Carbon Monoxide (CO) poisoning occurs when an internal combustion engine or improperly adjusted fuel-burning appliance is operated in a closed area without fresh air.
The early stages of CO exposure includes headaches, dizziness, drowsiness. A conscious victim may look or act intoxicated. Other symptoms include blurred vision, irritability, and an inability to concentrate. Severe cases cause nausea and vomiting, shortness of breath, convulsions, unconsciousness, and eventually death.
If the victim is unconscious, move him/her to an area with fresh air and place him/her on his/her side with his/her head resting on an arm. If the victim is not breathing, begin mouth-to-mouth resuscitation and CPR if necessary and call 911.
CPR and first aid are often required in emergencies. Administer CPR only if you are trained. Contact the American Red Cross, American Heart Association, or the YMCA for information about training.
FLASH FLOOD OR FLOOD WATCH: Flash flooding or flooding is possible within the designated WATCH area-be alert.
FLASH FLOOD OR FLOOD WARNING: Flash flooding or flooding has been reported or is imminent, take necessary precautions at once.
URBAN AND SMALL STREAM ADVISORY: Flooding of small streams, streets, and low-lying areas, such as; railroad underpasses and urban storm drains, is occurring.
FLASH FLOOD OR FLOOD STATEMENT: Follow-up information regarding a flash flood/flood event.
HEAD FOR HIGHER GROUND AND STAY AWAY FROM FLOOD WATERS!
If you live in a flood-prone area, consider purchasing Federal flood insurance, which will cover the value of a building and its contents. You can call 888-FLOOD-29 to learn more about Federal flood insurance.
To learn more about flood hazard mitigation, visit FEMA’s website at: http://www.floodsmart.gov
Strenuous activities should be reduced, eliminated, or rescheduled to the coolest time of the day. Individuals at risk should stay in the coolest available place.
Take Cool Baths Or Showers. Cool water can remove body heat 25 times faster than cool air.
Wear lightweight, light-colored clothing that reflects heat and sunlight.
Drink plenty of water or other non-alcohol fluids. Drink water, fruit juices or sport drinks that can help replenish lost salts and minerals. These are preferable to soft drinks, coffee or alcohol, which can further dehydrate you.
Lay down and loosen clothing.
Apply cool, wet cloths.
Fan or move victim to an air conditioned room.
Provide sips of water. If nausea occurs, discontinue. If vomiting continues, seek immediate medical attention.
HEAT STROKE IS A SEVERE MEDICAL EMERGENCY.
CALL 911 OR GET THE VICTIM TO A HOSPITAL IMMEDIATELY. DELAY CAN BE FATAL.
How can you tell where a pipeline is located?
Since pipelines are buried underground, line markers like the ones shown here are used to indicate their approximate location along the route. The markers can be found where a pipeline intersects a street, highway, or railroad.
The markers display the material transported in the line, the name of the pipeline operator, and a telephone number where the operator can be reached in the event of an emergency.
Pipeline marker signs such as those pictured above are important to public safety. They are so important, in fact, that Congress in 1988 passed a law making it a federal crime to willfully deface, damage, remove, or destroy any pipeline sign or right-of-way marker that is required by federal law.
Markers indicate the general location of a pipeline. They cannot be relied upon to indicate the exact position of the pipeline they mark. Also, the pipeline may not follow a straight course between markers. And, while markers are helpful in locating pipelines, they are limited in the information they provide. They provide no information, for example, on the depth or number of pipelines in the vicinity.
Sight, sound, and smell are helpful in detecting pipeline leaks.
Your first concern should be for your personal safety and that of those around you if you suspect a leak.
Leave the area immediately
Avoid driving into vapor clouds
Avoid direct contact with escaping gases or liquids
Avoid creating sparks or other sources of heat, which could cause the escaping liquids or vapor to ignite and burn. If you find yourself in an area where you suspect hydrocarbon vapors are present, do not light a match, start an engine, or even switch on an electric light.
Notify the pipeline operator
Pipelines carry both gaseous and liquid materials
Many liquids form gaseous vapor clouds when released
Many pipelines contain colorless and odorless products
Some pipeline gases are lighter than air and will rise
Other heavier-than-air gases and liquids will stay near the ground and collect in low spots
All petroleum gases and liquids are flammable
Any pipeline leak can be potentially dangerous
Excavators and homeowners should dial 811 is 1-800-272-3020 to reach LA One Call before starting any digging projects on or near any pipelines These projects include fences, flagpoles, landscaping, storage buildings, foundations, swimming pools, ground clearing, deep plowing, laying underground pipe or wiring, or any other “digging” projects.
First, use perishable food from the refrigerator, then use food from the freezer. To minimize the number of times you open the freezer door, post a list of contents on the freezer door. In a well-insulated freezer, foods will usually still have ice crystals in their centers (meaning the foods are safe to eat) for at least three days. Finally, begin to use nonperishable foods and staples.
For emergency cooking, you can use a fireplace, a charcoal grill, or camp stove outdoors only. You can also heat food with a candle warmer, chafing dishes, and fondue pots. Canned food can be eaten right out of the can. If you heat it in the can, be sure to open the can and remove the label first. Rotate your food supply. Use foods before they go bad and replace them with fresh supplies, dated with ink or marker. Place new items at the back of the storage area and older ones in front.
Your emergency food supply should be of the highest quality possible. Inspect your reserves periodically to make sure there are no broken seals or dented containers.
Place paper or waxed packages in a watertight container, such as a larger plastic bag. This will keep them dry and make them easier to carry.
Preparing for electricity outages
Some of the products that should be locked up and out of sight and reach of children and pets include:
NEVER tell children that medicine is candy, or that it tastes good. Don’t take medicine in front of children since they like to imitate adults.
Have Syrup of Ipecac on hand and only use if instructed to do so by Poison Control or a physician.
When speaking with Poison Control or the doctor, have the container and pills, or object that was in the mouth, and, if possible, the child with you.
For pet poisoning, contact your veterinarian or Poison Control.
Preventing pediatric poisoning
The West Nile virus naturally infects many different species of birds and can be spread to humans and other animals by mosquito bites.
Retrofitting means making changes to existing buildings to protect them from hazards. More information on retrofitting can be found in Homeowner’s Guide to Retrofitting: Six Ways to Protect Your House from Flooding, FEMA publication 312: available from FEMA Publications 800-480-2520 or http://www.fema.gov/rebuild/mat/fema312.shtm
The force of a windstorm pushes against the foundation of your home. This force is transferred from your roof to the exterior walls and finally to the foundation. Homes can be damaged or destroyed when the energy from the wind is not properly transferred to the ground.
If you live in an area prone to high winds, make sure your roof is firmly secured to the main frame of the residence. Consider building a wind-safe room or shelter in your home to protect yourself. For more information, see Taking Shelter From the Storm: Building a Safe Room Inside Your House, FEMA publication 320: available from FEMA Publications 800-480-2520 or http://www.fema.gov/library/viewRecord.do?id=1536
There are several additional steps you can take to reduce wind damages and losses, including the following:
To learn more about hazard mitigation measures that you can take to reduce your risk from disasters, visit FEMA’s website, http://www.fema.gov, or call 1-800-480-2520 to have a list of available mitigation publications mailed to your home or office.
P.O. Box 324
Plaquemine, LA 70764
Iberville Parish National Flood Insurance
58050 Meriam Street
Plaquemine, LA 70764
7667 Independence Boulevard
Baton Rouge, LA 70806
800 North Loop 288
Denton, TX 76209-3606
500 C Street, SW
Washington, D.C. 20472
Protecting your home from weather hazards
Severe Thunderstorm Watch: advises when and where severe thunderstorms are most likely to occur. Watch the sky and stay tuned to TV or radio to know when warnings are issued.
Severe Thunderstorm Warning: issued when severe weather has been reported by spotters or indicated by radar. Warnings indicate imminent danger to life and property for those in the path of the storm.
Stocking water reserves and learning how to purify contaminated water should be among your top priorities in preparing for an emergency.
You should store at least a two-week supply of water for each member of your family. Everyone’s needs will differ, depending on age, physical condition, activity, diet and climate.
A normally active person needs to drink at least two quarts of water each day. Hot environments can double that amount. Children, nursing mothers, and ill people will need more.
You will need additional water for food preparation and hygiene. Store a total of at least one gallon per person, per day. If your supplies begin to run low, remember: Never ration water. Drink the amount you need today and try to find more for tomorrow.
STORING WATER: Store water in thoroughly washed plastic, glass, fiberglass, or enamel-lined metal containers. Never use a container that has held toxic substances because tiny amounts may remain in the container’s pores. Sound plastic containers, such as soft drink bottles, are best.
Before storing your water, treat it with a preservative such as chlorine bleach to prevent the growth of microorganisms. Use liquid bleach that contains 5.25 percent sodium hypochlorite and no soap. Some containers warn, “Not for Personal Use.” You can disregard these warnings if the label states sodium hypochlorite is the only active ingredient and if you use only the small quantities in these instructions.
Purification Tablets release chlorine or iodine. They are inexpensive and available at most sporting goods stores and some drug stores.
Boiling is the safest method of purifying water. Bring water to a rolling boil for 10 minutes, keeping in mind that some water will evaporate. Let the water cool before drinking. Boiled water will taste better if you put oxygen back into it by pouring it back and forth between two containers. This will also improve the taste of stored water.
Chlorination uses liquid chlorine bleach to kill microorganisms. Add two drops of bleach per quart of water (four drops if the water is cloudy), stir and let stand for 30 minutes. If the water does not taste and smell of chlorine at that point, add another dose and let stand another 15 minutes.
Water storage and purification