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A Day in the Life of Seaman Timmy.

When the C.O. of USS Monterey challenged the ship's safety team to find a way to elevate the safety culture onboard, they saw an opportunity. During a quarterly safety committee meeting, they noted that although numerous programs (such as electrical safety, tagout, heat stress, and DAPA) focus on safety for Sailors, there was little collaboration.


To address the issue, they developed a lesson topic guide (LTG) titled "A Day in the Life of Seaman Timmy," aiming to raise awareness of the importance of the safety aspects of the ship's numerous programs. The LTG was executed as a station in one of the quarterly safety standdowns and was a huge success. Sailors walked away with an understanding that if they take advantage of various programs onboard, they will help prevent mishaps and improve risk management.

Lesson Topic Guide

Introduction: The purpose of this training topic is to increase awareness of the various programs and concepts enforced onboard Monterey that contribute to the overall safety of Sailors. Safety is not a single, stand-alone program. It is a culture we must sustain onboard by supporting and embracing the programs and concepts we teach.

Materials needed:

* Ball of string

* Placards for each of the programs or concepts

Instruction time: 25-20 minutes


1. Introduce Seaman Timmy, who is an average Sailor trying to balance all of his work obligations with his personal life.

2. Get volunteers to represent programs. They stand in a circle and briefly define their placards.

* Drug and Alcohol Prevention

* Hazardous Materials

* Integrity--Doing what's right even when no one is looking

* Physical Fitness--Keeping Sailors combat ready

* Damage Control--Fighting for the ship

* TRiPS--Planning for long drives

* Force Protection--Keeping the ship safe from outside forces

* Personal Protective Equipment

* OPSEC--Protecting classified information

* CSAAD--Coalition of Sailors Against Destructive Decisions

* Electrical Safety

3. Read the "Day in a Life of Seaman Timmy" handout, stopping at each "Stop and Think" bullet.

4. Encourage the audience to participate by having them identify the problem at each bullet and what program or concept would solve that problem.

5. Have each representative take the string each time they are identified (most will be identified more than once). The string creates an interconnected web among all of the various programs by the end of the exercise.

6. Ask debrief questions at the end of the exercise. Emphasize the following take-aways:

* Programs and core values we enforce onboard and in the Navy are in place for your safety

* Safety is not a program--it is a culture that must be sustained by every Sailor

* Safety and integrity go hand in hand

* Safety is a culture on and off the ship


It's a beautiful Saturday morning, and Seaman Timmy is wondering how to spend his day. His girlfriend from back home in South Carolina calls, and he suddenly realizes how much he misses her. He decides to drive the 330 miles to Myrtle Beach to visit her. He figures that he has all of Sunday to make it back in time to Norfolk for Monday morning PT.

How far away from his duty station is Seaman Timmy allowed to drive before having to notify his chain of command? What form must he fill out? Why is a Travel Risk Planning System form necessary? (TRiPS)

As he grabs his wallet, his driver's license falls out. He remembers that it expired two months ago, and he hasn't had time to renew it yet.

Since his LPO made him DCPO, he's had a lot of maintenance on his plate. There's no way his Chief or DivO would give him time to go to the DMV during the work day. He shrugs. If he could make it two months without a valid driver's license, he could make it one more weekend.

How much does a ticket for an expired license cost? Why take this unnecessary risk? Talk to your chain of command about personal issues. They don't want you driving without a valid license, either. (CSAAD)

Seaman Timmy has a great time at home with his girlfriend and family. Sunday afternoon arrives too soon, and he has a long drive ahead of him. His girlfriend tries to convince him to stay and rest, but he insists on driving back to Norfolk. He doesn't want to get in trouble for missing PT. The drive back is brutal, and he nods off at the wheel a few times. Traffic is light, however, and he's able to avoid an accident. He arrives back at the barracks at 0400 and promises to never do that drive again without a few energy drinks in his system

Is the solution to drink more high-sugar/ high-caffeine drinks? He could have left Myrtle Beach earlier, taken a nap before starting the drive, or (better yet) not take the trip if there wasn't ample time to travel safely. (TRiPS)

His alarm goes off at 0530 after what feels like a five-minute nap. He groans when he pulls up to the Berkeley Center and sees everyone out at the PT field. He forgot that today is the mock-PRT. His LPO has been pushing him to get back into shape so he can comfortably pass the PRT. After his exhausting weekend, he can't muster the energy to jog more than two laps. As other people finish the run, he jogs to the center of the field, stretches, and jumps back into his car to get showered before quarters.

Who is Seaman Timmy cheating by not fully participating in PT? Why is physical fitness an important part of our lives? (Physical Fitness)

On the way to the barge, he runs into his section leader, who reminds him that he has the 22-03 watch tonight. Seaman Timmy's heart sinks when he realizes that he's on duty today. Can he ever catch a break?

Read the watchbill. Plan ahead. Had Seaman Timmy known he had a long duty day on Monday, would he still have gone on that last-minute trip? (CSAAD)

Seaman Timmy goes about his day, dreaming about taking a nap. He lays out the MRC and MSDS for some maintenance that he has to do. He sees that he needs wrap-around safety goggles as opposed to the standard safety glasses that he wears every day. He thinks about how long it would take to track down a pair of those and decides to wear the ones he has with him.

What's the worst case scenario? His standard safety goggles could be ineffective for the type of hazmat he's using; he could injure himself. (PPE)

He continues his scheduled maintenance all morning. He hears 8 bells ring over the 1MC. Is it already lunch time? He looks down at the hazmat he checked out to do his maintenance and knows that he can't check it back in during lunch time. He stows the hazmat in his division's fan room for half an hour while he grabs some chow--he'll check it in properly after lunch.

What risks are associated with leaving hazmat in non-designated storage? (Hazmat)

Once the mess line is secured, he heads back to the ship to get the hazmat when his work-center supervisor (WCS) stops him. He reminds Seaman Timmy about the captain's Division in the Spotlight walkthrough this afternoon. Seaman Timmy was proud when the WCS made him POIC of the workshop, but he forgot to field day in preparation for walkthrough. Seaman Timmy hastily cleans up all high dust and debris, then checks all of the fittings and items on his compartment check-off list. He realizes that he's missing a T-wrench by the watertight scuttle. He remembers seeing one in the space next door, so he borrows it and puts it in his empty place. He makes a note to return the T-wrench tomorrow before anyone in the other division realizes it's gone.

Why would it be better to leave the missing T-wrench fitting as is rather than "borrow" from another work center? How does one missing T-wrench affect our ship's damage-control capability? (Damage Control)

He heads back towards the fan room to retrieve the hazmat when his chief angrily storms up to him and asks why he's not at training. E-4 and below have DAPA training today. As Seaman Timmy makes his way to the barge mess decks, he thinks about how useless this training is for him. Everyone's got the point by now that "spice" is illegal for Sailors. What more do they need to tell us?

What is DAPA's mission? Is spice the only drug or substance that DAPA teaches us to stay away from? (DAPA)

It's almost 1600 and Seaman Timmy is thinking only about the nap he wants to take before his 22-03 watch. He scans the POD for any other meetings or events he needs to be at and sees that his work is complete for the day. He tosses the POD in the trashcan and heads off to grab supper.

Where do we trash PODs? Why is this important? How does one POD affect the operational security of our ship? (OPSEC)

After supper he gets wrapped up in a March Madness basketball game and doesn't end up leaving the lounge until he is called over the 1MC for evening colors. He's surprised that it's 1900 already. He makes it across the brow just as the color detail marches off. The Officer of the Deck directs Seaman Timmy to turn on all the lights back aft. Seaman Timmy remembers his buddy used the breakers to turn the lights off earlier that morning so he his relieved to only have to turn on one breaker as opposed to running all around the ship turning all of the lights on. Once colors goes down, he finally gets into his rack for some rest before watch.

Is this the right way to turn the lights on and off? Using a breaker is easier, but why is it unsafe? (Electrical Safety)

Seaman Timmy groggily checks out his weapon and makes his way over to the barge to relieve the Petty Officer of the Watch. Jealous of the off-going watchstander, Seaman Timmy assumes the watch. He thinks about his fun but tiring weekend and how much he accomplished today. He reminds himself about the hazmat and T-wrench he needs to return before anyone realizes they aren't in their proper places.

As he looks around the shack, he notices a pile of jackets and a couple of Kevlar helmets. They are just thick enough that he can stack them on top of each other and lean on them just slightly. His feet have been aching all day, and the nap he took wasn't enough to recharge his batteries after that long drive Sunday night. Just as he gets comfortable, he spots a white helmet coming across the brow. He jumps up and dutifully challenges the section leader who arrived to check in before Taps. Seaman Timmy reports that all is well and that he is standing a "vigilant" watch.

How does Seaman Timmy's complacency affect the force protection of the ship? How could he have avoided being tired on watch? (Force Protection)

The rest of the watch drags on slowly without any disturbances. Seaman Timmy checks his cell phone for the time and sees that he has a new text message. It won't hurt to check the message since nothing's going on anyway.

How many times have we all thought "nothing's going on anyway"? If nothing ever happened, we wouldn't need a watch in the first place. You are there in case something does happen. (Force Protection)

0245 finally rolls around and he spots his relief coming down the ladder. He turns over the watch and hits his rack, glad for the day to be over.


Debrief Questions

1. Who is Seaman Timmy? Is he the universal dunce who is always blamed for mishaps? Can he be a first class? A chief? An officer?

2. Seaman Timmy survived the Saturday-through-Monday period during which we followed him around. How much longer do you think he'll survive before hurting himself, a shipmate, or the ship?

3. How many times did Seaman Timmy think about and try to put away the hazmat? How often do you get pressured by your chain of command and are forced to put their priorities ahead of your own daily tasks? Is it common to get side-tracked and place safety on the back-burner?

4. How are safety and integrity related?

5. What does the string represent?

6. What is the difference between a safety program and a safety culture?

7. What are some other "Seaman Timmy" moments that happen daily? How can we prevent those from happening?

By Ltjg. Arlene Valenzuela Crews, Assistant Operations Officer, USS Monterey (CG 61)
COPYRIGHT 2010 U.S. Naval Safety Center
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Author:Crews, Ltjg. Arlene Valenzuela
Date:Sep 22, 2010
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