Tag: safety tips

Preparing for Large-Scale Emergencies

It is impossible to predict what the future will bring, but a growing number of people are focused on safeguarding their futures by preparing for catastrophic emergencies. Perhaps in reaction to terror-related attacks across the globe, the rise in devastating storms, and domestic and international social unrest, survivalism has gained a foothold in many households.

Survivalism is a movement of individuals or groups who are actively readying themselves for self-reliance in the event of an emergency that may stifle social or political order — or bring about other negative factors. Members of this movement have been called survivalists or “preppers.” The American Preppers Network defines a prepper as a person who takes personal responsibility for an impending disaster or emergency, typically by stockpiling food, water and other supplies. Although the extent to which preppers prepare for the possibilities of survival during difficult times varies from mild to the extreme, for many it has become a part of their daily lives. There are countless reasons why people prep. These may include having resources should a grocery store or another retailer run out of supplies if a disaster occurs. Individuals need only take a look at the recent hurricanes that took place, in Houston, Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico to see how quickly food, water and other resources can be diminished. Prepping enables individuals to ride out such storms in the event that disaster aid or other assistance does not arrive fast enough.

Preppers practice certain strategies for dealing with pandemic illnesses, weather emergencies such as earthquakes or hurricanes, or nefarious undertakings, such as attacks by hackers on power grids or communications networks. Various groups and resources list their top picks for supplies to stockpile. The following are guidelines culled from The Prepper Journal, Happy Preppers and The Survivalist Blog.

• Water filtration devices, including portable filters, bleach or purification tabs, keep water safe to drink. Be sure to have 5-gallon water jugs to store the water and transport it.

• Rice, beans, honey, canned vegetables, canned fruits, and canned meats have long shelf lives. Retailers offer prepared, freeze-dried foods that can be a good form of sustenance.

• Lighters and fire starters are handy. Should a power outage occur, an old-fashioned fire may be the best way to stay warm. Keeping seasoned wood and tinder also is helpful.

• Medications, such as fever reducers, antihistamines and more, can be lifesavers. A fully stocked first-aid kit also is essential.

• Flashlights and extra batteries provide illumination in the event of a long-term power outage.

These are just a few of the many items people can keep on hand to be prepared for any number of emergency situations.

Improve Visibility While Trick-Or-Treating (And Other Safety Tips)

Thousands of costume-clad children will embark on treat-finding missions in neighborhoods all across the country this Halloween. Everyone wants their Halloween festivities to be fun, but it is important that trick-or-treaters and their chaperones prioritize safety as well.

The child welfare organization Safe Kids says that twice as many child pedestrians are killed while walking on Halloween compared to other days of the year. In addition, the National Safety Council states that darting out or running into the road accounts for about 70 percent of pedestrian deaths or injuries among children between the ages of five and nine and about 47 percent of incidents for kids between the ages of 10 and 14.

Ensuring trick-or-treating youngsters are visible to motorists can make Halloween safer for everyone involved. The American Academy of Pediatrics and other safety groups suggest the following strategies for safe trick-or-treating.

· Supervise the festivities. Adults should chaperone young trick-or-treaters who are unlikely to be focused on safety in the midst of Halloween excitement.

· Use reflective tape or LED lights. Dark costumes coupled with twilight can make it difficult for motorists to see trick-or-treating youngsters. Parents can improve the chances of their kids being seen by motorists by adhering reflective tape onto kids’ costumes. Glow sticks and wearable LED lights also can illuminate trick-or-treaters.

· Carry lanterns or flashlights. Children and/or chaperones who carry flashlights and lanterns can improve their own visibility while also making themselves more visible to motorists. Lanterns and flashlights help trick-or-treaters avoid holes, cracked pavement and other obstacles. For those children who want to free up their hands for better treat gathering, lights that strap to the head are an option.

· Keep the lights on. Homeowners can do their part by keeping outdoor flood lights and accent lighting on to make paths safer for youngsters on the prowl for Halloween candy.

· Choose face makeup over masks. Children wearing masks may not spot oncoming cars or other hazards. Face makeup won’t affect kids’ visibility but will still help them look scary.

With the right combination of caution and fun, Halloween can be an enjoyable time for youngsters and adults.