The Howling Wolf

Just as our wolf logo symbolizes the leadership, loyalty, strength of character and sense of family that is displayed by emergency responders, The Howling Wolf serves as the voice of the John Petropoulos Memorial Fund. A wolf’s howl attracts other members of the pack, invites communication and creates a strong bond between pack members. We hope this blog will have the same impact on emergency responders, workplace safety professionals and traffic safety advocates, bringing us all together in the same pack and providing valuable information about workplace safety issues affecting first responders.

Check in frequently for updates on JPMF events and initiatives, interesting research and to add your own howl to our pack.

Put Some Resolve in Your Safety Resolutions

Welcome to a new year and a new decade!

January is typically a month of resolutions for people. It’s a time when people commit to do – or not do – something in an effort to improve their lives.

When it comes to resolutions there can be a tendency to easily cast them aside or forget about them, but we’d encourage you to show a little more commitment to any safety-focused resolutions you may be considering or have already taken on. In short, put some resolve in your resolutions.

So, what does that mean exactly? Well, here are three tips to help you achieve success with your safety resolutions in 2020.


If your goal is to be less distracted while driving this year, the path to that outcome could take several different roads (pardon the pun). It could incorporate personal habits, technological strategies, pre-planning methods, etc. but if you are not deliberate in your approach you are destined to fail. Will you throw your phone in the trunk before you start driving? Will you adjust phone settings to reduce your engagement with your mobile device? Will you plot out the route to your destination before you put your vehicle in motion? These are all strategies to consider.

EyesOnRoad-page0001 (2)

As Benjamin Franklin noted: “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” So, when you’re enacting that prevention, plan ahead and develop a strategy that works best for you. Don’t be abstract in your approach – think about realistic ways you can develop better habits behind the wheel and set a series of smaller goals that will help you reach the bigger outcome you hope to achieve. Allow yourself to have setbacks here and there but do your best to stick to the plan you lay out.


For many people, speaking up is not a normal course of action. It is often easier to sit back and watch than it is to make your voice heard.

“Bad men need nothing more to compass their ends, than that good men should look on and do nothing,” said John Stuart Mill in 1867. That quote morphed into this more frequently cited comment: “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.”

That may seem like an extreme take on inaction and apathy, but we know that workplace fatalities and injuries are often very easily prevented. In the case of Const. John Petropoulos, a safety railing or improved signage would have saved his life.

With that in mind, if your Spidey senses go off or if you spot something that is amiss, don’t ignore it. This can be at your own workplace – perhaps you notice that the fire extinguishers have not been checked for over a decade or the smoke alarm batteries have not been changed for years. Your observations can also be useful at other work sites. Are exits blocked at the restaurant your dining at? Did you drive past roofers that are not using harnesses?

People often default to silence because they fear that butting in can be met with resistance or criticism, but it costs nothing to share your observations and let people act (or not) on the information you provide.


Of course, there are times when the appropriate move is alerting a potential hazard to the right person, and other occasions where taking action yourself is the best approach. Before you do act on eliminating a safety concern, ask yourself if you should be dealing with the problem or if it is better suited for a safety professional or a first responder.

If it is something that you can fix quickly, easily and safely then embrace this proverb: “Do not be wise in words, be wise in deeds.”


You can do this by keeping your home, car and work space clean and free of clutter that can pose a danger to others. Conduct hazard assessments of your environment and identify ways you can make safety improvements.

For more ideas and safety tips follow this link.

We wish you all the best in 2020 and hope you have a happy, healthy and safe new year!

Comment |

Leave a Reply

Spam Protection by WP-SpamFree

Leave a Reply

Spam Protection by WP-SpamFree

  • What’s the Howling Wolf

    What's The Howling Wolf? Learn more
    Latest Posts
  • Archives

  • Stay Connected