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Natural and Man made Disasters: First response Analysis


1. Preparedness

          - A well prepared disaster prevention and response plan is essential to reduce the overall fatalities in the population affected. This requires proper planning and execution of plans with adequate man power and equipments.

          - The 6 major requirements, for any disaster to be tackled properly according to Red Cross, are -Emergency supplies, first aid supplies, non- perishable food, water, clothing and bedding


2. Types of Disasters

          - They are Natural or Man made


-Natural are further divided into

                             a. Extreme weather patterns - floods, cyclones, tornadoes, blizzards, droughts and Blizzards

                             b. Extremes of Earths geology - earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, Tsunamis results from earthquakes and Avalanches due to excessive snow accumulation.


-Man made disasters include industrial accidents and nuclear accidents. Forest fires can be due to nature or man made.


3. Emergency Water and Food supplement

          - Self sufficiency during the disaster is key to surviving during the first 72 hours of disaster. Requirements include supply of fresh water (at least 3 gallons per person) and non-perishable food items like high calorie biscuits at the time of crisis. It can be further divided into individual, business and school requirements.


4. Communication

          - During any natural or man made disaster the supply of electricity is zero at best, so having a reliable source of batteries along with radio to tune into information can save lives. A simple communication tool like whistle can come handy in alerting the search and rescue team of person’s position in rubble.


5. Sanitation

          - Personal and office sanitation & hygiene during emergency or disaster situations is imperative to avoiding diseases and infections. A reasonable amount of clean towelettes, anti-microbial wipes and portable toilets help reduce diseases and cuts down spread of infections.


6. Search and Rescue of those trapped

          - For any NGO or governmental agencies to be effective in their goals of search and rescue needs certain important equipments, they include safety vests, hard hats, back boards, flash lights, barrier tapes, earth moving equipments etc.


7. Shelter and Storage

          - Emergency shelters and storage is important aspect of any disasters. Sheltering self and one’s family from extremes of cold and extreme weathers following a disaster requires careful planning and should include blankets and sleeping bags.


8. First aid

          - The most important element of any disaster is first response of medical aid to those in need. For this one should be prepared by means of bandages, CPR/AED, Skin care and burn care, basic medicines for diarrhea and eye care and protection.


9. Training

          - Last but not the least proper training and availability of man power during and immediately after any disaster requires careful consideration. The first responders usually should be trained in CPR/AED, basic knowledge of radiation and its after effects etc.


After all this begins the long process of physical and psychological rehabilitation of population.

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Thank you, Suhas, for this article.


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