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    • 7 Tips for Keeping Your Yard Green Without Doubling the Water Bill

      We've discussed climate change and drought - What can you do?

      LawnEven if you are an avid Gardener, proud of your lush lawn, you can use less water and help out... Green grass lovers unite! Here are seven ways to keep those yards lush without a hefty water bill.

      As we are spending more time outside and curb appeal season is ramping up, let's talk about these seven tips for keeping your yard green without doubling the water bill.

      1. Determine whether the type of grass in your yard is the best variety for your climate. There are dozens of unique classifications of turf grass, and all varieties respond differently to their environment. A few basic examples are cold- or heat-tolerant, saltwater-tolerant, grasses that stand up to wear and tear. Start by asking a lawn expert what you have (be prepared to discover there are several kinds) and which is the easiest to keep green.

      Landscaper First Aid Kit2. Mow it at a higher setting. The blades on grasses act like satellite dishes for the roots. They attract sunlight, convert the energy into food and feed the roots. Raising the height on your lawnmower will prevent damage to the crown (just below the green part) and give the grass a bigger receptor to the sun's energy.

      3. Pick the best time to water. On hot summer afternoons, water evaporates quickly, so it will take more water to saturate your lawn then than at other times during the day. On average, 5:00 a.m. is the best time to run the sprinklers or hose.

      4. Go with a rainwater collection system. Rainwater collectors don't have to be fancy — some are in the shape of barrels — but they do help cut back on the water bill while keeping your yard healthy. But if you want to go fancy, there is a company that makes a system that doubles as a fence.

      mower-15. Prevent disease by applying the appropriate chemicals. Grass blades are susceptible to disease, like any other living organism. If you notice brown spots in a somewhat regular pattern in your yard or mushrooms in a circle, that could be a symptom of a fungus. The fungus could spread and possibly destroy parts of your lawn. An expert can advise you on what is appropriate for your variety and environment.

      6. Fertilize it. Healthy yards stay green longer, are less prone to contamination and recover from foot traffic better than their counterparts. Feeding your grass is one way to keep it healthy. Going back to number 1 on this list, determine what you have in your yard and buy the appropriate fuel for it. You'll see the blades grow faster and thicker when properly nourished.

      7. Overseed it in the fall or winter. This strategy applies mostly to folks who live in mild or warmer climates, but cold-weather lawn-lovers can overseed as well. Overseeding means just that — seeding over an existing yard. You'll have a green yard in the winter, but those seedlings will also help insulate your existing grass.

      Soon your lawn will be the envy of the neighborhood!

    • NEW 2015 ANSI Standards – What to expect, know, and meet

      On June 17th, 2016, the ANSI standards concerning first aid kits changed. As these new guidelines were developed a year prior, they are referred to as the 2015 standards, but did not go into effect until mid-2016. Should you be required to meet OSHA regulations, you too were affected by this change as OSHA refers to the ANSI guidelines within their standards. With that said, the kit mounted to your wall is more than likely out of date. While these standards may have changed, your obligation to adhere to them did not and as such, it is highly suggested to familiarize yourself with the current regulations and do what is needed to remain in compliance with them. In short, the changes in standards were in regard to the degree of injuries that may be sustained, kit label and features, and particular minimum content within.

      1715To start, ANSI created two grades of kits – Class A and B – with respect to the extent of injuries that may occur in the workplace. Class A was developed to furnish environments that would only be subject to basic and common injuries, and includes 22 more pieces than that of the previous 2009 standards. This classification would be suitable for office buildings, call centers, school classrooms, and the like. Contrarily, Class B was designed to outfit workplaces that are susceptible to more severe and serious injuries, and consists of 145 more pieces than the former standards including a splint and tourniquet. This classification would be applicable for construction sites, industrial facilities, restaurants, and the like. You may also find kits described as “A+” or “B+”, which simply means that more than the minimum fill of the said class is included.

      In addition to the two introduced categories, ANSI also set forth requirements concerning the kit’s label and its physical features. In prior standards, label requirements were addressed but the specifications for such are now in greater detail. The former and present guidelines both mandate that the kit and/or location be clearly marked as a place of first aid supplies and for the text on the label to be written in no smaller than six (6) point font. However, the current standard also requires that the label be legible and permanent, and not easily removed if/when adhesive is utilized. Additionally, rather than only stating that the kit meets the ANSI requirements when the “minimum fill is maintained”, it must read the following:

      “This kit meets the ANSI/ISEA Z308.1-2015 standard as sold. It contains first aid products which meet performance specifications detailed in the standard at the below required minimum fill. It will continue to be compliant only when maintained with products that meet the standard at specified quantities.”

      As it did before, the label is to note that the kit “may be suitable for some businesses”, should be judged by qualified persons to ensure it is sufficient for the particular workplace, and that employers may find it appropriate to house additional kits and/or supplies dependent on the job task(s). Now, the label is also to state the below:

      “Kits should be inspected frequently to ensure the completeness and usability of all first aid supplies. Any supply beyond its marked expiration date should be discarded and replaced.”

      In regard to the characteristics of the kit, the four types indicated in the prior standard have not changed; they remain as shown in the figure below. What has slightly changed is the performance rating of the Type IV kit. The 2009 guidelines described the kits within the drop test by the container unit size, whereas they are now listed by the approximate dimensions of the case, as the current standards do not require the kits be unitized.ANSI_Types_I-IV

      Lastly comes the criteria to be met in regard to the performance of the components within the first aid kits, some of which have remained the same and others the contrary. Additionally, there have been items removed as well as others added. The below charts compare the requirements between the previous and current standards of the minimum fill for first aid kits, with the gray areas indicating excluded product.

      2009

      ANSI_Z308_2009

      2015 Class AANSI_Z308_2015_A

      2015 Class BANSI_Z308_2015_B

      Overall, as ANSI was developed in 1918, the organization is surely versed amongst the many industries they set standards for including but not limited to that of first aid. As regulations are ever-changing, and adopted and/or referenced by OSHA, it is crucial that businesses stay in compliance with the most current standards to ensure the safety of employees within the workplace. For the ease of our customers, we carry a variety of options related to the current ANSI standards, making compliance simpler than ever. For those whom have kits with depleted or expired content, refill packs are available to replace all the content and transform the unit to meet the current standards. For those whom have kits still equipped with the “ANSI 8” supplies and that have yet to perish, upgrade packs are available to add the needed content to the unit to get it up to par with the present minimum fill. Lastly, for those whom do not yet have a kit or would prefer the route of starting anew, fully stocked kits are available in a variety of sizes and styles. Read More about ANSI Z308.1-2015osha-ansi-new-compliance-requirements-now-effective

    • Zika Update

      While the initial "panic" over Zika has abated, the issue has in fact worsened. Many US States and Territories have taken measures to prevent and protect from the virus. As of Today, there are still no locally contracted cases know in the US and Dc, but many in US Territories - other cases are lab- or travel-related.

      Now, the National Institutes for Health (NIH) has launched a huge International study of approximately 10,000 women to study the Zika Virus and pregnancy - In a massive effort to enroll women throughout affected and potentially affected areas, NIH, with other health organizations have begun a multi-country study to evaluate the magnitude of health risks that Zika virus infection poses to pregnant women and their developing fetuses and infants. Learn more

      Data from the CDC:
      Pregnant Women with Any Lab Evidence of Zika Virus Infection as of June 9, 2016:

      • US States and DC: 234
      • US Territories: 189

      As of June 15, 2016 (5 am EST)

      • Zika virus disease and Zika virus congenital infection are nationally notifiable conditions.
      • This update from the CDC Arboviral Disease Branch includes provisional data reported to ArboNET for January 01, 2015 – June 15, 2016.

      US States

      • Locally acquired mosquito-borne cases reported: 0
      • Travel-associated cases reported: 755
      • Laboratory acquired cases reported:  1
      • Total: 756
        • Sexually transmitted: 11
        • Guillain-Barré syndrome: 3

      US Territories

      • Locally acquired cases reported: 1,436
      • Travel-associated cases reported: 4
      • Total: 1,440
        • Guillain-Barré syndrome: 6

      zika-virus

    • Happy Summer - Are you Ready for Summer Safety, Summer Sun and More? #Summer

      Today is the First Day of Summer! Summer means fun outdoors, at the beach, Barbecues, sports - so many great ways to enjoy fresh air and sunshine.. but only when you do it safely! Here are some of our favorite Summer Safety Tips:

      Don’t let Summer begin without getting geared up... as we explained during Extreme Heat WeekExcessive Heat is more common now with Global Warming, and more Heat Waves -  Heat is a Major Killer. Watch out for Heat Alerts and know the Symptoms of Heat Disorders.

      Other Safety Blog Posts we think you may enjoy when preparing for a safe Summer:

       

    • 3 Days left! Is your First Aid Kit ANSI 2015 compliance ready?

      New ANSI 2015 Standards for First Aid KitsFAO_ANSI-First-Aid-Kit-Calendar

      Are you ready for the change?

      The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) has changed the standard for first aid kits in the workplace. The new standard goes into effect June 17, 2016.

      First Aid Store offers a full line of kits to help meet the new ANSI standard and OSHA regulations.

      See all our ANSI 2015 Compliant First Aid Kits & Cabinets See all our ANSI 2015 Compliant First Aid Kits & Cabinets

      Choose from a wide assortment of kits designed to meet your needs.
      Find your kit today!

      Our professional customer service sales teams are ready for your questions. 

      Call us today at (877) 5-First Aid (877-534-7782)

      Learn more about the ANSI update:

    • #FlagDay

      Sflagbox2ince President Wilson first proclaimed Flag day on June 14th in 1916, this date has been a day to recognize the American Flag and its adoption and symbolism in the USA. The United states Flag was originally adopted by the Second Continental Congress on June 14th in 1777.
      While recognized by Congress in 1949, Flag Day is not an "official" holiday, and must be proclaimed
      each year by the current US President (every President since Wilson has done so.)

    • Comply with new workplace first aid kit upgrade requirements

      URG-3684_3 In 2015, ANSI changed their first aid kit standards. On June 17th, 2016, the new standards go into effect. It is likely that the kit you currently house will no longer be up to date. While ANSI sets quality and safety standards and guidelines across many industries, they are not an enforcement agency. However, the standards they set forth are, essentially, the nationwide core base level that one should meet, or exceed. In fact, many states have adopted the regularly changing ANSI standards as their requirements to be followed. As such, it is highly recommended for businesses to act in accordance with these guidelines to ensure the safety of the employees and to avoid any possible citations or shortcomings, even if the state in which they reside does not mandate the standards be adhered to.

      1715This guideline change is mostly in regard to the degree of injuries that may occur as well as the content contained within the first aid kit. Two variants have been introduced – Class A, designed for areas in which typical or basic wounds may occur such as an office building, and Class B, constructed for environments with risk for more serious injuries such as a construction site. While the kit can be unitized (color-coded boxes) or bulk (loose, but organized, pieces), specific items must be included and even more precise product requirements are to be met (such as the tape’s width). Additionally, the outside label identifying the kit must include particular verbiage to indicate that the ANSI standards are only met if/when the content within the kit meets the stated minimum fill. Surely, these changes and requirements can be overwhelming or hard to compute, especially for those whom aren’t overly familiar with ANSI or what is required of them at their workplace. For the convenience of our customers, and in effort to help everyone stay compliant, we have designed “upgrade kit packs” so that an existing ANSI kit can be easily taken from the prior (2009) standards to the current (2015) guidelines. This is in addition to the many stocked units that we also carry, for those purchasing a kit for the first time or whom would prefer to “start over” anew.

      osha-ansi-new-compliance-requirements-cms-banner

      ALSO READ:

    • Prepared Pets?

      When planning for emergencies... have you considered your pets?

      What's in Your Pet Prep Kit?

      Graphic: What's in Your Pet Prep Kit?

      • Include your pets in your emergency plans
      • Build a separate emergency kit for your pets
      • Make sure and keep digital records and/or pictures to identify your pet after a disaster in case you become separated
      • Create a list of places that accept pets if an emergency happens

      Read more:

    • Preparation is Key: How to Make Sure Your Office is Hurricane Ready

      Disaster-Survival-GearREADY FOR A WILD ONE?

      Time to get your office ready for hurricane season - see our hurricane supplies for the office, be sure to visit our hundreds of articles about Disaster & Survival Preparedness and check out the great infographic from Quill below!

      Preparation is Key: How to Make Sure Your Office is Hurricane Ready

      PRE-pared means yo plan and supply yourself BEFORE Disaster Strikes! PRE-pared means yo plan and supply yourself BEFORE Disaster Strikes!
    • 7 Essential Items for Welding Safety

      weldWelding is undoubtedly a dangerous profession and whether you are a seasoned pro or a newbie DIYer learning welding skills for the first time, it is vital to wear the right safety gear.

      Without it you could damage your eyes with the brightness of the welding arc, you could suffer burns from sparks and even suffer illness in the long term from exposure to noxious gases. So what protective workwear and equipment do you need to stay safe on the job? Let's take a look:

      1 - Gloves

      First Aid Store offers training products on Welding Safety to remind employees that there are indeed a number of hazards associated with welding, and provide the information they need to work safely when involved with welding operations. Topics covered in these products include: Getting authorization for welding operations, Sparking and the risk of fire, Guards and protective barriers, Hazardous fumes and ventilation, The use of respirators and other personal protective equipment, Inspecting welding equipment, Proper welding safety procedures, Eye protection (welding helmets, filters, glasses and goggles) First Aid Store offers training products on Welding Safety to remind employees that there are indeed a number of hazards associated with welding, and provide the information they need to work safely when involved with welding operations. Topics covered in these products include: Getting authorization for welding operations, Sparking and the risk of fire, Guards and protective barriers, Hazardous fumes and ventilation, The use of respirators and other personal protective equipment, Inspecting welding equipment, Proper welding safety procedures, Eye protection (welding helmets, filters, glasses and goggles)

      To keep your hands safe while undertaking welding work you really need to wear some good quality gloves. They should be flame resistant to protect against sparks, and if kept dry will also reduce the extent of electric shocks.

      2 - Boots
      It's all about ankle coverage when it comes to footwear for welders. You should make sure you have a minimum of 6 inches coverage, again to protect yourself from sparks and debris. Thick leather is the best material to go for, and steel toe caps are always a good idea if you're working around heavy machinery.

      3 - Ear protection

      If the equipment you are using means that conversation is not easy at a normal level, it probably means that the equipment could be causing damage to your ears. Ears are also at risk from sparks, which is why noise-cancelling ear protectors are a good investment.

      4 - Helmets, glasses and goggles

      To stay safe when welding you need helmet, glasses and goggles, or a full face shield. The UV radiation caused by the burning of a welding arc can cause cataracts, retinal burning and other issues, plus sparks are another obvious hazard for the eyes. Welding helmets with suitable shading are a must if you want to look after your vision.

      A good tip is to choose a level of shade that makes the burning arc invisible, and then go one lighter. This will make sure you have good visibility and protection.

      Eye-Drops5 - Eye Drops

      Like Goggles, eye drops are essential for keeping your eyesight and avoiding damage to vision from dryness, heat and arc flasj

      6 - Fire-retardant workwear

      Burns are not uncommon injuries for welders, which is why fire-protective clothing is an absolute must. Make sure your skin is completely covered and never wear synthetic fabrics when welding. Thick, natural fabrics are the best choices, but a quick internet search will give you plenty of options for suitable welding wear. And if you have an employer it's their responsibility to provide you with suitable clothing - plus training, to help you avoid injury or accident.

      Welder 16 Unit First Aid Kit - Plastic7 - Welder First Aid Kit

      Welder's First Aid Kit in Durable, Sturdy plastic case with a rubber gasket for protection. Welder's Kit includes 1/2 oz. Industrial Eye Drops & 1 Oz. Eye Wash. Industrial strength workers deserve industrial strength care. Our 114-piece, 16-unit welder's first aid kit focuses on a wide range of injuries common to welders such as minor cuts, sprains, welder's arc and other common eye irritations. Products are contained in a sturdy plastic case with gasket.

      You can find out more about welding safety by reading Welding & Hot Work Fire Prevention ChecklistCauses of Welding Accidents, and in this recent guide which has several resources on the topic of welding workwear - http://www.r-techwelding.co.uk/welding-safety-the-essential-guide/

      So bear these points in mind if you are a welder of any kind, and stay safe out there!

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