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Survival Skills

Emergency Planning Immediately after an emergency, essential services may be cut-off and local disaster relief and government responders may not be able to reach you right away. Even if they could reach you, knowing what to do to protect yourself and your household is essential. Creating a disaster plan One of the most important steps you can take in preparing for emergencies is to develop a household disaster plan.

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1. Learn about the natural disasters that could occur in your community from your local emergency management office.

Learn whether hazardous materials are produced, stored or transported near your area. Learn about possible consequences of deliberate acts of terror. Ask how to prepare for each potential emergency and how to respond. 2. Talk with employers and school officials about their emergency response plans. 3. Talk with your household about potential emergencies and how to respond to each. Talk about what you would need to do in an evacuation. 4. Post emergency telephone numbers by telephones. Teach children how and when to call 100.

Emergency planning for people with special needs If you have a disability or special need, you may have to take additional steps to protect yourself and your household in an emergency. If you know of friends or neighbors with special needs, help them with these extra precautions. Examples include:Hearing impaired, Mobility impaired, Non-English speaking people. 1. Create a network of neighbors, relatives, friends and co-workers to aid you in an emergency. Discuss your needs and make sure they know how to operate necessary equipment. 2.

If you live in an apartment building, ask the management to mark accessible exits clearly and to make arrangements to help you evacuate the building. 3. Those who are not disabled should learn who in their neighborhood or building is disabled so that they may assist them during emergencies. Disaster Supply Kits You may need to survive on your own for three days or more. This means having your own water, food and emergency supplies. Try using backpacks or duffel bags to keep the supplies together. A disaster supply kit with essential ood, water, and supplies for at least three days-this kit should be kept in a designated place and be ready to “grab and go” in case you have to leave your home quickly because of a disaster. You should also have a disaster supply kit at work. This should be in one container, ready to “grab and go” in case you have to evacuate the building. Water: the absolute necessity Stocking water reserves should be a top priority. Drinking water in emergency situations should not be rationed. Store water in thoroughly washed plastic, fiberglass or enamel lined metal containers. Food: preparing an emergency supply.

Food items that you might consider including in your disaster supply kit include: ready-to-eat meats, fruits, and vegetables; canned or boxed juices, milk, and soup; high-energy foods like peanut butter, jelly, low-sodium crackers, granola bars, and trail mix; vitamins; foods for infants or persons on special diets; cookies, hard candy; instant coffee, cereals, and powdered milk. You may need to survive on your own after a disaster. 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 may take days.

Basic services, such as electricity, gas, water, sewage treatment and telephones, may be cut off for days, even a week or longer. Or you may have to evacuate at a moment’s notice and take essentials with you. You probably won’t have the opportunity to shop or search for the supplies you’ll need. Your household will cope best by preparing for disaster before it strikes. First aid supplies Assemble a first aid kit for your home and for each vehicle: It may be difficult to obtain prescription medications during a disaster because stores may be closed or supplies may be limited.

Ask your physician or pharmacist about storing prescription medications. Be sure they are stored to meet instructions on the label and be mindful of expirations dates -be sure to keep your stored medication up to date. Clothes and bedding One complete change of clothing and footwear for each household member. Shoes should be sturdy work shoes or boots. It is important for you to be ready, wherever you may be when disaster strikes. With the checklists above you can now put together an appropriate disaster supply kits for your household:

A disaster supply kit kept in the home with supplies for at least three days; Although it is unlikely that food supplies would be cut off for as long as two weeks, consider storing additional water, food, clothing and bedding other supplies to expand your supply kit to last up to two weeks. A work place disaster supply kit. It is important to store a personal supply of water and food at work; you will not be able to rely on water fountains or coolers. Women who wear high-heels should be sure to have comfortable flat shoes at their workplace in case an evacuation require walking long distances. A car disaster supply kit.

Keep a smaller disaster supply kit in the trunk of you car. If you become stranded or are not able to return home, having these items will help you be more comfortable until help arrives. Add items for sever winter weather during months when heave snow or icy roads are possible-salt, sand, shovels, and extra winter clothing, including hats and gloves. ————————————————- Navigation ————————————————- Survival situations are sometimes resolved by finding one’s way to safety, or one may need to move to find a more suitable location to wait for rescue.

The sources observe that to do either of these safely requires some navigation equipment and skills. Types of navigation include: ————————————————- Celestial navigation, using the sun and the night sky to locate the cardinal directions and to maintain course of travel ————————————————- Using a map and compass together, particularly a topographic map or trail map. ————————————————- “Navigation by observation” of terrain features on a map or otherwise known ————————————————- Using a GPS receiver, if one is available.