ANSI Z308.1-2015 Standard Minimum Requirements  Workplace First Aid Kits and Supplies - Buy new ANSI Kits
ANSI Z308.1-2015 Standard Minimum Requirements Workplace First Aid Kits and Supplies - Buy new ANSI Kits

emergency

  • Hurricane Preparedness?

    You can't stop a tropical storm or hurricane, but you can take steps now to protect you,  your family, your business, and your community. Atlantic Hurricane Season is not over, and as we head into National Preparednes Month in September think about this year's theme “Don’t Wait. Communicate. Make Your Emergency Plan Today.”and how it applies to you and your readines... Hurricanes are not just a coastal concern, they can, of course batter the coasts with winds, rain, and storm surges, but they can also strike interior states, and can cause severe inland flooding.

    If you live in coastal areas at risk, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) encourages you to begin preparing yourself for hurricane season. The Atlantic hurricane season is June 1 through November 30 each year.

    Hurricane & Tsunami: Hurricanes, Tropical Storms, Cyclones, Storm Surge and Tsunami… Whew! First let us point out that Hurricanes are not just a coastal concern. Hurricanes cause serious harm inland as well. Don’t think that you won’t be impacted by hurricanes just because you are many miles from the coastline. You are not necessarily immune to the ravages of Hurricanes and Tropical Storms. Tropical cyclones often produce widespread, torrential rains in excess of 6 inches, which may result in deadly and destructive floods. In fact, flooding is the major threat from tropical cyclones for people living inland. Flash flooding, defined as a rapid rise in water levels, can occur quickly due to intense rainfall. Longer term flooding on rivers and streams can persist for several days after the storm, and a Storm Surge (water from the ocean that is pushed toward the shore by the force of the winds swirling around the hurricane. This advancing surge combines with the normal tides and can increase the water level by 30 feet or more) can back up rivers and estuaries that normally flow freely to sea – creating overrun riverbanks upstream. Preparedness for these onslaughts includes raingear and ponchos, standard preparedness supplies and evacuation plans – plus all the flood considerations and extra attention to communication devices as landlines and mobile phones will almost certainly be out after major winds.

    Are you READY? Are you READY?

    Please follow these important hurricane preparedness tips from CDC:

    After you have read these tips, please review the other resources available on the CDC Hurricanes website.

  • Family Preparedness

    With National Parents’ Day this Sunday, we thought this would be a good time to remind you to take specific actions to prepare your family for emergencies.

    Some of these actions include:

    • Family PlanCreating a family emergency communication plan. Your family may not be together when disaster strikes, so it’s important to plan  ahead about how you will connect with each other;
    • Building a disaster supply kit.  A disaster supply kit is simply a collection of basic items your household may need in the event of an emergency. You may need to survive on your own after a disaster. This means having your own food, water, and other supplies in sufficient quantity to last for at least 72 hours. Local officials and relief workers will be on the scene after a disaster, but they cannot reach everyone immediately. You could get help in hours or it might take days; and
    • Practicing your emergency response plan. Making emergency plans is great, but practicing your plan by conducting drills will help your family’s response time when seconds count.

    Disasters can be stressful for kids. Try to make emergency planning fun for children in your family! Visit ready.gov/kids for exciting games, quizzes, and other resources to help young children and teens understand the importance of being prepared.

    READ MORE:

    ? Planning for Emergencies

    ? Family Emergency Readiness

    ? Make a Fire Escape Plan

    ? Blackouts & Brownouts: Prepare for Power Outages

    Disasters also impact older adults. Visit ready.gov/seniors to learn more about preparing older Americans for the unexpected.

  • Disaster Kit Storage

    Where will you be when Disaster Strikes? FEMA reminds us that you never know where you’ll be when an emergency occurs, so it’s a good idea to be ready wherever you are.  That means preparing supplies for your home, work, and vehicle. We always say Tip #1: Prepare your car before you prepare your home. Learn Why..

    The Ready Campaign has information about creating a disaster supply kit for each location.

    Preparedness and Survival Gear: Here. Preparedness and Survival Gear: Here.

    For your home:

    • Create a kit containing enough food, water, and supplies to last at least three days; and
    • Keep the kit in a designated place and make sure family members know where it is.

    For your work:

    • Be prepared to shelter in place for at least 24 hours;
    • Include food, water, and other necessities like medicines in your kit. Keep the kit in one container and be ready to grab and go; and
    • Have comfortable walking shoes in case an evacuation requires walking long distances.
    Auto and Vehicle Roadside Survival Kits – Bug Outs, Auto Emergency Tools & AAA Emergency Survival Kits Auto and Vehicle Roadside Survival Kits – Bug Outs, Auto Emergency Tools & AAA Emergency Survival Kits

    For your vehicle:

    • Include jumper cables, flashlights, clothing, and a first aid kit; and
    • Consider having a fully charged cell phone and phone charger, flares, baby formula, and diapers if you have a small child.

    Learn About Specific Types of Disaster Preparedness:

  • Updated National Planning Frameworks Released

    National planning frameworkToday, FEMA and its partners released the updated National Planning Frameworks for each mission area: Prevention, Protection, Mitigation, Response, and Recovery. The National Planning Frameworks, which are part of the National Preparedness System, set the strategy and doctrine for building, sustaining, and delivering the core capabilities identified in the National Preparedness Goal. They describe the coordinating structures and alignment of key roles and responsibilities for the whole community.

    The National Planning Frameworks, one for each preparedness mission area, describe how the whole community works together to achieve the National Preparedness Goal. The Goal is: “A secure and resilient nation with the capabilities required across the whole community to prevent, protect against, mitigate, respond to, and recover from the threats and hazards that pose the greatest risk.” The Goal is the cornerstone for the implementation of the National Preparedness System.

     

    The National Planning Frameworks are part of the National Preparedness System. There is one Framework for each of the five preparedness mission areas:

    The updated National Planning Frameworks incorporate cascading edits from the Nation Preparedness Goal refresh, including lessons learned from real world events and continuing implementation of the National Preparedness System. Additionally, FEMA and its whole community partners focused on clarifying linkages between mission areas; science and technology efforts within the mission areas; and format revisions to ensure alignment among frameworks as part of the update effort.

    FEMA is also hosting a series of 60-minute informational webinars with interested stakeholders to discuss the updates to the National Planning Frameworks. These webinars look to provide information regarding changes and updates as well as to answer questions related to the Frameworks.checklist

    Advanced registration is required due to space limitations. Registration is on a first come, first serve basis. To register, please visit: http://www.fema.gov/ppd-8-news-updates-announcements.

    For a copy of the documents go to: http://www.fema.gov/national-planning-frameworks.

    Direct questions to FEMA at: PPD8-NationalPreparedness@fema.dhs.gov.

    For more information on national preparedness efforts, visit: http://www.fema.gov/national-preparedness

  • Know about Dangers of Chemical & Biological Agents

    With concerns over Terrorism as a very real type of possible Disaster Emergency to prepare for, you need to know a bit about Chemical & Biological Agents which could be used to harm our population.

    Gas-MaskCHEMICAL AGENTS

    Chemical agents are poisonous gases, liquids or solids that have toxic effects on people, animals or plants. Most chemical agents cause serious injuries or death.

    Severity of injuries depends on the type and amount of the chemical agent used, and the duration of exposure. Were a chemical agent attack to occur, authorities would instruct citizens to either seek shelter where they are and seal the premises or evacuate immediately.

    Exposure to chemical agents can be fatal. Leaving the shelter to rescue or assist victims can be a deadly decision. There is no assistance that the untrained can offer that would likely be of any value to the victims of chemical agents.

    BIOLOGICAL AGENTS

    Biological agents are organisms or toxins that have illness-producing effects on people, livestock and crops. Because biological agents cannot immediately be detected and may take time to grow and cause a disease, it is almost impossible to know that a biological attack has occurred. If government officials become aware of a biological attack through an informant or warning by terrorists, they would most likely instruct citizens to either seek shelter where they are and seal the premises or evacuate immediately.

    A person affected by a biological agent requires the immediate attention of professional medical personnel.

    Some agents are contagious, and victims may need to be quarantined. Also, some medical facilities may not receive victims for fear of contaminating the hospital population. Some potential threats include smallpox, botulism, anthrax, and the bubonic plague.

    More information on bio-terrorism preparedness and response is available online from the Department of Health and Human Services Center for Disease Control.

    Are you READY? Are you READY?
  • Bomb Threats and Explosions

    PREPARING FOR A BUILDING EXPLOSION

    The use of explosives by terrorists can result in collapsed buildings and fires. People who live or work in a multi-level building can do the following:

    BOMB THREAT

    Bomb-ThreatIf you receive a bomb threat, get as much information from the caller as possible. Keep the caller on the line and record everything that is said. Notify the police and the building management.

    After you've been notified of a bomb threat, do not touch any suspicious packages. Clear the area around suspicious packages and notify the police immediately. In evacuating a building, avoid standing in front of windows or other potentially hazardous areas. Do not block the sidewalk or streets to be used by emergency officials.

    DURING AN EXPLOSION OR FIRE EVACUATION

    In a building explosion, get out of the building as   quickly and calmly as possible. If items are falling off of bookshelves or from the ceiling, get under a sturdy table or desk. If there is a fire:

    • Stay low to the floor and exit the building as quickly as possible
    • Cover nose and mouth with a wet cloth
    • When approaching a closed door, use the palm of your hand and forearm to feel the lower, middle and upper parts of the door. If it is not hot, brace yourself against the door and open it slowly. If it is hot to the touch, do not open the door--seek an alternate escape route.
    • Heavy smoke and poisonous gases collect first along the ceiling. Stay below the smoke at all times.
  • By way of the Manteau (Via Poncho, not Pancho Villa)

    OK - So much for the clever title... We're here to talk about the all-in-one, really inexpensive (alright, darn it - cheap!) wonder tool for emergencies, survival and comfort: The Poncho.

    For as little as 74¢ each, these thingamajigs can be your salvation in a storm, and much more.

    Here are some interesting uses for a poncho:

    Use the poncho as a bag: Ever find yourself in need of a bag? We're not just talking about in an emergency - what if you are out and about, then the bag you are carrying precious cargo in bursts? Or you find a pile of free "what-evers" you want to collect? Well if you have your emergency ponchos stashed in your purse, backpack, glove box, desk, wherever - just tie off the neck and arms and BAM! You've got a large plastic bag!

     In an emergency, these are great for water collection, portage, and storage: Water is the most essential survival need. It can be scarce in survival situations. A poncho can be used to collect night-time dew, rainwater, or you can fashion it into a bladder for carrying or storing fresh water from a clean water source.

     A Poncho as a Tarp: Whether you need it to catch fallen items or protect from moisture below, or avoid dropping items or rain from above, what is a poncho but a sewn ‘sealed up tarp? Well... if you need to spread it out, just it open and just it flat!

     A Poncho can be Shelter: Open up and drape over a cord as a makeshift tent or shelter!

     Protection from the cold and wind: Warmth is critical to life and comfort - wind can pierce the warmest woolens, but these ponchos block the breeze and keep you snug as well as dry.

     First Aid: with a poncho - while everyone should have a good first aid kit with them at all times, there are situations one may find where improvisation is critical to first aid care giving.  A poncho can be used for a great number of first aid purposes, you can use as a sling, swathe, wrap, or tourniquet. If you must move the injured person, you can use it as a stretcher/drag/tow thingy. You can even make the same water bag mentioned above and fill with cold stream water to use as a cold compress!

     Emergency Signaling: Ponchos are often obnoxiously bright and can be used for signaling your location, waving or placing in a high location (on a peak, up a tree) to alert overhead searchers to your whereabouts,  and can also use to send smoke signals, or even as a trail marker.

     Cord/Rope: Ponchos materials have great tensile strength when twisted into a rope! Since quality ponchos are made from rip-resistant nylon or PVC, they are strong enough to turn into cords you can use for anything that needs to be tied. Just use scissors to cut them into long strips and braid if you need thicker/stronger!

     Shade: We typically think of ponchos for rain - but they are really useful protection against sun, too... set up a lean-to, canopy, or just hold over your head for protection from the sun's heat and UV rays.

     Bedding: Yep - in a pinch you can use a poncho as a pillow or mattress. Just stuff with leaves or extra clothing. Ponchos can also serve as make-shift Sleeping bag, or as a Sleeping bag cover, or bag liner!

     Sail: Sound far-fetched? Not really - a sail can be used to help float your way to safety on the raft you just lashed together with the poncho-made cording above, or can add a sail to a sled or drag you've fashioned to help bear the weight of your supplies or an injured person you are pulling along as you send your way to safety.

    While we can't spend a week writing this article, there are many, many more creative uses for a poncho. We've listed some here for you to use your imagination... if you don't "get it", write to us and ask us to explain how you would use a poncho for any of these in particular:

    Bear-proof food storage (tie in a tree using rope), Bellows for fire, Blanket, Body Bag, Bug-out bag cover, Gather fruit, berries and nuts, Gear raft or float, gloves / Hand Protection, Greenhouse, Hammock, Haul / Drag firewood, Insulation, Latrine bag (bucket liner), Mask (as in dust/protective, not Halloween - although there could be some fun ideas for that, too!), Mattress, Minnow trap, Padding, Papoose, for Patch and/or repair, Privy privacy, Sandbag, Scarecrow, Seat cushion, Shoe liner / Shoe Repair / Waterproofing  shoes, Sled, Sling seat, Solar shower/water heater, Splint padding, Waste or trash bag, Window covers... we could go on...

    Oh, yeah - you can use it as a poncho, too.
    Wow - what do you think? A good investment for 74¢?

    One-Size-Fits-All Disposable Rain Ponchos serve a myriad of uses - Rain Suits, too!

  • Tsunami Season: #tsunami ?

    Tsunami-HazardIs there such a thing as Tsunami Season? No. A tsunami can strike anywhere along an ocean coast at any time and can be very dangerous to life and property. While it is important if you live, work or play on the coast, to prepare for a tsunami, it is also important to realize that the effects can reach far inland following waterways and low spots causing extensive inland flooding. Meteotsunamis occur inland as well, especially along the Great Lakes.

    What is a tsunami?

    A tsunami is not a "Tidal Wave" as movies so often dramatically portray Tsunamis are a series of waves (not just one) caused by a large and sudden disturbance of the sea. Most tsunamis are caused by undersea earthquakes, but not all earthquakes cause tsunamis, and smaller earthquakes at or near water may cause tsunami-like results in large bodies of water other than oceans.

    Not all tsunamis act the same. And, an individual tsunami may impact coasts differently. A small tsunami in one place may be very large a few miles away. The speed of a tsunami depends on the depth of the ocean. In the deep ocean, tsunami waves are barely noticeable but can move as fast as a jet plane, over 500 mph. As the waves enter shallow water near land, they slow to approximately 20 or 30 mph. That is still faster than a person can run. As the waves slow down, they can grow in height and currents intensify. Most tsunami waves are less than 10 feet high, but in extreme cases, can exceed 100 feet. When a tsunami comes ashore, it will not look like a normal wind wave. It may look like a fast-rising flood or a wall of water. Sometimes, before the water rushes on land, it will drain away suddenly, showing the ocean floor, reefs and fish like a very low tide. Tsunamis can travel up rivers and streams that lead to the ocean. A large tsunami can flood low-lying coastal areas more than a mile inland. The series of waves that flood, drain away and then reflood the land may last for hours. The time between waves ranges from five minutes to an hour. The first wave to reach the shore may not be the largest or the most damaging. It is not possible to predict how long a tsunami will last, how many waves there will be, or how much time there will be between waves. Not all tsunamis act the same. And, an individual tsunami may impact coasts differently. A small tsunami in one place may be very large a few miles away.
    The speed of a tsunami depends on the depth of the ocean. In the deep ocean, tsunami waves are barely noticeable but can move as fast as a jet plane, over 500 mph. As the waves enter shallow water near land, they slow to approximately 20 or 30 mph. That is still faster than a person can run.
    As the waves slow down, they can grow in height and currents intensify. Most tsunami waves are less than 10 feet high, but in extreme cases, can exceed 100 feet. When a tsunami comes ashore, it will not look like a normal wind wave. It may look like a fast-rising flood or a wall of water. Sometimes, before the water rushes on land, it will drain away suddenly, showing the ocean floor, reefs and fish like a very low tide. Tsunamis can travel up rivers and streams that lead to the ocean. A large tsunami can flood low-lying coastal areas more than a mile inland.
    The series of waves that flood, drain away and then reflood the land may last for hours. The time between waves ranges from five minutes to an hour. The first wave to reach the shore may not be the largest or the most damaging. It is not possible to predict how long a tsunami will last, how many waves there will be, or how much time there will be between waves.

    Tsunamis are among the most powerful and destructive natural forces. Tsunami waves radiate outward in all directions from the causal disturbance and can move across entire ocean basins. Most tsunamis are caused by undersea earthquakes, but can also be caused by landslides, volcanic activity, certain types of weather and meteorites.  Weather occurrences, too can cause meteotsunamis, especially along the Gulf of Mexico and large water bodies such as the Great Lakes.

    What is a Meteotsunami?

    Meteotsunamis have characteristics similar to earthquake-generated tsunamis, but are caused by air pressure disturbances often associated with fast moving weather systems, such as squall lines.

    These disturbances can generate waves in the ocean that travel at the same speed as the overhead weather system. Development of a meteotsunami depends on several factors such as the intensity, direction, and speed of the disturbance as it travels over a water body with a depth that enhances wave magnification.

    Like an earthquake-generated tsunami, a meteotsunami affects the entire water column and can become dangerous when it hits shallow water, which causes it to slow down and increase in height and intensity. Even greater magnification can occur in semi-enclosed water bodies like harbors, inlets, and bays.

    Meteotsunamis are regional in nature. In the United States, conditions for destructive meteotsunamis are most favorable along the East Coast, Gulf of Mexico, and in the Great Lakes, where they may pose a greater threat than earthquake-generated tsunamis.

    As Weather Ready Nation Ambassadors, we strongly urge you to learn what to do before, during and after a tsunami that could save your life and the lives of your family and friends.

    Most of the things you need to do to prepare for a tsunami are basic disaster survival steps you should follow to prepare for the other hazards that may impact your community. Some actions, however, are unique to tsunamis since response time may be limited.

    Tsunami-Zone

    • Find out if your home, school, workplace or other frequently visited places are in tsunami hazard or evacuation zones and if your community has had tsunamis in the past. Your local emergency management office, your state's geologic or tsunami hazard website and your local National Weather Service Weather Forecast Office are good resources for information about your risk.
    • Find out if your community is TsunamiReady. Communities recognized by the National Weather Service as TsunamiReady are better prepared for tsunamis.

    There are two ways that you may be warned that a tsunami is coming: an official tsunami warning and a natural tsunami warning. Both are equally important. You may not get both. Be prepared to respond immediately to whatever you hear or see first.

    • An official tsunami warning will be broadcast through local radio and television, wireless emergency alerts, NOAA Weather Radio and NOAA websites (like Tsunami.gov). It may also come through outdoor sirens, local officials, text message alerts and telephone notifications.
    • There may not always be time to wait for an official tsunami warning. A natural tsunami warning may your first, best or only warning that a tsunami is on its way. Natural tsunami warnings include strong or long earthquakes, a loud roar (like a train or an airplane) from the ocean, and unusual ocean behavior. The ocean could look like a fast-rising flood or a wall of water. Or, it could drain away suddenly, showing the ocean floor, reefs and fish like a very low tide. If you experience any of these warnings, even just one, a tsunami could be coming.
    • Get a battery-operated NOAA Weather Radio to receive official alerts and other hazard information 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
    • Sign up for email and text message alerts from your local emergency management office and make sure your mobile devices are set to receive wireless emergency alerts.
    • Make an emergency plan and a family communication plan and put together a portable disaster supplies kit that is easily accessible and contains basic items you and your family may need in any emergency. Include your pets in all your preparedness efforts. Since you do not know where you will be when disaster strikes, prepare kits for work and your car, too.
    • Meet with your family to discuss the plan and why you need to prepare for a disaster.
    • Practice your plan and keep it up to date.
    • Be a role model. Share your knowledge and plans with friends and neighbors so they can prepare themselves and their loved ones.

    If your home, school, workplace or other frequently visited places are in tsunami hazard or evacuation zones, your emergency plan should include evacuation plans.

    • Find out from your local emergency management office if there are evacuation routes and assembly areas identified for your community and if a map is available.
    • If assembly areas are not identified, plan to evacuate to a safe place that is on high ground or inland (away from the coast) and outside the tsunami hazard or evacuation zone. You may need to identify more than one safe place, depending on where you may be when you get a tsunami warning (e.g., home, work, etc.). You should plan to be able to reach your safe place on foot if you can because of possible road damage, closed roads and traffic jams. If you are concerned that you will not be able to reach a safe place in time, ask your local emergency management office about vertical evacuation. Some strong (e.g., reinforced concrete) and tall buildings may be able to provide protection if no other options are available.
    • Map out evacuation routes to your safe place(s) from your home, workplace or any other place you visit often that is in a tsunami hazard or evacuation zone.
    • Practice walking your evacuation routes, including at night and in bad weather. Familiarity with the routes will make evacuation quicker and easier if you ever need to evacuate for real.
    • If you have children that go to school in a tsunami hazard or evacuation zone, find out about the school's plans for evacuating and keeping the children safe. Find out where the assembly area is and where you should pick up your children after the danger has passed.
    • If you are visiting an area at risk for a tsunami, find out about local tsunami safety. Your hotel or campground may be able to provide you with tsunami warning and evacuation information. It is important to know this information before a warning is issued. You may not have a lot of time after a warning. You do not want to waste it figuring out what to do.
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    Boat, Boating and Marine First Aid Kits. Life Boat Kits with waterproof packaging. Handy Soft pack boat first aid kits - Inner waterproof bags keep contents dry; reflective piping on outer bag makes the kit easy to find in the dark. The U.S. Coast Guard recommends these features for boating safety and marine vessels... Marine Safety means Safe Boating!
    We offer the most complete selections of Marine first aid kits & Boat first aid kits. Whether a part of your marine survival kit, or just to make sure you have everything on your marine first aid kit list, these boat emergency kits were designed with the marine first aid kit contents lists needed to meet marine first aid kit requirements.

    If you are on a boat and you get a tsunami warning, your response will depend on the size of the tsunami, the currents it produces, where you are, how much time you have before the first wave arrives and the weather at sea. If you are a boat owner or captain:

    • Make sure you have a way to receive tsunami warnings when you are on the water. The U.S. Coast Guard will issue urgent marine information broadcasts on your marine VHF radio's channel 16. Additional information will be available from NOAA Weather Radio.
    • Find out how to respond to a tsunami warning and what to do if you are at sea when a damaging tsunami strikes your coast. Your harbor master, port captain, the U.S. Coast Guard and local and state emergency management offices are the best sources for tsunami safety information and regulations for boaters in your area.
    • Make a plan and put together a disaster supplies kit to keep on board your boat. Be sure this includes a proper marine first aid kit. Be aware that shore facilities may be damaged, so if you are at sea during a tsunami, you may not be able to return to the harbor you left. Be prepared to remain at sea for a day or more.

    We are located in coastal San Diego, and see how silly and unprepared people can be - during tsunami warnings, we see many rushing to the water to watch, rather than away from the danger. During a tsunami, dangerous coastal flooding and powerful currents are possible and may continue for several hours or days after initial arrival. The first wave may not be the last or the largest. Follow directions and respond to tsunami warnings when given...

    How you respond to a tsunami warning depends on where you are and how you receive the warning. There are two types of tsunami warnings, official and natural. Both are equally important and suggest the potential for a tsunami that may cause widespread flooding. You may not get both types of warnings. Be prepared to respond to whatever you hear or see first. For your safety and others, always follow instructions from local officials.

    If you are outside of the tsunami hazard or evacuation zone and you receive an official or natural tsunami warning, a tsunami is possible or likely, but you are in a safe place. Stay where you are unless local officials tell you otherwise.

    Official Tsunami Warning

    If you are anywhere in a tsunami hazard or evacuation zone or a low-lying coastal area and you receive an official tsunami warning, a tsunami is likely. The warning will estimate the tsunami's arrival time, describe potential impacts and recommend actions to take.

    • Stay out of the water and away from beaches and waterways.
    • Get more information about the threat and what to do from NOAA Weather Radio, local radio or television or your mobile device (text or data). Limit nonemergency phone calls to keep the lines open for emergency communications.
    • If local officials ask you to evacuate, implement your emergency plan and move quickly to your safe place outside the hazard or evacuation zone unless officials tell you to go somewhere else. If you do not have a safe place or cannot reach it, follow evacuation signs to safety or go as high or as far inland (away from the water) as possible.

    Natural Tsunami Warning

    If you are in a tsunami hazard or evacuation zone or a low-lying coastal area and you feel a strong or long earthquake, the ocean acts strange (e.g., it looks like a fast-rising flood or a wall of water or it drains away suddenly, showing the ocean floor like a very low tide) OR there is a loud roar coming from the ocean, a tsunami is possible and could arrive within minutes.

    • In case of an earthquake, protect yourself. Drop, cover and hold on. Be prepared for aftershocks, which happen frequently after earthquakes. Each time the earth shakes, drop, cover and hold on.
    • Do not wait for an official tsunami warning or for instructions from local officials.
    • As soon as you can move safely, implement your emergency plan and move quickly to your safe place outside the hazard or evacuation zone. If you do not have a safe place or cannot reach it, follow evacuation signs to safety or go as high or as far inland (away from the water) as possible.
    • When you are in a safe place, get more information about the threat and what to do from NOAA Weather Radio, local radio or television or your mobile device (text or data). Limit nonemergency phone calls to keep the lines open for emergency communications.
    • If there is earthquake damage, avoid fallen power lines and stay away from buildings, bridges and piers because heavy objects may fall from them during an aftershock.
    • Follow instructions from local officials. It is their job to keep you safe.
    • Stay out of the tsunami hazard or evacuation zone until local officials tell you it is safe. The first wave may not be the last or the largest and the danger may last for hours or days.

    Note: If you are on the beach or near the water and feel an earthquake—no matter how big or how long it lasts—move quickly off the beach to high ground or inland (away from the water) as soon as you can do so safely.

  • Leap into Preparedness

    While there are certain times of year we focus on specific topics, such as burn safety, cpr & aed awareness, winter safety, wildfire safety, hurricane safety (you get the point) - and an extended campaign in September focusing on National preparedness, that doesn't mean you should be aware of hazards and the need to be prepared for them year-round.

    Don't wait until you are already at risk, today is an extra day,, leap day - use it to take stock of your own preparation needs and measures. Are your emergency supplies and first aid kits up to date and ready? Is your emergency action plan in place? Are you ready for whatever comes rolling or roiling your way?

    prepared-and-ready

  • Blackouts & Brownouts: Prepare for Power Outages

    Power Outages are the most common type of emergency, the can be very brief, or last for extended periods of time - but the location of a power outage can be as significant as the duration in judging the severity of the event in terms of a "Disaster."

    Perhaps you perceive these as unusual statements - let's explain:

    Blackout Emergency Kits Blackout Emergency Kits

    Brownouts (aka Brown Power) are when the voltage drops, causing dimming of lights and decreased power. These brownouts can occur through planned re-routing of electrical supply by the power companies, or by damage or complete outage elsewhere on the grid. While brown power isn't and emergency in of itself (although you should be concerned about the effect on sensitive electronic devices) one should consider brownouts as a warning of possible blackout.

    Although brownouts are not total power failures, they can adversely affect electrical equipment. Induction and three-phase electrical motors (like those used in industrial diesel generators) are especially at risk during a brownout, since they can overheat and their insulation can get damaged. If your main power supply is erratic and you experience frequent brownouts, you should consider investing in a backup power system that will automatically take over and provide your equipment with the necessary power when the voltage drops.

    Blackouts are the complete loss of electrical power, and are dangerous - many think, "So What?" well, think again... Aside from crime and traffic dangers in metropolitan areas, blackouts

    Blackouts can last for days, interrupting source of food, water, and warmth Blackouts can last for days, interrupting source of food, water, and warmth

    can cause serious health risks - especially for seniors and children. The biggest dangers of power outages are exposure to extreme temperatures (both heat and cold,) food poisoning (keep that food cold, or throw it out,) dangers of contaminated water supply, lack of sustenance (markets will be closed,) and physical injury - not just from stumbling around in the dark, but also many injuries occur when people try to operate equipment they are unfamiliar with (such as non--electrical heating devices and power generators.) The largest blackout in the US was in 2003, when a widespread power outage struck the Northeast leaving more than 50 million people without electricity. Power outages can happen anytime, so preparation is important. Since the length of an outage can vary from a few hours to several days, you should plan to get by without utilities for at least three days. Blackouts can happen any time.

    Both Brownouts and Blackouts are considered Power Outages, but while Brownouts can be seen as nuisances, or at worst, warning of more to come, Blackouts are a genuine emergency situation.

    While Power Outages are very common, being caused through technical and human errors as well as occurring with either localized or wide-spread effects as a result of most other disasters, their impact can vary in seriousness more by locale than by duration.

    In rural areas, homes and businesses are better equipped for power outages. In these areas, generators are more common, food and water sources are more readily available, and individuals are more often accustomed to life without automation.

    In metropolitan areas, not only is crime a concern when the power fails, but traffic snarls, food and water supplies become unsafe or unavailable, gas pumps cannot pump, families cannot reach one another physically or via regular electronic communication methods, and emergency services become overwhelmed and unable to assist.

    While a rural community can often fair well with a power outage of many days, even just a few hours without electricity can wreak havoc in a city.

    6 Tips to Prepare for Blackouts

    1. Follow energy conservation measures to keep the use of electricity as low as possible, which can help power companies avoid imposing rolling blackouts.

    2. Fill plastic containers with water and place them in the refrigerator and freezer if there's room. Leave about an inch of space inside each one, because water expands as it freezes. Chilled or frozen water will help keep food cold during a temporary power outage, by displacing air that can warm up quickly with water or ice that keeps cold for several hours without additional refrigeration.

    3. Be aware that most medication that requires refrigeration can be kept in a closed refrigerator for several hours without a problem. If unsure, check with your physician or pharmacist.

    4. Keep your car tank at least half full because gas stations rely on electricity to power their pumps.

    5. Know where the manual release lever of your electric garage door opener is located and how to operate it. Garage doors can be heavy, so know that you may need help to lift it.

    6. Keep a key to your house with you if you regularly use the garage as the primary means of entering your home, in case the garage door will not open.

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