Navy Safety Center "Friday Funnies"
One thing that I miss out on being retired is the weekly "Friday Funnies" that come out from the Navy Safety Center; you can get them on-line, but you have to be coming from a .mil address. They're summaries of various injuries that Navy and Marine Corps people have suffered, written in a "humorous" style that some find offensive, but that I think is effective in getting more people to read the message. Here's an article with one paragraph from one of the messages -- it's not really very funny, but you might get a sense of how they don't do it in a strictly "official" style. The main thing is that I think it prevents injuries because people will take extra safety precautions simply to avoid any chance of making the message; nobody wanted to see themselves in a story starting, "Recently, a Navy Lieutenant Commander was..."
So there I was, Engineer on the Connecticut in the shipyard. One of my electricians had gotten shocked the month previous when the shipyard had wired one of the cabinets wrong, and had hooked a DC line into an AC cabinet. We had "tagged out" the cabinet to do some work (making sure all the power sources that were supposed to be going in were turned off), and my guys had also done a check with a multimeter for any voltage that might be still there; however, if you're looking for AC, you use the AC setting on the meter -- it wouldn't pick up DC. So, when my guy went in with his hands, he got a nasty little DC bite, even though he'd done everything right.
As I said, this had happened the previous month, and I was sitting in my office writing my "night orders" for the weekend. The "Friday Funnies" had come out, and I was thinking my guys might get a kick out of seeing themselves in print. So, I transferred the message over to Word, and "added" an additional Funny: "And finally, from the submarine world, we have a report of an electrician who was so dumb that he got shocked by DC in an AC cabinet. What a dummy! What a maroon! If the bubbleheads are so dumb that they don't even know what kind of electricity they're supposed to get shocked by, I suppose that explains why they go to sea in a ship designed to sink that's built by the lowest bidder."
I printed the message up with the new addition, attached it to my night orders, and sent them back to the Engine Room, figuring that it'd be obvious that it wasn't a real message. About 10 minutes later I get a call from my Engineering Duty Officer, who says, "Eng, these guys are really pissed about the Safety Message." I went back to explain, but until I showed them a real copy of the message the guys thought it was for real.
I'll be back in an update with my all-time favorite Friday Funny.
Going deep for a short sprint...
Okay, I'm back. This story is pretty much straight out of a Wile E. Coyote cartoon. It started by describing how a Sailor decided to cut down a large branch from a tree in his yard. This sounds like the makings of a disaster from the beginning, but it talks about how he made sure that it wouldn't fall on anything, he had someone to hold the ladder for him (since it was a high branch, the top of the ladder just reached the branch), how he had the right safety equipment, including a lanyard for the chain saw, and even how he made sure that the cut would be on the opposite side of the ladder than the tree trunk. The guy goes up, cuts off the very large branch, and as it breaks free, the weight that had been holding the remaining portion of the branch in place is released, causing that portion, on which the top of the ladder was resting, to spring upwards, above the top of the ladder. So the guy's high on the ladder, with a friend holding the ladder at the bottom on the side opposite the one the guy climbed up, now acting as the pivot on a very large and almost vertical teeter-totter equivalent. I can just imagine the guy's thoughts as he started falling. The visual generated by the story is just too much.
Anyway, if anyone with a .mil account is interested in going to the Friday Funnies archive and finding it from 1996 or 1997, send it to me and I'll post it.
They also have a humorous collection of confusing road signs that's worth a look...