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Did You Know That...

1948 years ago in AD 63 an earthquake in southern Italy by the gulf of Naples seriously damaged the ancient city of Pompeii causing an undetermined number of deaths and spread out destruction, but the locals went to work rebuilding in the same spot until they were buried by the eruption of the Vesuvius volcano 16 years later in AD 79.

Galveston TX Hurricanes

Average Brushed or hit every 2.94 years
Average Direct hit every 8.63 years

The Great Storm of 1900 - Sep 8th 1900 - Pop: 42,000 residents
Category 4 @ 135 mph -Great loss of life between 6,000 and 12,000 individuals – officially 8,000

The 1915 Storm, August 17th, Category 4 @ 135 mph
42    people dead in the Galveston area
$60 - 1915 million dollars in damage

Ike Sep 13th 2008 - The third most destructive hurricane to ever make landfall in the United States
Final landfall in Galveston Texas as a strong cat 2 with cat 5 equivalent storm surge winds extended 120 miles from the center.

Blamed for at least 195 deaths – 74 in Haiti and 112 in the USA 300 still missing. - Damages estimated at 24 billion (2008) US Dollars

Resulted in the largest evacuation in the state of Texas history and the largest search and rescue operation in US history

Nuclear Issues

Chernobyl, An Experiment Gone Wrong

On Saturday, April 26th, 1986 at 1:23 am, one of the reactors at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant exploded.
Ironically, the experiment consisted in testing how the power plant would respond in the event of an accident. The operators at the plant wanted to bring down the power output of the reactor to 25%, but over-confidence, poor training and poor knowledge of how a reactor works caused them to overdo it, and they ended up bringing down the power output to 1%. When they then tried to bring it up to 25%, the reactor overheated and exploded causing the worst nuclear accident in history.

Five U.S. nuclear reactors in earthquake zones

Status of the Nuclear Reactors at the Fukushima Daiichi Power Plant

How a Reactor Shuts Down and What Happens in a Meltdown

Hazards of Storing Spent Fuel

Timeline: Nuclear Plant Accidents

Why the Fukushima disaster is worse than Chernobyl

In graphics: Fukushima nuclear alert

Fukushima victims: homeless, desperate & angry

Japan Panel: Fukushima nuclear disaster "man-made"

More, Did You Know That


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Human Concerns: Contributing Factors of Workplace Violence
Posted on Monday, February 18 @ 23:33:51 PST by roradmin
By Felix Nater

Contrary to all the media hysteria on the gun theory and the rush to judgment, there are many contributing factors that motivate an individual to escalate his emotional appetite to vengeance. The warning signs are always evident in the aftermath. But the problem is the lack of investment in training and awareness for all in the festering stages during pre-violence periods. You might say it is the "tipping point' at work.

Here are some contributing factors you might want to consider:

- prone to violence or references to violence
- poor or overly authoritative management practices
- permissive workplace environments where toleration of name calling,
   abusiveness and intimidation is the norm
- workplaces where a lack of awareness tends to dismiss or overlook the indicators
- insensitivity to diverse workplace issues
- acceptable workplace banter just in fun
- spontaneous reactions to ongoing harassment and intimidation
- revenge towards the perpetrators
- perceptions of iniquities
- intense media coverage and TV attention
- getting even with the company or society

These contributing factors have environmental and societal impact and are often taken for granted. Supervisors often justify not taking any corrective action because the need to take action is unclear. In the case of Domestic Violence in the workplace, most supervisors do not get involved because they feel incompetent to deal with the situation or feel it is non of their business.

Who Cause Workplace Violence

It is important to remember that workplace violence is not only perpetrated by employees and the threat of an assault, robbery or rape can happen by non employees during their work day or related to their work. However, it is also important to know that the employee you hired years earlier is not the same person you think you know today.

There are many causes of workplace violence that have nothing or very little to do with the workplace. Yet, knowing what to look for could help the employee before things got worse.

Such causes that might lead to violence could include the following:
- known history or violent past behavior
- changes in personal situations such as confrontational divorces or
   caustic relationships
- extreme financial hardships
- health problems
- individuals who become mentally deranged
- bitter matrimonial disputes
- knowing the type of community you work in
- societal and environmental influences

Suggested Internal Controls

Technology and security awareness combined might help, however; technology alone is not the solution. What good is the deployment of technology without training that explains the value? The administered policy will not contain the emotions of a vengeful person, but the involved supervisor can have an interdictive value. Establishing clear reporting procedures encourage timely reporting of of potentially hostile situations from escalating.

Proactive involvement helps to create a supportive environment in a workplace setting where the need to take appropriate action is supported because management is willing to commit resources. Terminating employees because that is the necessary act must be a guided process to insure a prudent approach to minimize the need to get even. Most terminations are a business decision that is handled by an insensitive manager.

Things To Do...

- Conduct security awareness training down to the lowest level.
- Select the optimum termination environment.
- Include informational mailings with paychecks.
- Designate a time of year as Workplace Violence Prevention
   Awareness. Key will be the workplace culture that discourages such feelings.
- Incorporate Employee Assistance Programs as part of a workplace Wellness Program.
- Establish clear reporting instructions that places accountability and
   responsibility to report and document observations.
- Have an anonymous reporting system to protect the source.
- Conduct background checks that offer more insight into the process
   to protect against the "vacationing" criminal or predator or falsification of applications.
- Employees undergoing difficult marriage relationships should be encouraged to seek help.
- Do provide training for leadership in workplace violence prevention for all levels of management.

Knowing what to do and how to react can help to mitigate the threat of workplace violence and protect as many as possible from the violent act. Remember, while bullets can wound or kill you, so can a flying object or accidental fall. *Stop practicing theory and deal with situational awareness.

And finally but not last, formulate a threat assessment team approach composed of key players to review and evaluate reports or observations of potential situations to prevent escalation. Consider situations that might escalate as justification for convening the threat assessment team. This is particularly important in workplace environments where confidentiality issues protect privacy of individuals from external disclosure of information.

"Evaluate before you have to investigate". "Emphasize common sense before firing." "Take favoritism out of the decision process regardless of the relationship".

Felix P. Nater is the president and owner of Nater Associates, Ltd. a workplace violence prevention and workplace security management consultant who helps educate and inform businesses and organizations to minimize the threat of workplace violence through the integration and synchronization of resources.

You can view his services at

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