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Frostbite is an injury caused by freezing of the skin and underlying tissues. First your skin becomes very cold and red, then numb, hard and pale. Frostbite is most common on the fingers, toes, nose, ears, cheeks and chin. Exposed skin in cold, windy weather is most vulnerable to frostbite. But frostbite can occur on skin covered by gloves or other clothing.
Frostnip, the first stage of frostbite, doesn’t cause permanent skin damage. You can treat very mild frostbite with first-aid measures, including rewarming your skin. All other frostbite requires medical attention because it can damage skin, tissues, muscle and bones. Possible complications of severe frostbite include infection and nerve damage.
Stages of frostbite
Signs and symptoms of frostbite include:
At first, cold skin and a prickling feeling
Red, white, bluish-white or grayish-yellow skin
Hard or waxy-looking skin
Clumsiness due to joint and muscle stiffness
Blistering after rewarming, in severe cases
Frostbite is most common on the fingers, toes, nose, ears, cheeks and chin. Because of skin numbness, you may not realize you have frostbite until someone else points it out.
Frostbite occurs in several stages:
Frostnip. The first stage of frostbite is frostnip. With this mild form of frostbite, your skin pales or turns red and feels very cold. Continued exposure leads to prickling and numbness in the affected area. As your skin warms, you may feel pain and tingling. Frostnip doesn’t permanently damage the skin.
Superficial frostbite. The second stage of frostbite appears as reddened skin that turns white or pale. The skin may remain soft, but some ice crystals may form in the tissue. Your skin may begin to feel warm — a sign of serious skin involvement. If you treat frostbite with rewarming at this stage, the surface of your skin may appear mottled, blue or purple. And you may notice stinging, burning and swelling. A fluid-filled blister may appear 24 to 36 hours after rewarming the skin.
Severe (deep) frostbite. As frostbite progresses, it affects all layers of the skin, including the tissues that lie below. You may experience numbness, losing all sensation of cold, pain or discomfort in the affected area. Joints or muscles may no longer work. Large blisters form 24 to 48 hours after rewarming. Afterward, the area turns black and hard as the tissue dies.
When to see a doctor
Seek medical attention for frostbite if you experience:
Signs and symptoms of superficial or deep frostbite — such as white or pale skin, numbness, or blisters
Increased pain, swelling, redness or discharge in the area that was frostbitten
New, unexplained symptoms
Get emergency medical help if you suspect hypothermia, a condition in which your body loses heat faster than it can be produced. Signs and symptoms of hypothermia include:
Drowsiness and loss of coordination
Floods are among the most frequent and costly natural disasters. Flooding often occurs following a hurricane, thawing snow, or several days of sustained rain. Flash floods occur suddenly, due to rapidly rising water along a stream or low-lying area. Learn what to do to keep your loved ones safe!
Know the Difference!
A flood/flash flood WATCH means a flood or flash flood is possible.
A flood/flash flood WARNING means flooding or flash flooding is already occurring or will occur soon. TAKE IMMEDIATE PRECAUTIONS!
How to Prepare Before a Flood
Protecting Your Family
Talk with your family about what to do if a flood watch or warning is issued. Discussing floods ahead of time helps reduce fear, especially for younger children.
Ensure that every member of your family carries a Safe and Well wallet card.
Make sure you have access to NOAA radio broadcasts:
Find an online NOAA radio station
Search for a NOAA radio app in the Apple Store or Google Play
Purchase a battery-powered or hand-crank NOAA radio in the Red Cross Store
Find out if you are located in a floodplain, which is considered a Special Flood Hazard Area. If so, you are still eligible for flood insurance. Check with your city or county government (start with the Building or Planning Department) to review the Flood Insurance Rate Maps, published by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
Find out if local streams or rivers flood easily.
Keep insurance policies, documents, and other valuables in a safe-deposit box. You may need quick, easy access to these documents. Keep them in a safe place less likely to be damaged during a flood. Take pictures on a phone and keep copies of important documents and files on a flashdrive that you can carry with you on your house or car keys.
How Wind Fans Flames Into ‘Firenadoes’
A fire tornado or “firenado” can form when a wildfire makes the air super hot and it rises very quickly, pulling in winds to create a rapidly spinning twister made of fire. Also called a firewhirl, it may look like a column of fire or it may be a whirlwind apart from the flames.
According to Weather.com, a very strong wildfire can create a “pyrocumulus cloud,” which looks like a thunderstorm cloud. If the cloud has enough updraft, a relatively small firewhirl can grow big enough to look like a regular tornado. These flaming storms can fuel dangerous high-speed winds, cause ashes to start burning again, and spread fiery debris over long distances.
The National Oceanic Administration Association (NOAA) has said that fire tornadoes are rare, but in recent years more people have been capturing them on camera.
Wildfires and strong winds in the state of Sao Paulo, Brazil, created a firenado that stopped traffic on a local highway in August 2010. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ssn2kmNf0ME
TV cameraman Chris Tangey filmed a 90-foot-tall firewhirl at a cattle station in Northern Territory, Australia, in September 2012. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lsyvOYcWgcg
A firefighter made a video of a massive firenado that developed in August 2013 during the Tetlin Junction Ridge Fire in Alaska, where an unusually hot summer made fire season even more dangerous. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lh67J4TNPK
A photographer took a shot of a firewhirl rising in May 2014 while a farmer burned his field in Chillicothe, Missouri. http://www.weather.com/photos/photo-details/fire-twister_4624c0a8-c264-4d9a-a2c5-46b5d156eda0–db04bc18-ee64-11e2-9ee2-001d092f5a10
Scientists are just beginning to understand more about this phenomenon, but fire tornadoes aren’t exactly new. A really bad one happened after the 1923 Great Kanto earthquake in Japan, when a huge firestorm created a massive firewhirl that killed 38,000 Tokyo residents in about 15 minutes, according to Smithsonian Magazine. A few years later in California, a series of firewhirls after a lightning-induced firestorm caused a lot of property damage and killed two people.
Teaching your child where rain comes from.
How they form.
Disaster preparedness Kit Review
Cold Temperature Exposure – Topic Overview
It’s easy to get cold quickly if you are outside in wet, windy, or cold weather. Cold temperature exposure can also happen if you spend time in a dwelling or other building that is not well heated during cold weather.
“Frostnip” usually affects skin on the face, ears, or fingertips. Frostnip may cause numbness or blue-white skin color for a short time, but normal feeling and color return quickly when you get warm. No permanent tissue damage occurs.
Frostbite is freezing of the skin and the tissues under the skin because of temperatures below freezing. Frostbitten skin looks pale or blue and feels cold, numb, and stiff or rubbery to the touch.
Cold injuries, such as trench foot or chilblains, may cause pale and blistered skin like frostbite after the skin has warmed. These injuries occur from spending too much time in cold, but not freezing, temperatures. The skin does not actually freeze.
Eye pain or vision changes caused by cold exposure most often occur in individuals who try to force their eyes open in high winds, cold weather, or during activities such as snowmobiling or cross-country skiing. Snow blindness is not directly caused by cold temperatures but does occur in snow conditions. Sunlight reflecting off the snow can cause a corneal injury or burn. Eyelids may become red and swollen. Eyes may feel dry and as though they have sand in them.
An abnormally low body temperature (hypothermia) occurs when the body loses heat faster than it can make heat. (There may be other reasons a person has a low body temperature. For more information, see the topic Body Temperature.) Early symptoms of hypothermia include shivering in adults and older children; clumsy movements; apathy (lack of concern); poor judgment; and cold, pale, or blue-gray skin. Hypothermia is an emergency condition-it can quickly lead to unconsciousness and death if the heat loss is not stopped.
There are many factors that increase your risk of injury from exposure to cold temperatures.
Being a baby
Being an older adult
Being in outdoor conditions, such as high altitudes or windy, wet weather, or being immersed in cold water
Not being dressed properly, having wet skin, or wearing wet clothing
Being tired or dehydrated
Being exposed to cold temperatures in your workplace, such as working in cold-storage units
Having certain health risks
10 Things to keep in your Vehicle for Winter Driving.
Winter Safety: Walk Like a Penguin
Road Safety Rules for kids
Driving in Icy Conditions
American Read Cross
Winter storms can range from a moderate snow over a few hours to a blizzard with blinding, wind-driven snow that lasts for several days. Some winter storms are large enough to affect several states, while others affect only a single community. Many winter storms are accompanied by dangerously low temperatures and sometimes by strong winds, icing, sleet and freezing rain.
Regardless of the severity of a winter storm, you should be prepared in order to remain safe during these events.
Know the Difference
Winter Storm Outlook – Winter storm conditions are possible in the next 2 to 5 days.
Winter Weather Advisory – Winter weather conditions are expected to cause significant inconveniences and may be hazardous. When caution is used, these situations should not be life threatening.
Winter Storm Watch – Winter storm conditions are possible within the next 36 to 48 hours. People in a watch area should review their winter storm plans and stay informed about weather conditions.
Winter Storm Warning – Life-threatening, severe winter conditions have begun or will begin within 24 hours. People in a warning area should take precautions immediately.
How to Prepare for a Winter Storm
Winterize your vehicle and keep the gas tank full. A full tank will keep the fuel line from freezing.
Insulate your home by installing storm windows or covering windows with plastic from the inside to keep cold air out.
Maintain heating equipment and chimneys by having them cleaned and inspected every year.
If you will be going away during cold weather, leave the heat on in your home, set to a temperature no lower than 55° F.
Put Together a Supply Kit
Water—at least a 3-day supply; one gallon per person per day
Food—at least a 3-day supply of non-perishable, easy-to-prepare food
Flashlight [Available on the Red Cross Store]
Battery-powered or hand-crank radio (NOAA Weather Radio, if possible) [Available on the Red Cross Store]
First aid kit [Available on the Red Cross Store]
Medications (7-day supply) and medical items (hearing aids with extra batteries, glasses, contact lenses, syringes, etc.)
Sanitation and personal hygiene items
Copies of personal documents (medication list and pertinent medical information, proof of address, deed/lease to home, passports, birth certificates, insurance policies)
Cell phone with chargers
Family and emergency contact information
Baby supplies (bottles, formula, baby food, diapers)
Pet supplies (collar, leash, ID, food, carrier, bowl)
Tools/supplies for securing your home
Sand, rock salt or non-clumping kitty litter to make walkways and steps less slippery
Warm coats, gloves or mittens, hats, boots and extra blankets and warm clothing for all household members
Ample alternate heating methods such as fireplaces or wood- or coal-burning stoves
Remaining Safe During a Winter Storm
Listen to a NOAA Weather Radio or other local news channels for critical information on snow storms and blizzards from the National Weather Service (NWS).
Bring pets/companion animals inside during winter weather. Move other animals or livestock to sheltered areas and make sure that their access to food and water is not blocked by snow drifts, ice or other obstacles.
Running water, even at a trickle, helps prevent pipes from freezing.
All fuel-burning equipment should be vented to the outside and kept clear.
Keep garage doors closed if there are water supply lines in the garage.
Open kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors to allow warmer air to circulate around the plumbing. Be sure to move any harmful cleaners and household chemicals up out of the reach of children.
Keep the thermostat set to the same temperature both during the day and at night. By temporarily suspending the use of lower nighttime temperatures, you may incur a higher heating bill, but you can prevent a much more costly repair job if pipes freeze and burst.
Go to a designated public shelter if your home loses power or heat during periods of extreme cold.
Avoid driving when conditions include sleet, freezing rain or drizzle, snow or dense fog. If travel is necessary, keep a disaster supplies kit in your vehicle.
Before tackling strenuous tasks in cold temperatures, consider your physical condition, the weather factors and the nature of the task.
Protect yourself from frostbite and hypothermia by wearing warm, loose-fitting, lightweight clothing in several layers. Stay indoors, if possible.
Help people who require special assistance such as elderly people living alone, people with disabilities and children.
Caution: Carbon Monoxide Kills
Never use a generator, grill, camp stove or other gasoline, propane, natural gas or charcoal-burning devices inside a home, garage, basement, crawlspace or any partially enclosed area. Locate unit away from doors, windows and vents that could allow carbon monoxide to come indoors.
The primary hazards to avoid when using alternate sources for electricity, heating or cooking are carbon monoxide poisoning, electric shock and fire.
Install carbon monoxide alarms in central locations on every level of your home and outside sleeping areas to provide early warning of accumulating carbon monoxide.
If the carbon monoxide alarm sounds, move quickly to a fresh air location outdoors or by an open window or door.
Call for help from the fresh air location and remain there until emergency personnel arrive to assist you.
Frostbite and hypothermia are two dangerous and potentially life-threatening emergencies. Learn how to care for these emergencies by taking a first aid class.
All thunderstorms produce lightning and are dangerous. If you hear the sound of thunder, then you are in danger from lightning. Lightning kills between 75 to 100 people each year and being outdoors in the most dangerous place to be. Always listen to the radio and television for the latest information and instructions for your area.
A THUNDERSTORM WATCH means a thunderstorm is possible for your area.
A THUNDERSTORM WARNING means a thunderstorm is taking place in your area.
IF YOU’RE OUTDOORS:
Keep an eye at the sky. Look for darkening skies, flashes of lightning, or increasing winds. Lightning often proceeds rain, so don’t wait for the rain to begin. If you hear the sound of thunder, go to a safe place immediately.
The best place to go is a sturdy building or a car, but make sure the windows in the car are shut. Avoid sheds, picnic areas, baseball dugouts and bleachers.
If there is no shelter around you, stay away from trees. Crouch down in the open area, keeping twice as far away from a tree as far as it is tall. Put your feet together and place your hands over your ears to minimize hearing damage from thunder.
If you’re with a group of people stay about 15 feet from each other.
Stay out of water. It’s a great conductor of electricity. Swimming, wading, snorkeling and scuba diving are not safe. Also, don’t stand in puddles.
Avoid metal. Stay away from clotheslines, fences, and drop your backpacks because they often have metal on them.
If you’re playing an outdoor activity, wait at least 30 minutes after the last observed lightning strike or thunder.
IF YOU’RE INDOORS:
Avoid water. It’s a great conductor of electricity, so do not take a shower, wash your hands, wash dishes or do laundry.
Do not use a corded telephone. Lightning may strike exterior phone lines.
Do not use electric equipment like computers and appliances during a storm.
Stay away from windows and doors, and stay off porches.
IF SOMEONE IS STRUCK BY LIGHTNING:
Call for help. Call 9-1-1 or send for help immediately.
The injured person does not carry an electrical charge, so it is okay to touch them.
How can I prevent the spread of the flu?
Measures you can take to help during flu season.
1. Talk to your doctor. Get professional advice if you are at risk for complications from flu.
2. Wash your hands frequently. Flu viruses are spread by droplets from infected people when they sneeze, blow their nose, or wipe away secretions from their nose or eyes. During flu season, everyone should be encouraged to keep their hands out of their mouths, avoid rubbing their eyes and wash their hands thoroughly several times a day, especially before meals.
3. Eat a healthy diet rich in vitamins C and E. Foods containing these vitamins are believed to be helpful in supporting the immune system. Foods rich in vitamin E include sunflower and corn oils, sunflower seeds, and nuts such as almonds and peanuts. You can get your daily vitamin C from foods like orange juice, citrus fruits, broccoli and green peppers. And make an effort to reduce your intake of concentrated sugar (e.g. soda, candy) because excessive sugar impairs the immune response.
4. Get a good night’s sleep. Lack of sleep may profoundly inhibit your immune system. Get a full night’s sleep to keep your body’s natural defenses at optimum efficiency.
5. Stay hydrated. Increasing your water intake will help you stay healthy and lessen the chance of you coming down with flu. When you are feeling under the weather, drinking extra fluids prevents dehydration caused by fever, loosens mucus, and keeps your throat moist. Warm liquids are preferable, and there is some evidence that inhaling steam early in the course of a cold or flu may reduce the spread of viruses in your upper respiratory tract.
6. Keep Oscillococcinum® readily available. Oscillococcinum (Oscillo®), one of the world’s most popular natural flu medicines, can reduce the duration and severity of flu-like symptoms when taken at the onset of symptoms. Its use is supported by published clinical studies, as well as more than 65 years of use throughout the world. Plus, unlike other flu medicines, Oscillo does not cause drowsiness, it does not interfere with other medications, and it is recommended for both adults and children ages 2 and up.
7. Exercise regularly. Not only can regular exercise lower stress, but research indicates that exercise can stimulate the immune system and promote healthy sleep. In a recent study reported in Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, scientists found that modest exercise may prevent the elderly from getting colds and flu.
8. Listen to your body. If you do come down with a cold or flu, take it easy. Spending excessive energy steals valuable resources from the immune system. Even attempting to perform normal activities at work or school may be too much. Besides, if you believe you’re coming down with flu, probably the best thing you can do for friends and family is to not expose them unnecessarily to the virus.
9. Seek help if you get worse. If your symptoms become significantly worse after the first three days of illness, especially if your fever subsides and then returns, be sure to seek medical attention right away. The reason that flu is considered a potentially dangerous infection is that it leaves the body vulnerable to other infections like pneumonia.
Be Prepared: Before, During and After an Earthquake
Do you know how to prepare for and survive a major earthquake? According to Department of Conservation scientists, it will be critical to have the right answer to that question somewhere in California sometime in the coming years.
Many people think having bottled water on hand is a good idea. That’s true, as long as you have enough. Many are certain that standing in a doorway during the shaking is a good idea. That’s false, unless you live in an unreinforced abode structure; otherwise, you’re more likely to be hurt by the door swinging wildly in a doorway or trampled by people trying to hurry outside if you’re in a public place.
How to be Prepared
Electricity, water, gas and telephones may not be working after an earthquake. The police and fire departments are likely to be tied up. You should be prepared to fend for yourself for at least three days, preferably for a week.
You’ll need food and water (a gallon a day per person); a first aid kit; a fire extinguisher suitable for all types of fires; flashlights; a portable radio; extra batteries, blankets, clothes, shoes and money (ATMs may not work); medication; an adjustable or pipe wrench to turn off gas or water, if necessary; baby and pet food; and an alternate cooking source (barbecue or camp stove). This list can also be applied to other disasters, such as floods or wildfires.
It’s also a good idea to decide beforehand how and where your family will reunite if separated during a quake and to conduct in-home practice drills. You might choose an out-of-the-area friend or relative that family members can call to check on you.
Securing water heaters, major appliances and tall, heavy furniture to prevent them from toppling are prudent steps. So, too, are storing hazardous or flammable liquids, heavy objects and breakables on low shelves or in secure cabinets.
Discuss earthquake insurance with your agent. Depending on your financial situation and the value of your home, it may be worthwhile.
During an Earthquake
If you’re indoors, stay there. Get under — and hold onto –a desk or table, or stand against an interior wall. Stay clear of exterior walls, glass, heavy furniture, fireplaces and appliances. The kitchen is a particularly dangerous spot. If you’re in an office building, stay away from windows and outside walls and do not use the elevator.
If you’re outside, get into the open. Stay clear of buildings, power lines or anything else that could fall on you.
If you’re driving, move the car out of traffic and stop. Avoid parking under or on bridges or overpasses. Try to get clear of trees, light posts, signs and power lines. When you resume driving, watch out for road hazards.
If you’re in a mountainous area, beware of the potential for landslides. Likewise, if you’re near the ocean, be aware that tsunamis are associated with large earthquakes. Get to high ground.
If you’re in a crowded public place, avoid panicking and do not rush for the exit. Stay low and cover your head and neck with your hands and arms.
After an Earthquake
Check for fire or fire hazards. If you smell gas, shut off the main gas valve. If there’s evidence of damage to electrical wiring, shut off the power at the control box.
If the phone is working, only use it in case of emergency. Likewise, avoid driving if possible to keep the streets clear for emergency vehicles.
Be aware that items may fall out of cupboards or closets when the door is opened, and also that chimneys can be weakened and fall with a touch. Check for cracks and damage to the roof and foundation of your home.
Listen to the radio for important information and instructions. Remember that aftershocks, sometimes large enough to cause damage in their own right, generally follow large quakes.
If you leave home, leave a message telling friends and family your location.
What to do in a fire?
Fire drills are a big part of being safe in school: They prepare you for what you need to do in case of a fire. But what if there was a fire where you live? Would you know what to do? Talking about fires can be scary because no one likes to think about people getting hurt or their things getting burned. But you can feel less worried if you are prepared.
It’s a good idea for families to talk about what they would do to escape a fire. Different families will have different strategies. Some kids live in one-story houses and other kids live in tall buildings. You’ll want to talk about escape plans and escape routes, so let’s start there.
Know Your Way Out
An escape plan can help every member of a family get out of a burning house. The idea is to get outside quickly and safely. Smoke from a fire can make it hard to see where things are, so it’s important to learn and remember the different ways out of your home. How many exits are there? How do you get to them from your room? It’s a good idea to have your family draw a map of the escape plan.
It’s possible one way out could be blocked by fire or smoke, so you’ll want to know where other ones are. And if you live in an apartment building, you’ll want to know the best way to the stairwell or other emergency exits.
If you’re in a room with the door closed when the fire breaks out, you need to take a few extra steps:
- Check to see if there’s heat or smoke coming in the cracks around the door. (You’re checking to see if there’s fire on the other side.)
- If you see smoke coming under the door — don’t open the door!
- If you don’t see smoke — touch the door. If the door is hot or very warm — don’t open the door!
- If you don’t see smoke — and the door is not hot — then use your fingers to lightly touch the doorknob. If the doorknob is hot or very warm — don’t open the door!
If the doorknob feels cool, and you can’t see any smoke around the door, you can open the door very carefully and slowly. When you open the door, if you feel a burst of heat or smoke pours into the room, quickly shut the door and make sure it is really closed. If there’s no smoke or heat when you open the door, go toward your escape route exit.
If you can see smoke in the house, stay low to the ground as you make your way to the exit. In a fire, smoke and poisonous air hurt more people than the actual flames do. You’ll breathe less smoke if you stay close to the ground.
Smoke naturally rises, so if there is smoke while you’re using your escape route, staying low means you can crawl under most of it. You can drop to the floor and crawl on your hands and knees below the smoke.
Exiting through a door that leads outside should be your first choice as an escape route, but also ask your parents about windows and if they would be possible escape routes. Even windows on a higher floor could be safe escape routes if you had help, like from a firefighter or another adult.
Ask your parents to teach you how to unlock the windows, open them, and remove the screen, if needed. Make sure you only do this in an emergency! Lots of kids are injured because they fall out of windows.
Sometimes, families even have collapsible rescue ladders that can be used to escape from upper floors of a house. If you have one, ask your mom or dad to show you how it works.
In addition to planning your escape routes, you’ll also want to know where family members will meet outside. This is helpful because then everyone shows up in one place and you’ll know that everyone is safe. You might choose the front porch of a neighbor’s house or some other nearby spot.
It’s normal to worry about your pets or a favorite toy, but if there is a fire, you have to leave them behind. The most important thing is that you get out safely. It’s also important to know that you shouldn’t stay in the house any longer than you must — not even to call 911. Someone else can make that call from outside.
Once you’re out, do not go back in for anything — even pets. You can tell the fire rescue people about any pets that were left behind and they may be able to help.
What if You Can’t Get Out Right Away?
If you can’t get out fast, because fire or smoke is blocking an escape route, you’ll want to yell for help. You can do this from an open window or call 911 if you have a phone with you.
Even if you’re scared, never hide under the bed or in a closet. Then, firefighters will have a hard time finding you. Know that firefighters or other adults will be looking for you to help you out safely. The sooner they find you, the sooner you both can get out.
In the meanwhile, keep heat and smoke from getting through the door by blocking the cracks around the door with sheets, blankets, and/or clothing. If there is a window in the room that is not possible to escape from, open it wide and stand in front of it. If you can grab a piece of clothing or a towel, place it over your mouth to keep from breathing in the smoke. This works even better if you wet the cloth first.
It’s great to talk about emergency plans, but it’s even better if you practice them, like the fire drills you have at school. Having a fire drill at home gives everyone a chance to see how they would react in a real emergency. You can see how quickly and safely everyone can get out of the house. Your family should practice this drill twice a year, every year. It’s also a good time to remind your parents to change the batteries in the smoke alarms.
A good rule of thumb during a home fire drill is to see if your family can safely get out the house using the escape routes and meet outside at the same place within 3 minutes. For an extra challenge, you might try variations, like pretending that the front door was blocked and you couldn’t get out that way.
If Your Clothes Catch Fire
A person’s clothes could catch fire during a fire or by accident, like if you step too close to a candle. If this happens, don’t run! Instead, stop, drop to the ground, cover your face with your hands, and roll. This will cut off the air and put out the flames. An easy way to remember this is: Stop, Drop, and Roll!
Every year, kids of all ages start over 35,000 fires that hurt people and damage property. You can do your part to prevent fires by never playing with matches, lighters, and other fire sources. Also stay away from fireplaces, candles, and stoves.
By following this advice, you’ll be doing important work — preventing fires in the first place!
Turn around don’t drive into high rising water.
Personal Lightning Safety Tips
1. PLAN in advance your evacuation and safety measures. When you first see lightning or hear thunder, activate your emergency plan. Now is the time to go to a building or a vehicle. Lightning often precedes rain, so don’t wait for the rain to begin before suspending activities.
2. IF OUTDOORS…Avoid water. Avoid the high ground. Avoid open spaces. Avoid all metal objects including electric wires, fences, machinery, motors, power tools, etc. Unsafe places include underneath canopies, small picnic or rain shelters, or near trees. Where possible, find shelter in a substantial building or in a fully enclosed metal vehicle such as a car, truck or a van with the windows completely shut. If lightning is striking nearby when you are outside, you should:
A. Crouch down. Put feet together. Place hands over ears to minimize hearing damage from thunder.
B. Avoid proximity (minimum of 15 ft.) to other people.
3. IF INDOORS… Avoid water. Stay away from doors and windows. Do not use the telephone. Take off head sets. Turn off, unplug, and stay away from appliances, computers, power tools, & TV sets. Lightning may strike exterior electric and phone lines, inducing shocks to inside equipment.
4. SUSPEND ACTIVITIES for 30 minutes after the last observed lightning or thunder.
5. INJURED PERSONS do not carry an electrical charge and can be handled safely. Apply First Aid procedures to a lightning victim if you are qualified to do so. Call 911 or send for help immediately.
6. KNOW YOUR EMERGENCY TELEPHONE NUMBERS.
What to Do in Case of a Fire
- Immediately pull the nearest fire alarm pull station as you exit the building.
- When evacuating the building, be sure to feel doors for heat before opening them to be sure there is no fire danger on the other side.
- If there is smoke in the air, stay low to the ground, especially your head, to reduce inhalation exposure. Keep on hand on the wall to prevent disorientation and crawl to the nearest exit.
- Once away and clear from danger, call your report contact and inform them of the fire.
- Go to your refuge area and await further instructions from emergency personnel.
Note: Resident staff will not go into every room to search for individuals.
Who to Contact in Case of a Fire
In order to ensure that the proper authorities are notified of a fire, when the opportunity arises once you are safe from imminent danger, call any of the following:
|Emergency Notification System||911|
|UALR Department of Public Safety||569-3400|
|Environmental Health & Safety||371-7602 (7:30a.m.-4:30p.m.)|
|East Hall Reception Desk||570-5101 or 570-5102|
Fire Safety Precautions and Fire Systems Equipment
- Keep doorways, corridors and egress paths clear and unobstructed. Make sure that all electrical appliances and cords are in good condition and UL approved. Do not overload electrical outlets. Use surge protected multi-outlet power strips and extension cords when necessary.
- Never store flammable materials in your room or apartment.
- Do not tamper with any fire system equipment such as smoke detectors, pull stations or fire extinguishers. Doing so is a criminal offense.
- Raising a false alarm is a criminal offense. It endangers the lives of the occupants and emergency personnel.
|Fire Safety Do’s|
|DO treat every fire alarm as an emergency. If the alarm sounds, exit the building immediately.|
|DO remain in your room if you are unable to exit the building safely because of smoke or fire. Keep the door closed and await assistance from the fire department. If smoke is entering under or around the door, stuff damp sheets or blankets in the spaces to help keep smoke out. If possible, open a window and waive or hang a brightly colored towel or garment to notify rescue personnel of your location.|
|DO close the doors behind you if it is safe to leave your room.|
|DO become aware of your neighbors and note if they have not evacuated and tell authorities they are missing and may need assistance.|
|Fire Safety Dont’s|
|DON’T assume that a fire alarm is a test or burned microwave popcorn. Any alarm could be the result of a dangerous fire.|
|DON’T waste time collecting personnel items. Take your keys and yourself to safety as soon as possible.|
|DON’T use the elevators during a fire emergency; always use the stairs.|
What to Do in High Winds
Gusting winds can bring down trees, power lines and signs and turn unsecured objects into dangerous projectiles. Below are tips for staying safe during high wind warnings.
If you are caught outside during high winds:
- Take cover next to a building or under a secure shelter.
- Stand clear of roadways or train tracks, as a gust may blow you into the path of an oncoming vehicle.
- Use handrails where available and avoid elevated areas such as roofs.
In the event of a downed power line:
- Report downed lines to your local utility emergency center and to the police.
- Avoid anything that may be touching downed lines, including vehicles or tree branches.
- If a line falls on your car, stay inside the vehicle. Do not touch any part of the metal frame of your vehicle.
- Honk your horn, roll down the window and warn anyone who may approach of the danger. Ask someone to call the police.
- Do not exit the car until help arrives, unless it catches fire. To exit, open the door, but do not step out. Jump without touching any of the metal portions of the car’s exterior, and quickly get safe ground.
If you are driving:
- Keep both hands on the wheel and slow down.
- Watch for objects blowing across the roadway and into your path.
- Keep a safe distance from cars in adjacent lanes, as strong gusts could push a car outside its lane of travel.
- Take extra care in a high-profile vehicle such as trucks, vans, SUVs, or when towing a trailer, as these are more prone to being pushed or flipped by high wind gusts.
- If winds are severe enough to prevent safe driving, safely pull over onto the shoulder of the road and stop, making sure you are away from trees or other tall objects that could fall onto your vehicle.
1.) Don’t play with matches and lighters. If you see matches or a lighter where you can reach them, don’t touch them. Go tell a grown up right away.2.) Ask your parents to install smoke detectors on every floor and in the sleeping areas of your home. Smoke detectors can save lives. Ask your parents to show you where each one is located.
3.) Remind your parents to test your smoke detectors every month. Make sure everyone in your family is familiar with its piercing sound. Teach them that this sound means danger, and they must escape quickly.
4.) When your parents change the time on your clocks for Daylight Savings, ask them to change your smoke alarm batteries. Give it fresh batteries and your smoke alarm will stay awake and watch for fire while you are sleeping.
5.) In case of fire: DON’T HIDE, GO OUTSIDE! Fires are scary, but you should NEVER hide in closets or under beds when there is a fire.
6.) To escape during a fire; Fall & Crawl. It is easier to breath in a fire if you stay low while getting out. Use the back of your hand to test if a door is hot before you open it. If it is hot, try to use another way out.
7.) If your clothes are on fire; Stop, Drop, and Roll until the fire is out. Shout for help, but don’t run. Running makes fire burn faster.
8.) Have an escape plan and practice it with your family. Find two ways out of every room in case one way is blocked by fire or smoke. Practice escaping by both routes to be sure windows are not stuck and screens can be taken out quickly.
9.) Choose a meeting place outside, such as a big tree or the end of the driveway, so you will know that everyone has gotten out safely. NEVER go back into a burning building for any reason. If someone is missing, tell the firefighters. They have the clothing and equipment to safely rescue people.
10.) Know your local emergency number. Put stickers and magnets with emergency numbers on your refrigerator and every telephone in the house. If there is a fire at your house, choose one family member to leave your meeting place and call the fire department from a neighbors phone.
Video by The American Red Cross School Safety
Source: American Red Cross – The Red Cross has launched a pilot of The Pillowcase Project to teach disaster preparedness to youth in grades 3-5. Learn more about this hands-on training by watching this video of the training as it was held in Denver
Source: Center for Disease Control
Who Are We: CDC laboratories routinely work with some of the most deadly germs in the world – identifying health threats and conducting vital public health research. CDC constantly develops and reviews extensive laboratory guidelines and procedures to protect both the public and laboratory workers.
Disasters affect children differently than they do adults. Learn more about the unique needs of children during and after disasters.
Children’s bodies are different from adults’ bodies.
- They are more likely to get sick or severely injured.
- They breathe in more air per pound of body weight than adults do.
- They have thinner skin, and more of it per pound of body weight (higher surface-to-mass ratio).
- Fluid loss (e.g. dehydration, blood loss) can have a bigger effect on children because they have less fluid in their bodies.
- They are more likely to lose too much body heat.
- They spend more time outside and on the ground. They also put their hands in their mouths more often than adults do.
- Children need help from adults in an emergency.
- They don’t fully understand how to keep themselves safe.
- Older children and adolescents may take their cues from others.
- Young children may freeze, cry, or scream.
- They may not be able to explain what hurts or bothers them.
- They are more likely to get the care they need when they have parents or other caregivers around.
- Laws require an adult to make medical decisions for a child.
- There is limited information on the ways some illnesses and medicines affect children. Sometimes adults will have to make decisions with the information they have.
- They don’t fully understand how to keep themselves safe.
- Mental stress from a disaster can be harder on children.
- They feel less of a sense of control.
- They understand less about the situation.
- They have fewer experiences bouncing back from hard situations
I like this site because they have numerous Language translations.
MedlinePlus is the National Institutes of Health’s Web site for patients and their families and friends. Produced by the National Library of Medicine, the world’s largest medical library, it brings you information about diseases, conditions, and wellness issues in language you can understand. MedlinePlus offers reliable, up-to-date health information, anytime, anywhere, for free.
You can use MedlinePlus to learn about the latest treatments, look up information on a drug or supplement, find out the meanings of words, or view medical videos or illustrations. You can also get links to the latest medical research on your topic or find out about clinical trials on a disease or condition.
Health professionals and consumers alike can depend on it for information that is authoritative and up-to-date. MedlinePlus has extensive information from the National Institutes of Health and other trusted sources on over 975 diseases and conditions. There are directories, a medical encyclopedia and a medical dictionary, health information in Spanish, extensive information on prescription and nonprescription drugs, health information from the media, and links to thousands of clinical trials. MedlinePlus is updated daily and can be bookmarked at the URL: https://medlineplus.gov/. There is no advertising on this site, nor does MedlinePlus endorse any company or product.
Children and Young Adults
Source: American Red Cross
Family Preparedness Made Easy
Make Family Preparedness Easy with One-Minute Drills
In an effort to help you and your family prepare now, here are some one-minute drills that are short on time, but big on impact.
Drill 1 – Get a Kit
Visit the American Red Cross Store and buy the Deluxe Emergency Preparedness Kit. That’s it. You are already done with this step. Easy, right?
Drill 2 – Discuss Kit Rules
Once you get the kit, make sure that everyone knows where it is and that the items are to be used for emergencies only. You don’t want someone taking the water packet from the kit just because they don’t want to make the trip to the kitchen.
Drill 3 – Personalize Your Kit
Have each family member pick their favorite canned foods and personal items and add them to the kit.
Drill 4 – Make an Evacuation Plan
This is much easier and less time consuming than it seems. Pull out a map and highlighter and determine two or three destinations and the routes to get there.
Drill 5 – Be Informed
It is important to know what natural disasters can affect your area and what to do in the event of one striking. Read through the appropriate Disaster and Emergency guides. Watch the weather and stay on top of the news if a hurricane or other severe weather is predicted to come your way. If local authorities are telling you to evacuate, then EVACUATE! If you followed the drills above, then you already have an evacuation plan.
About the Ready Campaign
Launched in February 2003, Ready is a national public service advertising (PSA) campaign designed to educate and empower Americans to prepare for and respond to emergencies including natural and man-made disasters. The goal of the campaign is to get the public involved and ultimately to increase the level of basic preparedness across the nation.
Ready and its Spanish language version Listo ask individuals to do three key things: (1) build an emergency supply kit, (2) make a family emergency plan and (3) be informed about the different types of emergencies that could occur and their appropriate responses.
The campaign’s messages have been distributed through: television, radio, print, outdoor and Web (PSAs) developed and produced by The Advertising Council; brochures;
In 2004, The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) launched Ready Business, an extension of the Ready campaign that focuses on business preparedness. Ready Business helps owners and managers of small- to medium-sized businesses prepare their employees, operations and assets in the event of an emergency. The campaign’s messages are being delivered through Ready Business section of this Web site, brochures, radio, print and internet PSAs and key partnerships.
In 2006, FEMA launched Ready Kids, a tool to help parents and teachers educate children ages 8 – 12 about emergencies and how they can help get their family prepared. The program includes family-friendly Web pages and online materials developed by Sesame Workshop and Discovery Education.
FEMA has also worked with a variety of public and private sector organizations to develop tailored preparedness information for specific Americans. The Department worked with American Kennel Club, American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, American Veterinary Medical Association and The Humane Society of the United States to create materials that highlight the key steps pet owners should take to prepare themselves and their animals. FEMA also worked with AARP, the American Red Cross, the National Organization on Disability and the National Fire Protection Association to create emergency information for older adults and Americans with disabilities and others with access and functional needs. Materials developed for these specific Americans include brochures and instructional videos available at our publications page.
In 2008, The Ready Campaign added a section on their web site for military families. The entire Department highlights emergency preparedness through National Preparedness Month (NPM), a nationwide effort held each September to encourage Americans to take simple steps to prepare older adults and Americans with disabilities and others with access and functional needs. pare for emergencies in their homes, businesses and schools. View the Ready Public Service Advertisements.
FEMA’s mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from and mitigate all hazards