however, peanut butter packages in those Sure-Pak 12 Meals were obtained from sources which have not been linked to any Salmonella contamination.

Customers who received any products affected by this recall will be contacted directly by a SOPAKCO customer service representative.

Customers with questions or concerns about the recall may contact SOPAKCO at 423-278-1437 for further information on what to do with the product.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Prep Tip - Using Road Flares

The decision to use road flares (fusees) to set up an emergency perimeter around your disabled or crashed vehicle requires some careful considerations. Your safety and that of others in the immediate vicinity and those that come across your scene either by vehicle or on foot is paramount. Most people are unprepared for even minor emergencies on the road.

The use of these devices are meant to improve upon the safety of the situation - not place you in more harm. If you understand their use and feel confident in your ability to use them they can afford you some protection when experiencing a vehicle emergency. They also can make excellent fire starters if you get stuck and need a fire! 30 minute flares are best.

ICE4SAFETY previously discussed using electronic strobes as an alternative to flammable road flares and there is no reason you could not have or utilize both. If you have an aversion to flames, smoke or fire - or a medical condition that precludes you from using them, then by all means consider the electronic strobes. If others use your vehicle or you never travel alone and your partner or the proverbial good Samaritan that stops to assist is competent using flares....then get some. Remember flares are essentially molten burning metal. Read directions.

Roadways have curves, dips, ravines and hills that obstruct and limit the sight distance of drivers - both oncoming and from behind. Other drivers can be distracted while driving which can place you at even greater risk as you navigate your emergency scene or go to set up and use flares. Don't forget to use your vehicle emergency flashers as well. Having a DOT Class 2 reflective yellow vest in your car is an excellent idea.

- Flares can ignite leaking volatile liquid or gaseous fuel from vehicles - 100ft away is the rule.
- Proper care to ignite the flares require minimum of leather (or nomex) gloves and goggles
- Flares when lit will spit and sputter molten material and burn clothing easily.
- If you decide to assist another motorist during an emergency (very dangerous), park in front
of their disabled vehicle which might afford you some additional protection.
- Do not handle food after using flares without proper wash up - flare materials are toxic!
- Flares might be difficult to extinguish and care must be taken not to ignite other items.
- The bright light emitted by the flares can cause other-driver fixation and disorientation.
- Light from fusees is recognized quicker and is superior in both slowing traffic and detection.
- Additional flares can be ignited and deployed over time by using burning flares in position.
- Chemical Flares may be difficult or impossible to deploy if you are injured.

Flare Placement:
Flares should be positioned in a tapered pattern to direct vehicles away from behind your vehicle. Using flares on the opposite side of the roadway at the scene of a crash can help delineate the accident scene. Inclement weather (usually the accident cause) can hamper the speed of your deployment.

To determine the placement of the first flare (furthest from vehicle) use the posted speed limit - convert that to feet then multiply by a factor of 4 - (30 = 30 x 4 or 120 ft)

If the speed limit is over 50 mph, then multiply that speed by 4 and add 100 to get the distance ( 60mph = (60x4) +100 =340ft). On a curve add the distance from the bottom of the curve to the top of the curve and add to the distance calculated. A chart might help:

30 mph ----- 30 ft ----- 120 ft
40 mph ----- 40 ft----- 160 ft
55 mph ----- 55 ft ----- 220 + 100 = 320 ft
65 mph ----- 65 ft ----- 260 + 100 = 360 ft
(f/Fundamentals of Emergency Care - Beebe/Funk 2001)

If you are off the road on the shoulder out of traffic that is ideal although not perfectly safe as accident statistics and prior experience has shown us - but better than in the high speed traffic lane. Placing yourself in high speed traffic without any professional assistance in an effort to manage traffic can get you seriously injured or worse.

For a more detailed look at the various chemical and electric road safety signal devices we have a report to the DOJ 6-12-08 linked below written by the Florida Gulf Coast University Research Institute. You can make informed choices based on the report findings.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Preparedness Tip - Prescription Eyewear

When speaking with Optician Robert Hoffman at Empire Vision in Dewitt recently, we were reminded about having a spare pair of glasses....thanks Bob.

When preparing your emergency evacuation kit make sure you include a pair of glasses that will hold up in a variety of conditions. Also make sure you include the prescription information you get from your most recent eye exam on your Emergency Medical Information Form ( and Critical Information Document as backup data that can be placed on a Portable USB Drive. You might even note that on your ICE Medical Card as well.

Since we advocate redundancy in preparation - back that up by writing the prescription on the hard case your store the glasses in with silver metallic or black Sharpie marker along with your name. If you rely on "cheaters" from the drugstore then make sure you note the magnification factor on the case to avoid confusion later on.

If you can afford new glasses or your insurance coverage allows you to offset the purchase with insurance, then having a dedicated pair of glasses is an excellent idea. As we all know, looking for what we need or THINK we need when evacuating is a practice fraught with failure in most cases.

Spare eyeglasses can be as ugly as the military combat glasses (aka birth control glasses) or trendy transitional lens designer models. Remember that you won't need to be styling much in an emergency but you will need dependable (durable) and effective vision wear - if you don't need any vision assistance...that's one less hassle.

All of us will however need protection from UV light whether or not you require vision assistance. Spending time outside in bright sunlight can cause you to lose your effective vision in very short order (sun blindness).

If you are really economizing here or need something inconspicuous in a small emergency kit, there are paper thin sunglasses you can get from your optician (like 3D movie glasses) or online from Brigade or Nitro-Pak. You will be severely hampered in your self help survival efforts if you suddenly become blind.

Glasses having a transitional lens (vs. bifocal), photochromic UV protection (vs. separate sunglasses or clip ons), polycarbonate (vs. glass), ANSI Z87 or Military High Velocity Impact Resistance (vs no impact resistance) lenses may be your best all around bet. A pair of eyeglass retainers are in order if you are on the move - also make sure you can wear ski or protective goggles over the glasses.

Prep Tip:
Dedicating as little as 10 minutes every day to complete at least one act of preparation will result in your spending 5 hours of effort toward your preparedness goals in one month.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Snowmobile Safety - Using ICE

It is definitely that time of year again and for those of you lucky enough to have snow like Oswego County and the Tug Hill Regions of New York - ICE can play a roll in improving your odds of getting the correct medical treatment in that critical "Golden Hour" of intervention.

Just so you would know how the new ICE stickers would look on your "sled" we had Ed Coombs, a professional NASCAR photographer take some representative photos of a fully decked out snowmobile and rider to demonstrate the various locations where ICE can be used on the machine. Notice (hard not to) the helmet is clearly marked with a large ICE Sticker and can be seen for a considerable distance.

ICE Cards are carried by the rider, his cell phone has emergency contacts programmed in using the international E.123 Standard, an Emergency Medical Info Form is carried and marked with an ICE sticker as well. A completed ICE Card can also be attached to the inside surfaces of the snowmobile to provide instant access to the information. If you would like to keep the card out of plain sight for when you park outside the gathering spot - try the storage compartment or an alternate document holder on board.

Ed says because the plastic cowlings are so slick on the new machines you might want to place the stickers on some equally visible surfaces that weren't designed to resist stickers. As you can see, this did not present any problem.

Now, see what kind of looks you get from the Sheriff's Patrol when you stop at the inspection checkpoint! ICE - we deliver! Thanks Ed!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Preparedness Tip - Canned Food Storage

A useful tip from CampingSurvival.Com and ICE4SAFETY.
Canned food labels have tendency to peel off over time, especially if they are kept for years in your basement.
In order to prevent this, put a coat of shellac over the label as soon as you get them. This way, you will always know what's in the can years later.
Also, use permanent marker to identify the can contents in case you have a (clean) water leak that washes the labels off your normally stored food (also used in an emergency).
You could use the code "P" to denote purchase date for food rotation purposes
[such a P 1-14-09].
You can use the code "X" for the manufacturer expiration date [such as X 5-10-12]
Simple - easy to understand and easy to see if you lose your glasses.
ICE4SAFETY has stressed labeling tips to help you recognize equipment and items that in an emergency may be overlooked or that because of your heightened state of anxiety may fail to recognize. In any event you may not be able to see the expiration dates on small cans of food because the print is so small.
If you or your organization has a unique and helpful safety tip such as this, you are welcome to submit them to ICE4SAFETY and we will post them with you. We will also make a Tool Box Safety Discussion for others to use as well.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

ICE CUBE Training Aid

That is indeed an "ICE CUBE" and one that can be constructed easily and used for training and awareness purposes as well as promote uses for ICE. Maybe some insurance carrier or workers comp TPA or health insurer will make up a bunch of these for stress blocks or something useful for office workers.

We will place this file online as well and include it in an instructional tool kit to make it easier for all of you instructors and scout leaders etc.. ICE4SAFETY will develop a large display oriented ICE Cube to be used in convention like settings for sponsoring organizations to use. A floating ICE Cube should get some attention....."service after the sale" - we keep devloping ways for you to use and promote the spread of the ICE concept.

You'll be seeing these more going forward.....whatever helps spread the word.

2009 ICE Calendars

Want to show off your groups involvement in using ICE?

ICE4SAFETY can make your group or business a custom calendar to show a specific set of scenes (like the "Adopt a Hydrant" Program) or events related to promoting ICE and send it electronically to you.

One simple example is show here....plenty more. We will place a few online at the website for you to use. You can make these up in your color laser of inkjet printer and give them away. Very Cool!

ICE at South Florida Fair 1-15 to 2-1

For the second consecutive year, ICE will be at the South Florida Fair and promoted by the Palm Beach County Sheriff's Department and Fire Rescue!

PBSO and PBFR have been successfully promoting the use of ICE for the delivery of emergency medical services in the many communities they serve since last January 2008!

Click on Logo to Visit the Fair Online!

ICE Vehicle Safety System & Snowmobiles

While we are on the topic of winter sports, here is a perfect use for ICE.

Snowmobiles work in remote areas often outside the range of cell phones or radios...mostly in underpopulated areas of some of the snowbound states.

County Sheriff's and State Police with sled patrols have a perfect opportunity to spread the use of this preparedness tool during their operator safety training sessions and trail interventions (aka "roadblocks").

A few hours on a trail and some distance by foot from civilization in below zero weather takes some advance preparation. When accidents or mechanical failure or medical issues come up it certainly is wise to have more than plan "B". Add too much alcohol and some drivers may become your worst nightmare on the snow.

Place an ICE Sticker on your sled, complete the ICE Cards, program your cell phones, attach a small ICE Sticker to them as well and complete a medical information form online to carry with you always! Simple. Never travel without a basic survival kit, tools and 1st aid kit.

Hey, we'll let the Sheriff's tell you about the rest for right now...

Snowmobile groups? By now you should have figured this out already....have fun and be safe!

Link to the New York State Snowmobile Association - NYSSA.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Winter Fire Safety Posters - Adopt a Hydrant

After we had assembled a group of winter fire safety posters we came upon the idea of adopting a hydrant as a theme....seems it was not an original idea - but one we liked nonetheless!

We found two Adopt A Hydrant programs online - Fairfax, Virginia and Southfield, Michigan and we salute your cities for doing this.
ICE4SAFETY would like everyone with snow to venture out to their nearest Fire Hydrant and Shovel or Snowblow the little fellas out. It may be double digits below zero with wind chill when you shovel, but imagine the firefighter who may have just been roused from his warm home to fight your fire in that temperature come 0300Hrs.

You can find the new posters on the ICE website in a zipped file. Want to design some for others to use? Have some neat pics we can use? Use your email and send them along. Full credit given.

Slide show is temporarily down - please visit the ICE4SAFETY website to download the fire safety posters.


Friday, January 9, 2009

ICE Displays for Medical Offices

Another convenient way for ICE to be displayed and given out at medical facilities, ski resorts, office lobby areas, waiting rooms, dentist offices and the list goes on. Eye catching and appealing , the display fits right in and can carry the name/logo of the organization that is sponsoring the giveaway - the cards can bear the same promotional information as well. These pics are from a participating physicians office.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Drug Vial Program Considerations

Fact: Vial Safety Programs are Essentially Target Marketing of Persons Who Take Prescription Medications.

They persist because they help promote drug sales by drug stores and have done so since the early 1970's. Naturally, the drug vial is the medium of choice for use by this type of merchant.

Some of the regional drug chains may actually now be venturing into creating an auto vial that expands the use of the concept to the automobile.

The problem now is recognizing the myriad of competing symbols and marketing information to promote the various regional programs.

Here are three (3) simple benchmark questions for checking out the Vial Program you are evaluating to see if it is marketing or public service:

#1 Is the Drug Chain Logo the same size or larger than the symbol being used to denote the purpose of the device?
If Same or Larger - It is Advertising.

The main purpose should be to identify the emergency vial - not advertise the drug chain. Now ask yourself - do I or my police/fire/ems organization want to serve as a pimp for a store chain?

#2 Are the people creating this program advertisers or safety professionals with experience? Are they using your agency to get street cred? Can your agency help the distribution of these vials through other merchants or outlets in your area? What about other drug chains - since not everyone uses just one of the say 8-10 major chains in most cities and suburbs? Not likely if the design involves advertising for another chain!

#3 What is the "service after the sale" - in other words what kinds of programs, tools or control over how your(?) program rolls out. You get billboards, some radio and people to visit the store.

Having most of the device consist of advertising compromises the effectiveness of the idea and the ability of responders - especially those from outside your district, to recognize the symbol - which is the whole purpose. You might eventually see one small line of text on the ICE Sticker to identify the source (ICE4SAFETY) or the agency using the system. We don't need to advertise because we aren't planning to spend $500K on a marketing campaign.

Still considering placing that advertisement on your ski helmet, bicycle, car, or snowmobile? We have conditioned ourselves to advertise the likes of Nike and North Face on our shirts and jackets, so maybe that is what you have come to expect......but this about safety - right?

How about if your fire/police/city/non profit were to have their name on stickers and posters and brochures that promoted a safety program? Would that make more sense? Will the program sponsor allow you to place your name on program materials or just be a supporter endorsing their product?

Also you may want to consider how you might improve the distribution of the Vial Materials through other outlets - if advertising conflicts are a problem then you are hampered in your overall effectiveness.

Most charities will have an event and feature multiple sponsors on a brochure, banner or poster - some undoubtedly will be competitors. Consider how this might affect your rolling out your Vial Program if you are counting on multiple community sponsors using a proprietary advertising based program.

Depending on the type of design offered, you by all means would NOT want to display a picture of a drug vial on your car, your home or apartment door for all the local robbers and burglars to see given the widespread problem with prescription drug misuse.

Let's face it, most people are unwilling to take (much) time when it comes to making sure they are equipped to survive. Look around - people wearing flip flops or bedroom pajamas and slippers out in public malls or when this stylish or simply clueless? So it comes as no surprise really that many people will follow the path of least resistance - even with their own safety...and often with the same predictable result.

So, if you are a large drug chain and want to gain a competitive marketing advantage over other chains in this area - simply don't spend $500K -$1M in advertising start up to establish (not maintain) a new image - just use ICE.

Some advantages to using ICE to improve vial program effectiveness:

  • It is more flexible and has many more uses than representing one system or method
  • Superior recognition by design and through widespread use
  • The design (ICE) is not going to change like Vial Programs - then what do you do????
  • Not limited in the use of the image for one emergency purpose
  • Encompasses all disciplines of emergency action planning, safety and preparedness
  • Not limited to representing first aid kits or Drug Vials
  • Has applications for the home/auto/work/your person / recreational equipment etc...
  • Image can be uploaded to cell phones or other electronics for increased program efficacy
  • Doesn't suggest drug use or disability
  • Co-Branding of promotional materials (like large stickers) already developed - saves money and resources not to mention makes perfect sense for business
  • Designed by safety professionals with field experience not marketers
  • You have control over expanding your program to home/auto/person/boat/workplace
  • Not limited to the geographical region where the drug chain only promotes the program
  • Can be supported online at ICE4SAFETY where it is viewed by thousands of people in over 70 countries!
  • ICE is not language dependent using E.123
  • ICE is designed to be a public service and has been for almost 4 years.
  • Less (if any) chance of conflict with design use by business sponsors to support program.

Bottom line - using ICE for HOME/AUTO/TRAVEL/WORK is still the simplest and most cost effective solution for preparedness and one that continues to find new uses. If your organization wants to be an extension of the marketing department of any retail chain, then hopefully you brainstorm out all the details.

Applications using RFID and 2D Barcode are also available.

This may have been a tough love article for some whose hearts are in the right place - if it helps you make a more informed decision that ultimately better serves the community, then that is a good thing.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

ICE Card Posters for Stand Alone Displays

Just when you thought it couldn't get any we have taken the guess work out of how to get the ICE Cards on display in places where people can see them.

Using a plastic poster and card display found at office supply stores ($11) we made up posters that allow you to place your organization's name/logo on them and place them on counter tops and point of sale areas for people to learn about ICE and acquire the cards easily.

We have made up posters for the basic contact cards, medical info cards, international cards, health care proxy cards and for whatever card you feel like displaying.....the display units have clear plastic card holders built right into the lower right corner of the units making it easy for people to see and take a card. The cards themselves make up the display in that corner of the, huh?

We are getting them out there to police departments, doctor offices and a host of other places....

Let us know what you want on your poster and we will send you the file (free of course) in MS Word or PDF and you can print your own. We will place them online soon.....

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Large Multi-Use ICE Stickers Available Online

You asked for them, so now we have them online for you to purchase. It is a lot easier than making your own. We waited three years but it was inevitable that in order to get the job done we also had to DIY.

UV and Weather Resistant 2" x 2" Stickers can be located and obtained at

Snow and ice is not included.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

ICE Medical Cards Available - January 2009

The ICE Medical Info Cards are now available in quantities online at as promised in response to your requests.

The cards actually have only one line for allergies to accommodate the printing on the top two lines...still plenty of room.

OK, at this point people have more than a few options: Basic and Medical Cards, Small and Large Outdoor Stickers, Card Holders, Posters, Medical Info Forms, Brochures, Tool Box Talks, Roll Call Training, Videos, PowerPoint, Multi-Lingual Cards, RFID Solutions....and the list grows.....seems to be working for a number of you out there so we will keep it up. Thanks for the continued support.

Ski Safety Ideas - Winter 2008/2009

Since we are on the topic of ski safety and using ICE for winter recreation, here are some ideas for you on simple safety poster creation and actual use of and ICE Sticker on a ski helmet.

These pics were taken at Labrador Mountain in Truxton, NY [] recently where the ski patrol was conducting training.

This poster took just a few minutes to make and if rotated with some other posters around the lodge, might get some attention and reinforce the "be nice" signs you'll see on the ski lift towers.

Face it, you can be nice as they come and still get whacked pretty bad by some totally irresponsible (or novice)person on the slopes who is not.

Time during an emergency is important - sometimes communications in remote ski areas is less than ideal - cell phones won't work, radio system interoperability is not established or staffing shortages causes a delay. Family plans often do not include what to do in an emergency - just when to meet for lunch.

For the five or ten minutes it takes to complete an ICE Card, place an ICE Sticker on your helmet (or skis) and fill out a Medical Info Form you can improve your odds of survival markedly. No program where you are? No problem - SASE to ICE4SAFETY gets you the ICE Materials FREE.

Parents? Are your children participating in a school ski program after school? Is your school safety plan as comprehensive as you'd like it to be. If not, then it might be time to speak up.

We are full time safety professionals that review and recommend safety programs all day long for a living. BS is simply one thing that won't pass muster in an emergency. Nice part about ICE - when ski season is over, you can use it for rollerblading and kayaking next summer.....

Take control of your own safety and don't take it for granted or entrust it to people who don't place that as upmost in their business plan. Ask yourself what level of safety preparedness are you willing to settle for? (Answer: The Best of Course!)

Let your ski mountain know about ICE and that you are using it. The Local and National Ski Patrol is a truly dedicated group of people - some of the best in fact...we know first hand about that! So, help them out will ya please! Snowmobilers and Ice Fishing is next.....

Ski Helmet Equipped with ICE Sticker