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Emergency Preparedness

  • Youth Saving Tomorrow

    Learn about a great opportunity to develop an emergency management career. FEMA Corps is an AmeriCorps service program where teams of young adults from 18-24 receive FEMA training, equipment, and deploy on assignments across the country. Members work alongside FEMA staff to support disaster response, recovery, and preparedness.

    FEMA Corps: A Pathway to an Emergency Management Career

    Webinar Direct link to join webinar: https://fema.connectsolutions.com/r2ds8o04rca/

    March 14, 2017                 3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. EST

    FEMA-Corps

  • Carbon Monoxide (CO) Poisoning Prevention

    We've shared information about Carbon Monoxide poisoning while discussing Smoke Alarms as well as Preparing for Winter Weather and how Winter storms and cold temperatures can be hazardous... But did you know that when power outages occur after severe weather (such as winter storms, hurricanes or tornadoes), using alternative sources of power can cause carbon monoxide (CO) to build up in a home and poison the people and animals inside?

    copoisoning_456pxHow to Recognize CO Poisoning

    The most common symptoms of CO poisoning are headache, dizziness, weakness, nausea, vomiting, chest pain, and confusion. People who are sleeping or who have been drinking alcohol can die from CO poisoning before ever having symptoms.

    CO Poisoning Prevention Tips

    • Never use a gas range or oven to heat a home.
    • Never leave the motor running in a vehicle parked in an enclosed or partially enclosed space, such as a garage.
    • Never run a generator, pressure washer, or any gasoline-powered engine inside a basement, garage, or other enclosed structure, even if the doors or windows are open, unless the equipment is professionally installed and vented. Keep vents and flues free of debris, especially if winds are high. Flying debris can block ventilation lines.
    • Never run a motor vehicle, generator, pressure washer, or any gasoline-powered engine less than 20 feet from an open window, door, or vent where exhaust can vent into an enclosed area.
    • Never use a charcoal grill, hibachi, lantern, or portable camping stove inside a home, tent, or camper.
    • If conditions are too hot or too cold, seek shelter with friends or at a community shelter.
    • If CO poisoning is suspected, consult a health care professional right away.

    CO poisoning is entirely preventable. You can protect yourself and your family by acting wisely in case of a power outage and learning the symptoms of CO poisoning.

    For more information, please visit the Carbon Monoxide Poisoning website.

  • Recognize Frostbite

    We share a bit about Frostbite last year and want to remind all that it is a danger this time of year.

    Don’t let Jack Frost nip at your nose. Protect yourself from frostbite with information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

    thermometer

    Frostbite is an injury caused by freezing. It most often affects the nose, ears, cheeks, chin, fingers, or toes. Frostbite can permanently damage the body and severe cases can lead to amputation. The risk of frostbite is increased in people with reduced blood circulation and among people who are not dressed properly for extremely cold temperatures.

    At the first signs of redness or pain in any skin area, get out of the cold or protect any exposed skin—frostbite may be beginning. Any of the following signs may indicate frostbite:

    • White or grayish-yellow skin area.
    • Skin that feels unusually firm or waxy.
    • Numbness.

    As soon as you detect the symptoms of frostbite, seek medical care. If immediate medical care is not available, proceed as follows:

    • Get into a warm room as soon as possible.
    • Don’t rub the frostbitten area with snow or massage it at all. This can cause more damage.
    • Unless absolutely necessary, do not walk on frostbitten feet or toes as this increases the damage.
    • Immerse the affected area in warm—not hot—water (the temperature should be comfortable to the touch for unaffected parts of the body).
    • Don’t use a heating pad, heat lamp, or the heat of a stove, fireplace, or radiator for warming. Affected areas are numb and can be easily burned.

    Taking preventive action is your best defense against having to deal with extreme cold-weather conditions. For more information on frostbite, visit the CDC’s Frostbite page.

    Also read:

    Cold Stress & Related Illness and How can cold stress be prevented?

  • EMERGENCY SURVIVAL KITS

    Disaster-Survival-PreparednessWhen a disaster or urgent emergency occurs, being able to survive where you are or needing to bug out is the first big decision that needs to be made. We have a line of Emergency Survival Kits to fully cover these tasks. Whether it is a simple blackout, a classroom lockdown, fire, or flooding, we have all types of kits to cover you in these situations. These include Survival Mini Packs, Honey Buckets for Classroom Lockdowns, Basic, Deluxe and Elite Survivals kits that depend on your needs and Survival Kits that are focused on Long term Food Storage. With brands like Guardian, you know whichever kit, bugout bag, or food storage kit you choose, your supplies will be of the highest quality. Always be prepared!

    We know that not everyone is the same, no two disasters are the same nor are your personal needs the same. The most important thing when choosing a survival kit is what fits for you and your environment, what disasters you can expect and if it needs to be fully portable. There are mini kits out there including our line of Classroom Lockdown kits, Survival "mini" Kits, Vehicle Kits, and Military-type survival kits. You wouldn't want to have a mini kit for a Classroom lockdown kit as the Mini's only support 1-2 two people at the most - you would need a Lockdown kit to use for 30 people. At the same time you would want to have a Bucket Survival kit as a "bug-out" bag if you needed to get out of Dodge as quickly as you can. Make sure you choose the correct Survival kit for your needs. The most important thing though is to be prepared no matter what!

  • 3 Ways You Can Use Smartwatches to Keep You Safe

    Smartwatches are becoming the next must-have gadget. You can receive notifications, answer calls, connect to your smart devices, track your fitness, listen to music and navigate your area. Smartwatches are reliable and easily accessible, which also makes them more useful than smartphones in dangerous situations. Let's take a closer look at the features that help keep you safe.

    Panic Button

    "Emergency Panic Button" is an app that you can install on your smartwatch that allows you to contact family, friends and emergency numbers in the case of an emergency situation. After a quick update to your contacts list, a simple press of a button uses your GPS to send your location to those listed. It automatically calls the person at the top of your list and provides a home screen or lock screen widget. Don't worry if your GPS isn't turned on, either — the app does so automatically once you press the panic button. This app also gives you the option of linking to social media platforms.

    If you're feeling nervous because your kids are late or a friend isn't answering her calls, you can send a location request with the app to set your mind at ease.

    Alerts

    The great thing about a smartwatch is that it's hard to lose since it's attached to your body. This means you're less likely to miss alerts and notifications. Be proactive about your safety by signing up to receive alerts on your smartwatch. You can sign up for a wide variety of alerts on social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter, download the FREE FEMA app, or you can download apps like the "Amber Alert" app or those related to places you visit frequently, such as a school campus or your neighborhood. With these alerts, you know that you'll be aware of your surroundings and any potential danger there.

    Voice-Activated Calls and Messages

    Texting or typing out a full telephone number and message takes time. You also might make errors or click on the wrong contact, causing even further delay. Smartwatches enable you to vocalize a message or use voice commands to make a call. This may increase your safety in certain situations, such as when you're driving or trying to quickly call for help.

    The speed and accuracy of voice commands make it a reliable method of communication when time is of the essence. In addition to having voice commands, many new devices have preset texts you can send instantly, clear audio to avoid confusion and a battery that lasts two to three days. The Apple Watch also lets you use Siri to complete tasks and use the voice command features.

    Due to their wearability, small size and various features, smartwatches are well suited for keeping you safe. Make use of these features in your day-to-day life so you know how to use them if you ever need to. Stay alert of your surroundings and stay up to date with the latest safety apps and features to ensure your security at any time, any place.

    SmartWatch

  • Is That Safe to Eat?

    We've talked about Power Outages in the past ( What is the most common emergency? ) But have you considered how  Power outages can jeopardize the safety of the food stored in your home refrigerator or freezer. If you lose electricity, do you know how to determine if your food is safe to eat? The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) offers tips to follow before and after a power outage to minimize loss of food and lower the risk of foodborne illness:

    • Gather an emergency food supply of shelf-stable food, boxed or canned milk, bottled water, and canned goods;
    • Have coolers and frozen gel packs on hand to keep refrigerated food cold if the power goes out longer than four hours;
    • Buy an appliance thermometer for the refrigerator and freezer and a food thermometer to help you know if the food has stayed at a safe temperature during an outage;
    • Throw out any perishable food items such as meat, poultry, fish, eggs, and leftovers that have been exposed to temperatures above 40 degrees Fahrenheit for more than two hours;
    • Use a food thermometer to test the temperature of food – never taste it!  You can’t rely on appearance and odor to determine whether food is safe; and
    • Discard any items in the refrigerator that have come into contact with raw meat juices.

    Keep in mind that your refrigerator will keep food cold safely for about four hours if it is unopened. A full freezer will hold the temperature for approximately 48 hours (24 hours if it is half full) if the door remains closed.

    food-safety-power-outageDid you know that a flood or fire can also impact the safety of food in your home? Be sure to check out the FAQs on the USDA website about keeping food safe after these emergencies.

  • The Temperature is rising - EVERYWHERE

    FEMA is warning of extreme heat emergencies - we all know it is coming! If you are reading this pretty much anywhere in the U.S. right now, one thing is certain: it is hot and it's getting hotter.
    How hot you ask? A new interactive infographic from Climate Central has compiled a list of the hottest cities in the U.S. First place goes to Miami, FL (no surprise there). In third place is Phoenix, AZ and in fourteenth and fifteenth place are Houston, TX and New Orleans, LA. Las Vegas, NV is seventeenth. Looking to beat the heat? Climate Central predicts the Pacific
    Northwest is likely your best bet!

    Learn about: Dehydration & Staying Hydrated, warning about Summer Heat

  • Escape?

    A Plan of Escape if there is a Fire in Your Home...

    We've talked about evacuation before, as well as Emergency Planning and Evacuation Procedures for businesses, but what is the plan at home?

    evacuation - 2-ways-outIf a fire starts in your home, you may have only one to two minutes to escape. Your ability to get out safely depends on having working smoke alarms and planning ahead.

    The U.S. Fire Administration has tips for creating a fire escape plan:

    • Walk through your home, and identify two ways out of each room. Make sure everyone in your home can escape from both ways. This will help them prepare in case one way is blocked by fire.
    • Choose a meeting place outside in front of your home. This is where everyone can meet once they’ve escaped and where firefighters can see you and know you are out.
    • Sound the smoke alarm, and practice your escape drill with everyone in your home.

    Get more information about fire escape planning on the U.S. Fire Administration website. You’ll find videos, flyers, and other resources to share with family and friends. Many of the resources are available in English and Spanish.

    When dealing with a fire, you want to deal with two parts. Try to extinguish it and/or evacuate and get the heck out of Dodge. We all have supplies you need to not only prepare for a fire, like extinguishers, fire ladders and even document bags but also evacuate from the danger, like using a fire axe, fire retardant blanket or our Xcaper fire masks for dealing with the smoke thick and toxic smoke. We are your one-stop shop for emergency fire and evacuation supplies!

    An emergency action plan is a written document required by particular OSHA standards (29 CFR 1910.38). The purpose of an EAP is to facilitate and organize employer and employee actions during workplace emergencies. Well-developed emergency plans and proper employee training (such that employees understand their roles and responsibilities within the plan) will result in fewer and less severe employee injuries and less structural damage to the facility during emergencies and evacuations A poorly prepared plan likely will lead to a disorganized evacuation or emergency response, resulting in confusion, injury, and property damage.

  • Benefits of Adding an Emergency Safe Room

    Safe rooms have been around since the ancient Egyptians but became popularized in modern society after the movie "Panic Room", starring Jodie Foster, was released in 2002.

    Basically, a safe room is fortified space within a home or other structure that is used to secure people in the event of an emergency. There are a variety of benefits that are related to adding a safe room to your home or residence and we will go over a few.bunker

    Security

    Many people opt to have a safe room as a place to hide securely from intruders with criminal intent. Burglary is a common crime and is often associated with assault or the loss of life if the criminal happens to be interrupted or if they find people in the home. Sometimes, injury occurs purely out of panic.

    Having a safe and secure place where family can hide from intruders protects them against harm. Safe rooms are also effective in preventing the following crimes:

    - Kidnapping or abduction
    - Intent to commit murder
    - Assault

    Secure Belongings

    Safe rooms are generally larger than ordinary safes for securing valuable belongings and this makes them an ideal location for storing and protecting larger items of value from theft.

    Natural Disasters

    Tornadoes can have devastating effects and a safe room can be designed to weather this natural disaster to prevent harm and loss of life. The secure room can also be helpful in the case of some other natural disasters like hurricanes, earthquakes, fire and flood but only when it has been specifically designed to withstand these events. You must be careful if your safe room is not built to withstand a flood. Hurricanes often produce flooding so be sure that your safe room will protect you if one should occur.

    A Fallout Shelter

    In the event of nuclear, biological or chemical attack, a safe room can be the first place of refuge. If contained underground and equipped with a ventilation system, it can be a long term means of survival after these types of attack. However, water and air filtration systems are essential for safe rooms that are designed to function as fallout shelters.

    Features To Consider Adding To A Safe Room

    A basic safe room is similar to a steel safe to keep your belongings and is designed to hold a limited amount of people for a short period of time. Adding features and enlarging the space can provide greater security for longer periods of time, as well as, enhance the versatility of the structure. Additional features include:

    - Storage for food and water, as well as items such as blankets, first aid kit and any other necessary supplies
    - Communication devices such as a cellphone, land line or radio to make distress calls
    - A power outlet
    - Air and water filtration systems
    - Ablution equipment or facilities
    - Cooking equipment
    - Mattresses, cots or bunk-beds
    - Any other items that may be determined as essential

    In the event of a crisis, disaster or emergency, you need a safe place to go. You may want to seriously consider the addition of a safe house in your home, especially if your home has no basement and you live in an area that has frequent tornadoes.


    Ross Germano is a self-defense and security enthusiast. You can check out his site, RevereSecurity.com for great information about self-defense and security, as well as the best in security products.

  • Motor Vehicle Crash Deaths

    CPR, our primary focus, and First Aid, our secondary come into play all-too-frequently in the case of roadside emergencies.

    While we want everyone to know what to do when needed, we would prefer to have less need.

    Buckle Up. Drive Sober. Slow Down.

    Reducing motor vehicle crash deaths was one of the great public health achievements of the 20th century for the US. However, more than 32,000 people are killed and 2 million are injured each year from motor vehicle crashes. In 2013, the US crash death rate was more than twice the average of other high-income countries.

    Download the free Fact Sheet Download the free Fact Sheet

    Key points include:

    • About 90 people die each day in the US from crashes — resulting in the highest death rate among comparison countries.
    • US crash deaths fell 31% compared to an average 56% in 19 other high income countries from 2000-2013.

    Over 18,000 lives could be saved each year if US crash deaths equaled the average rate of 19 other high-income countries.

    Backing up & Driving Tips

    Auto-EmergencyBe prepared wherever you travel to, in whatever automobile with our line of Vehicle First Aid and Emergency kits. Each of these kits are stocked with first aid supplies and products to help deal with any other issues such as fixing flat tires or survival materials to endure being stuck in a snowstorm. We have soft sided, and hard case automobile/vehicle first aid kits designed to fit in spaces in any vehicle. With brands such as AAA, First Aid Only, and Mayday, you know the first aid kits and road emergency packs are top of their class and comprehensive in their supply choices.

    Having one of our top notch Vehicle first aid and survival kits guarantees you the basics plus more for you to use in case you are stranded on the side of the road. Not all kits carry everything. Here is a list of items that may or may not be included in an Vehicle Kit but are still very important:

    • Charged cell phone. Although this item will probably be on your person, it may make the difference between getting help fast and maybe not getting help at all.
    • Fire Extinguisher. It should be rated for Class B and Class C fires by the National Fire Protection Association, or NFPA. The NFPA says Class B fires are those that involve flammable or combustible liquids, such as gasoline, diesel fuel and kerosene. Class C fires involve energized electrical equipment such as switches, panel boxes and batteries.
    • Three reflective warning triangles. While many prepackaged emergency kits contain one warning triangle, Crosby suggests you have three that are placed 50 feet apart to warn oncoming traffic.
    • Tire gauge. Crosby says motorists should use the tire gauge in their car emergency kit to periodically check the air pressure in their spare tire. Besides these there are a handful more products you may want to have such tow strap/rope, duct tape, etc. You can never be over prepared!

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