Disaster can happen at any moment in a car, home or building. No matter what the cause of the disaster is, you must set up a proper emergency preparedness plan. With this plan, use your Smartphone’s, emergency lights and safety equipment in ways that will save lives. Either save all of your business operations or walk away empty handed. Learn a few vital ways to prepare well for any emergency that faces you.
Keeping the communication lines open is usually the most important part of an emergency preparation plan. You must stay communicative with your coworkers, employees and emergency professionals. Most people nowadays have mobile electronics, especially smartphones and tablets. Use these devices in creative ways to connect with authorities during a crisis.
Ten phone apps that you should know about
One big way to stay communicative is to pick and choose from dozens of emergency mobile apps. Most programs work with many smartphones like iPhone, Android and BlackBerry, but some only work for certain phones. Pay attention to a few important apps that will help you prepare your phone.
FEMA, also known as the Federal Emergency Management Agency, has an app that provides you with up-to-date information during a widespread disaster. Receive an interactive checklist that allows you to check off important items. Also, receive a map that leads you to the closest emergency shelters and meeting spots. Receive a guide on how to remain safe and recover after a large storm has swept through.
NIOSH Chemical Hazards
Set up a NIOSH app when you want to reduce the dangerous effects of chemical exposure. This app is a good source of hygiene information for all kinds of industrial workers. Know about the most and least hazardous chemicals as outlined by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH).
All industrial workers must know about the permissible and recommended limits to chemical exposure. These regulations are set by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and must be followed. Using this phone app, look for the type of chemical and its formula.
Pocket First Aid & CPR
American Heart Association is in charge of this app that delivers fast CPR and first aid information to users. Receive clear and simple instructions straight to your phone. Also, review dozens of high-resolution videos and illustrations that provide greater insight.
The Shelter Finder app is provided by the American Red Cross. The National Shelter System delivers constantly updated information about nearby shelters. Look at maps all over your city, state and country. Learn about the company running the shelter, the current capacity load and the number of people there. Find the exact name and address of the shelter where you would like to reside.
Preparis is an app that users subscribe to and receive all kinds of information. They learn the important tools and techniques that protect businesses from various disasters, such as terrorism, hurricanes and pandemics. They receive restricted access to everything from live news feeds to recommended crisis plans.
The Wireless Information System for Emergency Responders (WISER) database contains guides on how to reduce the effects of a disaster. Whether the disaster has chemical or biological components, there is a solution for it. The WISER app is made for everyone wanting to respond as quickly and effectively as possible. Know what to do with hazardous chemicals and know how to handle severe bodily accidents. This guide is ideal for professional first responders.
The ubAlert Disaster Alert Network
The ubAlert is an internationally known social network that spreads information to people around the world and saves lives by the minute. This app helps you avoid a disaster as it is occurring, no matter where you are in the world. Receive up-to-minute alerts about each relevant event as it occurs. Look over maps, pictures, videos, statistics and much more. Share this information with friends, family and co-workers using email and social media outlets.
The Pacific Disaster Center (PDC) has created a Disaster Alert system that works for people around the world. See an interactive map of current Active Hazards as they are happening. Know what is extremely or slightly hazardous to people and property. Receive an updated list of all dangerous incidents that may affect your situation.
Know Your Plan
Know Your Plan has tips to help you prepare for effective insurance plans. Read guides on how to get the protection you need, according to the Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety. Unravel a checklist that helps you prepare for storms, tornadoes, evacuations and more. Have alerts that remind you when to finish tasks along with options to customize a plan and share information via social media.
The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) has a NFPA 1600 app that lays out crucial disaster planning tips. Know how to manage yourself and your business during the worst crisis. Search for website links, phone numbers and addresses that pertain to NFPA and other emergency programs.
Emergency lighting consists of all the devices that turn on when the primary lighting fails. During a building-wide crisis or natural disaster, it is common for the main source of power to stop working altogether. A common disaster is a fire that eats through the wires and burns out the main electrical parts. This usually causes a blackout that sweeps the building into darkness and creates widespread panic.
Emergency lights are needed to work fully and automatically during any mishap. The lights must be strong enough to help everyone escape the building quickly and safely. Most building owners are allowed to choose their own custom emergency lights; however, most buildings are controlled by the types of lights that can be installed.
Whether the building is a hotel, department store or college dorm, there are lighting tools and standards that help people during emergencies. You must choose the right types of lights that last for specified amounts of time. It is important that you know the basic types of emergency lighting devices available.
Know the different forms of emergency lighting
Emergency escape lights
Emergency escape lights lead the way to emergency exits. People need enough illumination to exit locations safely without trampling over each other. Emergency escape lighting is a vital part of fire safety regulation for buildings.
Standby lights work to resume normalcy to activities interrupted by blackouts and other disasters. Standby lighting is not legally required, but its usage depends on the use and occupancy of the building. Keep these lights on standby if you do not know the solidity of the main lights.
Know the different forms of emergency escape lights
Escape route lights
Escape route lights are used along signs to ensure that everyone exits the building safely. These signs usually include arrows pointing to exits and pictures of stick figures running. Find these lights mainly in aisles and hallways leading to doors.
Open area lights
Open area lights are large, bright lights that reduce the panic that people feel in dark areas. In parks or parking lots, people need enough light to reach an escape route safely. They need this flood of light to reduce feelings of fear and desperation.
High risk task area lights
High risk task area lights protect people working in dangerous, high-risk task areas. If there is an escape route, find it easier to reach it without stumbling over dangerous equipment or tripping on slippery floors. Receive enough illumination to carry out proper shut-down routines and reduce the high risks around you.
Design and consultation
The design and consultation are included in the good installation of emergency escape lights. The building designers and consultants must know exactly where to install an emergency light. They create a plan that marks the areas of coverage, the types of power sources and more.
Types of power sources
Self-contained / single point
The installation of a self-contained power source is fast, affordable and minimal in maintenance. There are no requirements to install special wires or ventilation systems. Installers can use standard wires and extend the system with extra luminaires.
A major disadvantage is the short-term battery life that varies from 2 to 4 years. Also, fluctuating temperatures could affect the system. You have to carry out tests on the system as well. Cost, longevity and maintenance are factors that determine your decision to use a self-contained unit or a central battery. If you want a long-term installation that is easy to maintain, you may want a more expensive central battery for a big project.
Central battery source
A central battery source is easy to manage because it is found in a single main location. It is simpler to maintain the system and carry out tests this way. The lifespan varies from 5 to 25 years based on the complexity of the battery. It is stable in an environment with sharply varying temperatures.
Unfortunately, the installation for this battery source is expensive. If the battery or circuit fails, a large chunk of the system becomes disabled. Also, in a battery room, you may need to provide ventilation that releases acid gases.
Mode of operation
Once you choose the right source of power, choose the best mode of operation. The main choice is between a maintained or non-maintained luminaire. Learn more about the different types of operations.
Maintained emergency luminaire
A maintained emergency luminaire has emergency lights that operate all the time. The maintained mode is mainly placed in buildings that are used constantly, such as stores, clubs and movie theaters. When the lights are always on, the building owners can save energy by using dimmers.
Non-maintained emergency luminaire
A non-maintained emergency luminaire has emergency lights that operate only when the main lights fail. The lights are integrated into the building’s main circuits. The non-maintained mode is found in work offices and factories where people spot out escape routes easily.
Combined emergency luminaire
A combined emergency luminaire consists of several lights. At least one light is connected to the emergency lighting system, and the other one is connected to the standard lighting system.
Once you have the emergency lights and phone apps ready, you need to supply yourself with other safety equipment. Go far when you use tools to reduce large fires or prevent chemical spills. Learn about the most common pieces of safety equipment that people use to protect themselves during disasters.
Fire safety equipment
There are plenty of fire safety tools that prevent and control fires. Make sure you have clear LED exit signs that lead people out of large rooms and buildings. Another tool you need is a fire extinguisher that gets rid of a fire before it gets out of control. Also, have an alarm that alerts people throughout a building. Before the fire starts, install a fire-resistant insulation system. So that everyone is familiar with fire safety protocols, host fire drills every now and then.
Perhaps the most important device to have is a smoke detector. Not all detection products are made alike, though. Choose one that is powered by a battery or electrical connection. The most reliable one is powered by an air conditioner and backed up by a battery. Buying the cheapest battery with the smallest number of volts is not recommended.
Know how to plan for an emergency
When you make good use of safety tools and tricks, you prevent a disaster from getting worse. Prevent bodily injuries and deaths from happening to you and people you know. There are certain safety programs and equipment that are proven to be beneficial. Many companies provide phone apps that release emergency information updated by the minute. There are other companies that sell emergency lights for all types of buildings and power needs. The use of emergency lights is legally required in many buildings. You have to inspect and maintain these emergency systems for optimal functioning. Overall, there are certain things that you must know if you want to be prepared for any disaster.