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Lt. Col. Robert Darling - 2018 Keynote Speaker

Former Whitehouse Airlift Operations Officer during September 11, 2001

Lt. Col. Darling retired from the United States Marine Corps in 2007 with just over twenty years of active duty service.  After an impressive early career piloting attack helicopters in Desert Shield, Desert Storm, and as a presidential pilot with Marine Helicopter Squadron One, he was handpicked in October 2000 to work for the White House Military Office, Airlift Operations Department.  It was in this position that, during the attack of September 11, 2001, he supported the President, Vice President and National Security Advisor in the underground President's Emergency Operations Center (PEOC) and witnessed unprecedented leadership and decision making at the highest levels of our government.  

Lt. Col. Darling chronicles these developments in his book: 24 Hours Inside the President's Bunker, 9/11/01: The White House, and shares the principles of crisis leadership and decision making with his audiences with an “edge of your seat” presentation that’ll take you from the moment the attack was realized, to the courageous decisions made to stop it, to the safeguards and policies our country now has in-place in an attempt to prevent it from ever happening again.   This presentation is designed to ensure we, as a nation, never forget the events of 9/11/01, and to inspire all leaders to take the necessary steps to protect and safeguard their employees, organizations and their communities.

2018 Breakout Sessions

Workplace Safety?  There’s An App For That! – Jennifer Kurek, Occupational Safety and Health Coordinator, University of Maryland College Park

During this session, we will explore how your smartphone can help make your everyday operations both seamless and safe. From safety professionals to machine shop managers, this session is designed to introduce everyone to specific apps that are FREE, relevant, user-friendly, and immediately implementable in the workplace.
Download Speaker Presentation (.pdf)


Machine Shop Safety: Man vs. Machine – Jennifer Kurek, Occupational Safety and Health Coordinator, University of Maryland College Park

Conduct a machine shop safety audit with the University of Maryland! During this session, we will explore common audit findings and helpful apps/resources for everyone from safety professionals to machine shop managers. We will also delve into the services and support that our Occupational Safety and Health unit provides for our machine shops on campus as well as discuss our efforts toward creating the University of Maryland’s first machine shop safety program.
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Civilian Response to Active Shooter Events- C.R.A.S.E. – 1st SGT Jon Hill, Agency Training Coordinator, Maryland State Police

Over the past two decades, horrific mass shootings have been thrust into public consciousness. Studies have shown that it is the initial actions taken by citizens immersed in an active shooter event that have the greatest impact on their survival. 

C.R.A.S.E. is a part of the Advance Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training (ALERRT) program which operates under Texas State University in San Marcos, Texas. C.R.A.S.E. arms citizens with the information they need to know to protect themselves and others around them in those crucial first three minutes, should they be caught in a critical incident. The program covers the body’s disaster response system, how it affects decision-making during high-stress incidents, and how to employ the “avoid-deny-defend” principles to counter an active assailant.  This is a great curriculum to compliment your current active-shooter program.
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OSHA/MOSH Update - William Dallas, CSP, Assistant Commissioner, Maryland Occupational Safety and Health (MOSH)

Session synopsis:
Get the latest updates on new regulations that affect you and your industry, including post-accident drug testing, silica, and on-line record keeping.  Receive important updates, latest news, and regulatory information in Occupational Safety & Health.
Download Speaker Presentation (.pdf)



Don’t Hold Your Breath:  Silica Standard for General Industry – Michael Peelish, Esq., Law Office of Adele Abrams, Esq.
To better protect workers from dangerous crystalline silica, OSHA has finalized two new silica standards: one for general industry and maritime, and the other for construction. This presentation will provide an update and overview of commonsense, affordable and flexible strategies for employers to protect workers in their workplaces from the serious risks posed by silica exposure. Key enforcement issues and solutions will be highlighted.
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A Hard Hat Is Not Enough:  Seven Prevention Tips to Reduce Brain Injury at the Workplace…and Everywhere Else – Bryan Pugh, Executive Director, Brain Injury Association of Maryland

These days, when most people think of Brain Injuries, the first images conjured up are those of football players or people in car accidents. But brain injuries can happen in a variety of ways including strokes, aneurysms, brain cancers, and even drug overdoses. All employers would be wise to institute safety protocols to minimize the risks of brain injuries, and learn how to work with employees with brain injuries if they do occur. This session will provide a general overview of brain injury, discuss some simple techniques to reduce brain injury in the workplace, and present ideas on how best to work with employees and other individuals with brain injuries.
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Real-World Effectiveness of Collision Avoidance Technologies – Dr. Ian Reagan, IIHS senior research scientist, Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS)

Dr. Reagan’s presentation will describe work the Institute has done to estimate the real-world effectiveness of collision avoidance systems as measured by insurance claims and police-reported crashes. The talk will also include a summary of Institute research to identify factors that may be limiting the effectiveness of these technologies.
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Walking Working Surfaces – Rod Markley, CSP, CHST, CET, VP of Training and Consultation, Chesapeake Region Safety Council

Slips, Trips and Falls are among the leading causes of serious work-related injuries and deaths whether from heights or on the same level of a walking-working surface.  In 2017, after 46 years, OSHA revised the outdated general industry Walking-Working Surfaces and Personal Protective Equipment (Fall Protection Systems) standards. The final rule applies to all general industry workplaces and covers all walking-working surfaces, which include horizontal and vertical surfaces such as floors, stairs, roofs, ladders, ramps, scaffolds, elevated walkways, and fall protection systems.  This presentation will give you an overview of OSHA’s final rule on Walking-Working Surfaces including new training and inspection requirements.
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Recent Advancements in Artificial Intelligence and Autonomous Systems – Ashley Llorens, Chief, Intelligent Systems Center

Ever wonder if a potential safety problem could be better handled, if only there was robot to do it?  The Intelligent Systems Center at JHU APL will be demonstrating their marsupial robot and discussing advances in artificial intelligence that will be relevant to safety products in the near future.


Outdoor demo #1 = Rescuing from a Fall
Speaker = Brian Devaney -Territory Sales Manager, Sales Solutions, Inc.

Learn about self-rescue planning and techniques, and equipment options for working at heights when Fall Protection is necessary.  See what preparation and/or types of devices are available depending on the situation and learn how the devices work.  Also included are details on suspension trauma.


Outdoor demo #2 = DUI SIMulator, PA DUI Association

Feel first-hand how alcohol impairs your ability to steer and brake, while driving safely in the SIMulator.  You can also drive under other adverse conditions, including snow, fog, and heavy traffic.  The SIMulator has a real dashboard, steering wheel and driver’s seat, giving you a realistic experience.