Recovering from disaster is usually a gradual process. Safety is a primary issue, as are mental and physical well-being. If assistance is available, knowing how to access it makes the process faster and less stressful.
Your first concern after a disaster is your family’s health and safety. You need to consider possible safety issues and monitor family health and well-being.
Aiding The Injured
- Administer first aid and seek medical attention for any injured person following a disaster.
- Check for injuries. Do not attempt to move seriously injured persons unless they are in immediate danger of death or further injury.
- If you must move an unconscious person, first stabilize the neck and back, then call for help immediately.
- If the victim is not breathing, carefully position the victim for artificial respiration, clear the airway and commence mouth-to-mouth resuscitation.
- Maintain body temperature with blankets. Be sure the victim does not become overheated.
- Never try to feed liquids to an unconscious person.
- Be aware of exhaustion. Get enough rest.
- Don’t try to do too much at once. Set priorities and pace yourself.
- Drink plenty of clean water. Eat well.
- Wear sturdy work boots and gloves.
- Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and clean water often when working in debris.
- Be aware of new safety issues created by the disaster.
- Watch for washed out roads, contaminated buildings, contaminated water, gas leaks, broken glass, damaged electrical wiring and slippery floors.
- Inform local authorities about health and safety issues, including chemical spills, downed power lines, washed out roads, smoldering insulation and dead animals.