Notice: This is not an official Civil Air Patrol site and does not have any official approval from Civil Air Patrol. 
As a private citizen, I have posted this information in the hope that it may be useful to to other aerospace educators.

The following briefings were given on the first two days of the 1999 Northeast Region Staff College, held at McGuire AFB, New Jersey. No flying takes place at this activity so the only safety issues are personal safety (avoiding injury) and vehicle safety (for the occasions when the students get in their cars).  They are posted here for use by safety officers at similar events (staff colleges, encampments, national special activities).

Thanks to Maj Bill Bishop of New Jersey who gave me the "throwing caution to the wind" demonstration.


I will be serving as your safety officer this week and will be speaking to you for two minutes each morning. If you don't think I'm serious when I say "two minutes," look at the Commandant: he's checking his watch!  I want to keep my time short anyway, because having taken this course last year I know that you have a lot of excellent material to get to, both from today's presenters and from the staff.


This location is ideal for this activity.  We’ve been holding it here for several years and compared with the other place that this college has been held, this one is truly outstanding.

The continued success of the staff college in this location is dependent on YOU.  They will not have us here is we prove ourselves to be unsafe or accident-prone.  I want to deputize each of you right now as a safety officer. Your duty as deputy safety officer will be to look after your own personal safety and driving safety.  Are there any safety officers here? I said are there any safety officers here?

Good. I cannot be everywhere at all times so I will be counting on each of you to be using your eyes and ears - to make sure your fellow students are using their heads.

Day 1 content 

I'm going to talk to you this week about personal safety and about vehicle safety.  There will be a few people who don't take my cautions to heart, and unfortunately when something happens we will all know exactly who those people are. So please, heed these instructions so you aren't that person.

  1. Personal Safety

    1. Dehydration. You will be doing a lot of activity, including drill, this week. Today’s high is forecast to be __ degrees. That means you will need to drink much more water than you usually do when you are sitting at home or sitting at your desk.

Water will be supplied in your seminar rooms.

You may need to get a bottle of water.  Yes, it costs a dollar, but you can refill it all week. And based on what I’ve heard about polyethylene, you can continue to reuse it for the rest of your life.

    1. Sun exposure.  It is the peak of summer – the solstice was just a couple weeks ago. The sun is the strongest it will be all year.

                                                               i.      Wear sunscreen when you are going to be out in the sun for more than a few minutes.

                                                              ii.      Some medications increase sun sensitivity.

    1. This is not basic training.  You are not new recruits.  The object of basic training is to weed out people whose physical shortcomings might endanger them on a field of battle.  This is CAP – we’re not interested in your physical shortcomings!  We want you to be safe. 

As I said, you are not new recruits, you are officers.  You are older and wiser than new recruits. Therefore, if you need to step out of formation, please do. Step out and sit down. You will not receive any demerits for physical fitness or endurance.  Don’t lock your knees in formation.

Day 2 Content

    1. If you have personal health concerns, see your seminar advisor.  They will be around you for many hours during the week, and if you have asthma, or epilepsy, or any other condition which has the potential to give them a real scare, it would be nice of you to let them know today, not after you wake up.

    2. There are holes in the grass here. Don’t walk on the grass, with the exception of our parade ground. It’s not only bad form when you’re in uniform – you might step in a hole.

    3. Pace yourself. Sleep deprivation is insidious. When we have a case of someone who walked into a wall, or tripped and fell on a crack in the sidewalk, or drove their car through a stop sign, sleep deprivation is often a contributing factor.  You are going to have real challenges this week and you’ll deal with them much more successfully if you got enough rest the night before.
      Besides, do you really want the embarrassment of being the person who oversleeps and misses morning formation? It’s the best way to ask for demerits and it’s not an easy reputation to get rid of.
      Falling asleep in class is another good way to garner some demerits for your team.  The instructors at this school, both Air Force and CAP, are volunteering their time and don’t deserve the insult of watching you nod off. PACE YOURSELF.

Day 3 Content

2.    Fire Safety

We may have a fire drill this week.

Know the location of the fire extinguishers on your hall.

Know the location of the exit nearest your room, and the second-nearest.

Locate the emergency telephone numbers – they are in the desk drawer in your room.

Review personal safety: water, sunscreen, sleep.

Day 4 content

3.    Driving Safety

Seat belts are mandatory on base. (They are hugely effective everywhere. I am one of several people in this room who wouldn’t be here talking to you now if it wasn’t for a seat belt.

Speed limits are 20 and 30 mph on base!  This is very slow and easy to break.

I saw a ticket being given yesterday on __ road.

On the way from here to Fort Dix, there is a 40mph zone along the west end of the runway – followed immediately by a 20 zone, which is often equipped with an SP and a radar gun.

Rainy day content

Stay inside if there is lightning.