IAFF Hurricane Resources
BEFORE AND DURING THE STORM
Hurricane Safety Checklist. Review this Hurricane Safety Checklist from the American Red Cross to prepare for the dangers of a hurricane.
Evacuate or Stay Put. Listen to the local authorities via your local radio or television and follow their guidance. If you have not been asked to evacuate, determine whether your home or work is safe. You can follow these guidelines from www.Ready.gov.
Subscribe to alert services. Local officials have developed systems that will send text messages or emails alerting you to local emergencies or bad weather. Check your local government’s community information page to find ways that you can be alerted for hurricane situations or sign up for local alerts.
Prepare for Power Outages.
Charge Cell Phones and Laptops. Make sure cell phones and laptops are fully charged so they can be used in the event of a power outage.
If power is interrupted, here are some practical tips for dealing with power outages:
Turn off major appliances such as heat pumps, water heaters and stoves. Unplug other appliances such as TVs, stereos, microwaves and computers. This will prevent damage to appliances and possible overloads to the company's system when power is restored.
Post a list of contents on your freezer door to minimize the number of times you open it.
Leave one lamp or light on so you will be able to recognize when power is restored.
Frozen food can last up to three days. It is safe to eat if it still has ice crystals at the center.
If using portable or camp-type stoves or lanterns for cooking and lighting, ensure that the area is adequately ventilated.
AFTER THE STORM
Coping with power outages. This site from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention highlights healthy steps you should take to ensure food, water, and home safety after an extended power outage. Tips on the site address everything from guidelines on what to do with food in your freezer or refrigerator, to water purification procedures, to carbon monoxide poisoning protection.
Managing flooding and mold. This site from the Environmental Protection Agency is dedicated to providing information on cleaning up your home or office after a storm that has resulted in flooding, including addressing standing water and wet materials. The site offers basic information on addressing viruses, bacteria, and mold that can occur in the wake of a flood.
Removing fallen branches and trees. The CDC provides tips to help safeguard against injury as a result of removing fallen or partially fallen trees and tree branches, including information on properly using chainsaws in hazardous conditions.
Saving family treasures. These guidelines from The National Archives will walk you through preserving some of your family’s most treasured items that may have been damaged by flood waters. The guidelines range in topics from what do to with wet records, to salvaging family papers, to properly air-drying books, to caring for water damaged heirlooms.
Protect emergency response and cleanup workers
As the disaster recovery operations begin OSHA urges workers and members of the public engaged in cleanup activities to be aware of hazards they might encounter and the necessary steps they should take to protect themselves. OSHA maintains comprehensive websites on keeping disaster site workers safe during hurricane and storm cleanup and flood response operations. The hurricane page includes a response/recovery page featuring a link to OSHA's Hurricane eMatrix, which features information on hazard exposures and risk assessments for hurricane response and recovery work. The flood preparedness and response page also includes a response/recovery page that provides useful details on the hazards to avoid when flooding has occurred.
NIEHS National Clearinghouse. Funded by the NIEHS Worker Education and Training Program and is the primary national source for hazardous waste worker curricula, technical reports, and weekly news.
NIEHS Hurricane and Flood Preparedness. This webpage provides documents and resources that address emergency preparedness in hurricane and flood situations. Documents found on this page primarily address issues in government preparedness and public preparedness. Some information has been taken from the Floods and Hurricane Katrina Emergency Preparedness Pages located on the National Clearinghouse Website.
NIOSH Storm/Flood and Hurricane Response. This CDC-NIOSH website contains links to information about hazards associated with storm and flood cleanup
Mental Health Resources
Information regarding mental health issues related to disasters, with specific information for responders, emergency personnel and clinicians
Diseases Transmitted by Foods (A Classification and Summary) Frank L. Bryan, PhD, MPH; Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control, Center for Professional Development and Training; Atlanta, Georgia 30333, 1982
Hurricane-Related Public Service Announcements (Translations: Spanish, French, Vietnamese, Haitian Creole, German and Portuguese languages)
Information for Clinicians in Areas Affected by Hurricanes: Benzene Persons may be exposed to or come into contact with BENZENE in areas affected by the recent hurricane and flooding
Information for Clinicians in Areas Affected by Hurricanes: Hydrogen
Fluoride and Hydrofluoric Acid
Persons may be exposed to HYDROGEN FLUORIDE and HYDROFLUORIC ACID in areas affected by the recent hurricane and flooding
Vector-borne Disease Surveillance and Natural Disasters, Roger S. Nasci and Chester G. Moore, Emerging Infectious Diseases, Vol 4, No 2, April – June 1998
NASA An animated GIF shows the Gulf Coast area before Katrina hit on August 27 and after on August 30. Flooding can be seen at Lake Pontchartrain near New Orleans and at Mobile Bay.
CHPPM: Hurricane Resource Guide
Eastern Eastern Equine Encephalitis
Infection Control Guidelines for Community Shelter and Group Homes – Infection Control Subcommittee of the Manitoba Advisory Committee on Infectious Disease
EPA: Hurricane Katrina Response This site includes EPA's activities in response to the devastation left in Katrina's aftermath, and links to more information.)
Joint Task Force – Andrew After Action Report (The Role of the U.S. Army Medical Department in Domestic Disaster Assistance Operations)