It is unlikely you’ll get any warning before disasters such as biological or chemical, and these can be devastating to their victims. Besides toxic and poisonous air and water, biological and chemical disaster cause property destruction, fires, polluted water, and other life-threatening problems.
You may have to “shelter-in-place” or evacuate, depending on the circumstances. Read our Evacuate or Shelter-in-Place Guide and listen to emergency broadcasts for your area.
The steps you take now will help you prepare for a biological or chemical disaster that could strike in your community at any moment.
If you haven’t already, read our Basic Disaster Survival Guide and go through the lists. It’s too late later. Do this now.
One of the first things on your to-do list should be getting your own emergency survival kit. Enough food, water, and shelter to last a minimum of 72 hours.
During a Biological or Chemical Disaster
If you are indoors STAY THERE.
- If you are outdoors, get indoors immediately.
- If you are in an automobile, get out and into a building.
- If you are indoors, get up. Seal vents, windows, doors, and any other “cracks” with plastic and duct tape. Shut down your furnace or a/c.
- If you are in a multi-level building, go up. Most gasses are heavier than air.
After a Biological or Chemical Disaster
- Check for contamination and administer first aid.
- Do not use the phone except in emergencies. Only call 911 for life threatening emergencies.
- For general and updated disaster information, call 211.
- Listen for advisories. The primary Emergency Alert System station.
- Discard any food or water that you suspect contamination.
- Cooperate with public safety officials.
- Be prepared to evacuate when/if necessary.
- DO NOT GO SIGHTSEEING! (But check on your neighbors.)