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Chemical/Biological Emergencies & Plan

Hazmat Incidents and You

Chemicals are found everywhere. They purify drinkingwater, increase crop production, and simplify household chores. But chemicals also can be hazardous to humans orthe environment if used or released improperly. Hazards can occur during production, storage, transportation, useor disposal.

Whether it is an accidental chemical release or an intentional attack, be prepared by knowing what to do before,during and after a chemical/hazardous materials incident that affects your area. Your local emergency management office is equipped with an automated phone system that will be used to notify you and provide instructions for these types of incidents. If you witness a chemical/hazardousincident, call 911 as soon as possible.

Shelter-In-Place


S

Seek shelter inside if you are outside.

H

Heating, cooling and ventilations systemshould be turned off.

E

Emergency kit should be handy.

L

Locate all members of your family.

T

Tape or seal windows.

E

Exits should be sealed at bottom of doors.

R

Radio, television or emergency notification network will provide further information.

What To Do Before Chemical Disasters:

  • Know what your threats are in the community.
    • Contact your local Emergency Planning Committee.
    • Contact your local Emergency Management Office.
  • Add these items to your "all-hazards disaster kit."
    • Plastic Sheeting (you can precut these to fit the safe room of your home)
    • Duct tape
    • Scissors

What To Do During Chemical Disasters:

  • Know your evacuation routes and evacuate if told to do so.
  • Shelter in place if told to do so.
  • Keep your disaster kit with you in your safe room.
  • Listen to local radio or television stations for detailed information and instructions.
  • Remember that some toxic chemicals are odorless.

What To Do After Chemical Disasters:

  • Return home or go outside only when told it is safe todo so by local authorities.
  • Open windows and vents and turn on fans to provideventilation.
  • Follow decontamination instructions from local authorities.
  • Seek medical treatment for symptoms related tohazardous materials.
  • If medical assistance is not immediately available andyou are contaminated, remove your clothes and place in a plastic bag or sealed container and dispose of asinstructed by local authorities; take a shower and put on clean clothes.
  • Remember that eyeglasses, contacts and hearing aidsmay be contaminated and must be cleaned properly or disposed of.
  • Seek information from local authorities on how to cleanyour property.
  • Continue to monitor your television and radio forcurrent information.