Video Library

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Hemphill Memorial

Listen as Gerry Schumann, NASA Institutional Safety and Mishap Investigation program executive, explains how Hemphill, Texas, paid its respects to Columbia’s astronauts.

A New Way of Doing Business

Danny Olivas, astronaut of STS-117 and STS-128 and founder of the Center for the Advancement of Space Safety and Mission Assurance, explains how spaceflight is changing and the importance of sharing the lessons of the past with new generations who may not be familiar with previous spaceflight programs.

Laboratory Pressure Vessel Explosion

Safety Message

In February 2016, the University of Hawaii had an incident where a highly reactive mix of pressurized gases within a high-pressure tank encountered a spark, likely from static electricity. As a result, the tank was blown apart, seriously injuring the researcher and causing significant equipment damage.

While this incident didn’t happen at NASA, we should ask, have we protected our pressure systems from similar risk? In this month’s Safety Message, Steve Lilley, senior safety engineer from the NASA Safety Center, briefs the recent System Failure Case Study on this incident, including how NASA can learn from this major mishap.

Did You Check On Your Team?

Safety Message

If you were having surgery, you would hope your surgeon was coming in well-rested and focused on the job — after all, your life is in her hands. While we may not be performing life-and-death surgeries, that doesn’t mean our employees lives aren’t in our hands. It’s essential that we all check on our employees and make sure they are fully prepared for the job at hand each and every day — whether that’s ensuring reasonable shifts, making sure everyone is up-to-speed coming off a shift change or checking on an employee’s ability to continue working after an incident. It's part of taking care of your people.

In this month’s Safety Message, Safety and Mission Assurance Director for Stennis Space Center Freddie Douglas III will present “Did You Check on Your Team?” with tips on how to assure a safe, productive and efficient work place.

Vaping — An Alternative to Smoking?

Safety Message

After years of important warnings, we are now all aware of the dangers of traditional smoking. But what about vaping? Is it still risky despite the lack of tobacco? Are there still dangerous chemicals I could inhale second hand?

Vaping is the act of inhaling water vapor through a personal vaporizer or electronic cigarette. While this is a newer trend, there are some interesting statistics about their use, as well as some pros and cons. In this month’s Safety Message, Dr. Vince Michaud, deputy chief health and medical officer, discusses this information, governmental regulations and NASA's policies on vaping, as well as the agency's smoking cessation programs at center clinics. 

Electric Potential and Electric Field Imaging With Dynamic Applications and Extensions

In this webinar, Dr. Ed Generazio, former Nondestructive Evaluation program manager for NASA's Office of Safety and Mission Assurance, gives his presentation "Electric Potential and Electric Field Imaging With Dynamic Applications and Extensions."

Are You Ready to Respond?

Safety Message

Your coworker collapses. Your boss falls and hits her head. An intern cuts his hand. What would you do?

The first few minutes after a serious injury are critical. While it’s only natural to feel a moment of shock, your quick thinking and ability to respond can help save the life of an injured person. You are the first responder.

This month’s Safety Message walks you through how the body responds to an emergency situation as well as what you should do should you ever be the first responder on the scene. These scenarios have happened: We’ve seen storms strike several of our centers that threaten to injure our employees and employees have collapsed on the job due to medical conditions. Eventually, these things, and more, will happen again. Are you ready?

Skin Cancer Prevention and Screening

Safety Message

Each year in the U.S., over 5.4 million cases of non-melanoma skin cancer are treated in more than 3.3 million people. There are more new cases of skin cancer than breast, prostate, lung and colon cancer combined. One in five Americans will develop skin cancer over the course of a lifetime. Melanoma, the most lethal form of skin cancer, can develop from less dangerous types of skin cancer. Although simple screening exams can catch this process before it begins, one person dies of melanoma every hour. We are all vulnerable.

As a member of the National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention, NASA has been working to lower these statistics. The first year on the council, NASA was awarded the American Academy of Dermatology's Golden Triangle Award for our agencywide skin cancer prevention efforts.

Please take time to view this message from NASA's Chief Health and Medical Officer Dr. J.D. Polk and remember to set up a screening exam during your next physical. It’s quick and simple and could possibly save your life.

Fatigue and Mishap Risk

Safety Message

Does NASA’s culture pay tribute to overwork? A look at the careers of our best-known engineers, scientists and safety specialists can lead to a simple conclusion: long days and nights, accompanied by high stress, lead to high achievement. Successful research and exploration don’t happen without the investment of time and effort.

However, cumulative fatigue is not just unhealthy, it’s unproductive. We behave as if intoxicated, showing impaired judgment and slowed reflexes. No amount of coffee, energy drinks or other stimulants allows us to “power through” the exhaustion.

This month’s Safety Message focuses on the effects of fatigue in the workplace as well as countermeasures to prevent or mitigate those effects. I encourage you to discuss how to combat workplace fatigue with your staff and work to implement smarter scheduling and recognize human limitations.

Mining the FEVS

Safety Message

As many of you have heard me say, I believe that taking care of your people is essential to success. I’ve told the story that in the U.S. Marine Corps, all leaders are asked to do two things: accomplish the mission and take care of your people. Usually, this is followed with “If you do No. 2, your people will take care of No. 1.”

An important part of taking care of your people and accomplishing your mission, is ensuring, throughout your organization, people feel comfortable speaking up, without fear of reprisal. We have seen first-hand the effects fear of reprisal can have on a culture, as it was a theme for both the Challenger and Columbia mishaps, and we need to ensure that we’ve learned from our past and cultivate an environment where speaking up is not just accepted, but applauded.

As we approach the 15-year anniversary of the Columbia accident, I encourage you to review all the data available in the Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey and consider how you can enact positive change at every level in your organization to create an open, safe environment for everyone.

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Feature Videos

Learn about the Office of Safety and Mission Assurance, its disciplines and programs, and much more in these feature videos.

Safety Message

Safety Messages

Guest speakers deliver the monthly Safety Messages in these live recordings.

Knowledge Bytes

Knowledge Bytes

These short videos provide expert insight on various safety and mission assurance topics.

Policy Bytes

Policy Bytes

Policy owners explain recent changes to policies and standards in these short videos.

Event Videos

Event Videos

Video captures of live events on Safety and Mission Assurance topics.