New York Academy of Medicine Launches Emergency Preparedness Tools

ON Sept. 10, the New York Academy of Medicine released a report and tools -- available at http://www.redefiningreadiness.net -- to help households, work places, schools and governments to anticipate and address problems they would face in emergencies.

The report, "With the Public's Knowledge, We Can Make Sheltering in Place Possible," is based on two years' work gathering the insights and experiences of nearly 2,000 people who live and work in four communities around the country. According to the academy, the document identifies unanticipated problems that currently make it neither feasible nor safe for many people to shelter in place. In conjunction with that report, the academy is releasing four "Shelter-in-Place Issue Sets" (http://www.redefiningreadiness.net/rrsip.html) to help members of households and organizations recognize and address their own vulnerabilities in these kinds of emergencies. Sheltering in place means staying inside whatever building you happen to be in -- a workplace, school, store or at home -- for a period of a few hours to several days in order to stay safe, even if that requires you to be separated from other family members.

"Sheltering in place is a very important protective strategy in situations ranging from dirty bombs, toxic explosions and chemical spills to much more common emergencies, like electrical blackouts and snowstorms," said Roz D. Lasker, MD, director of the academy's Center for the Advancement of Collaborative Strategies in Health and Division of Public Health, and lead author of the report.

The academy's main report states that the emergency preparedness instructions being given to people and organizations do not address many important sheltering-in-place issues. According to the academy:

  • The public is being instructed to keep a supply of food and water in their homes, and most keep their medications there as well. But in a shelter-in-place emergency, many people will not be at home and will need to take shelter in other buildings, so their home-supply of food, water or medicines won't be accessible.
  • The public is being told to identify places for family members to reunite in the event of an emergency. But those instructions don't address situations in which it might be unsafe to go to such a place, such as if you would have to go through a danger zone to get there.
  • While instructions describe how to identify and seal "safe rooms" in homes, schools and other buildings, they pay little attention to assuring that the rooms can accommodate the number of people who are likely to need shelter, provide them with breathable air and tolerable temperatures, or give them safe access to water, food, lavatories, telephones and medical supplies.
  • Schools have been preparing for emergencies that affect the school directly, but children are also at risk if their parents and other guardians need to shelter in place because of an emergency and no other adult is available to pick the children up or be at home with them after school.

"The disconnect between current instructions and the problems people face in shelter-in-place emergencies isn't surprising, since the public never had an opportunity to think about these situations in such detail before," Lasker said.

Download Center

HTML - No Current Item Deck
  • Safety Management Software - Free Demo

    IndustrySafe Safety Software’s comprehensive suite of modules help organizations to record and manage incidents, inspections, hazards, behavior based safety observations, and much more. Improve safety with an easy to use tool for tracking, notifying and reporting on key safety data.

  • Create Flexible Safety Dashboards

    IndustrySafe’s Dashboard Module allows organizations allows you to easily create and view safety KPIs to help you make informed business decisions. Our best of breed default indicators can also save you valuable time and effort in monitoring safety metrics.

  • Schedule and Record Observations

    IndustrySafe's Observations module allows managers, supervisors, and employees to conduct observations on employees involved in safety critical behavior. IndustrySafe’s pre-built BBS checklists may be used as is, or can be customized to better suit the needs of your organization.

  • Why Is Near Miss Reporting Important?

    A near miss is an accident that's waiting to happen. Learn how to investigate these close calls and prevent more serious incidents from occurring in the future.

  • Get the Ultimate Guide to Safety Training

    When it comes to safety training, no matter the industry, there are always questions regarding requirements and certifications. We’ve put together a guide on key safety training topics, requirements for certifications, and answers to common FAQs.

  • Industry Safe
comments powered by Disqus

OH&S Digital Edition

  • OHS Magazine Digital Edition - June 2019

    June 2019

    Featuring:

    • ASSP SAFETY 2019 PREVIEW
      New Orleans Networking
    • NATION SAFETY MONTH
      Heed These Summer Safety Tips
    • TRAINING
      Education, Skill Development, and Behavior Change
    • SAFETY MANAGEMENT
      What Good Looks Like
    View This Issue

Bulwark Quiz