Learn and Be Ready

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To learn a few techniques and methods to be able to help the wounded in a disaster, can save lives

Be Prepared

To take short courses, read books, see videos or participate in events where you can learn First Aid and Disaster Preparedness will certainly make a big difference if you become part of a disaster scenario. Not only for feeling and acting safely but also for helping others and saving lives.

The following information may also help you to save lives:

When a person is not breathing, not able to breath or snorting:


- Stay calm and make others calm as well.
- Ask someone to reach emergency personnel or to call emergencies if telephone lines are available. Call yourself and set the phone on speaker if no other person is available to make the call. DO NOT delay to start the assistance techniques described below.
- Before starting CPR tap victim on the shoulder and shout at them, and see if they respond, if they do CPR is not needed
- Apply CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) techniques as follows:

If the victim is a CHILD or ADULT

- Remember that the older the individual, the greater the possibility of a heart problem and the need for professional care as soon as possible.
- Do not try to check pulse unless you are experienced
- Do not remove water from lungs if drowning, water in the lungs does not obstruct CPR and attempting to remove it may cause damage.

1. Place the victim on back
2. Open mouth with fingers and be sure that tongue or something else is not blocking throat. Do not do this without looking. Use finger sweep to remove any blockage carefully (so as not to push further in). Do not do a blind finger sweep. Look at what you are doing.
3. If not seeing possibility that the victim have neck injury, place hand on forehead and other hand under chin, and gently tilt head back to free tongue so not blocking windpipe
4. Hold nose shut in a pinch with your fingers and cover the victim's mouth with your mouth. Give 2 breaths (each 2 seconds and check that the chest rise. If air does not seem to be going through or chest does NOT rise when doing breaths, look inside mouth using finger sweep to remove any blockage. Do not do a blind finger sweep. Look at what you are doing. DO NOT stay long in this manoeuvre, the most important is the next one.
5. Put heel of one hand midway between nipples and put other hand on top of first
6. With your arms fully extended press down 30 times at a rate of a little less than about 2 per second (100 per minute. Use the strength you would use for pushing out of balance a person of that size, keep this in mind principally with children, too little strength will not achieve results but too much strength may cause important damage.
7. Repeat 2 breaths followed by 30 chest presses
8. If you feel pulse return, continue with breaths only
9. Continue until the victim reacts or a rescue team comes
10. If person vomits, turn the person to the side and try to sweep out or wipe off the vomit before returning to position the person on back. Continue with CPR.
11. Do not give up too soon! You have chances to succeed for up to 20 minutes, after that chances decrease abruptly.
Note: If another person presses down gently on the stomach above naval, immediately after the chest is pressed down, the recovery rate is greater. Must be done in rhythm.


If the victim is a BABY

- Do not try to check pulse unless you are experienced
- Do not remove water from lungs if drowning, water in the lungs does not obstruct CPR and attempting to remove it may cause damage.

1. If the baby does not respond to tapping on shoulder or a shout, place the victim on back
2. Open mouth with fingers and be sure that tongue or something else is not blocking throat. Do not do this without looking. Use finger sweep to remove any blockage carefully (so as not to push further in). Do not do a blind finger sweep. Look at what you are doing.
3. If not seeing possibility that the victim have neck injury, place hand on forehead and other hand under chin, and gently tilt head back to free tongue so not blocking windpipe
4. Hold nose shut in a pinch with your fingers and cover the victim's mouth with your mouth. Give 2 gentle blows (each 2 seconds and check that the chest rise. If air does not seem to be going through or chest does NOT rise when doing breaths, look inside mouth using finger sweep to remove any blockage. Do not do a blind finger sweep. Look at what you are doing. DO NOT stay long in this manoeuvre, the most important is the next one.
5. Put your third and fourth fingers together midway between nipples and press gently down 30 times at a rate of a little less than about 2 per second (100 per minute. Use the strength you would use for massaging your leg. Keep in mind that too much strength may cause important damage.
7. Repeat 2 breaths followed by 30 chest presses
8. If you feel pulse return, continue with breaths only
9. Continue until the victim reacts or a rescue team comes
10. If person vomits, turn the person to the side and try to sweep out or wipe off the vomit before returning to position the person on back. Continue with CPR.
11. Do not give up too soon! You have chances to succeed for up to 20 minutes, after that chances decrease abruptly.
Note: If another person presses down gently on the stomach above naval, immediately after the chest is pressed down, the recovery rate is greater. Must be done in rhythm.

CPR for FOUR LEGGED ANIMALS

1] If the animal was drowning and is not conscious or breathing do not attempt to remove water, it may cause damage
2] Check if breathing even shallow breathing. If not go to next instruction. If breathing, place your hand on the left of the chest near where the front left leg connects with the chest and feel if there are heart beats. If yes, go no further. I there is breathing but no heart beats go to 12].
3] Straighten neck if trauma to neck is not suspected
4] Do not attempt to check for pulse unless you are experienced
5] Straighten the tongue if doubled back, protecting yourself from reflexive bite even in unconscious animal. To protect from reflexive bite place a soft notebook of something like it at beginning of mouth to avoid automatic biting down
6] Looking at what you are doing, clear out any mucus, phlegm or vomit. Remove any visible blockage carefully (so as not to push further in). Do not do a blind finger sweep.
ATTENTION: Animals have a bone at the deep in the throat at the base of the tongue which is the hyoid apparatus or Adam's apple which can be mistaken for obstruction or chicken bone. Great damage can be done by pulling on this.
7] If breathing, do not go further. I not breathing do as follows.
8] Close animal's mouth and breathe gently but firmly into nose (directly with mouth over nose or using air tight cupped hand). Chest should rise and fall with each of your breaths. After each breath, release you mouth to allow lungs to deflate. Amount of air must fit the size of the animal - just enough for chest to rise and fall. Strength must not be excessive but enough to inflate the lungs and adequate to the size of the animal. 9] If your breath does not go through, hold nose shut with one finger and blow into the mouth holding sides of mouth air tight as possible.
10] If breathing starts, do not continue. Further forced breathing or CPR could hurt animal.
11] If still not breathing, go to number 6 above and repeat process until a passage is clear. A passage must be clear in order for chest compression cycle to be successful.
12] Start chest compression (CPR) - With animal lying on its right side, put heel of one hand (only third and fourth fingers for small animal) of one hand on the rib cage (where middle of foreleg touches chest when folded) and do 10 compressions at a rate of a little less than about 2 per second (100 per minute. Use the strength you would use for pushing out of balance an animal of that size, keep this in mind principally with small animals, too little strength will not achieve results but too much strength may cause important damage.
Cycle: Do 2 breaths (as above) and then 10 rib cage compressions. (each breath or compression approximately once every 2 seconds). Do smooth steady compressions. Always be aware of size of animal while doing the compressions - you are as if massaging the heart, not pushing it out of its place. See Timing of each breath or compression
13] Continue breathing and chest compression until signs of life or self breathing.

CPR for BIRDS

1. Look at the breast and abdomen to see if it is moving due to respiration.
2. Open the beak and look into the mouth to see if there is a blockage. Clear it with your finger or a cotton swab if there is.
3. Hold the bird in front of your face, tilted slightly away from you with one hand supporting its head and the other its body. Open the beak if necessary. Turn your head a quarter turn to the left or right and put your mouth over the bird's beak. Take a breath, seal your lips around the beak and nares for a small bird or only the beak and put your index finger over the nares for a larger bird. Blow five quick breaths into the birds beak. The strength of your breath should be governed by the size of the bird. For a little bird just little puffs will do. For a large bird you will have to breathe more air in to fill the lungs and air sacs.
4. Watch the breast to see if it rises with each breath you puff in. You can see it clearest just where the breast muscles meet the abdomen. If the breast is not rising then you are not getting air into the lungs and need to check again for blockage. If the bird's breast is rising with your puffs, then pause after five breaths and watch for a second to see if the bird has begun breathing on its own again. If breathing has not resumed, then puff two breaths and pause a second to check for breathing again. Continue this pattern until the bird has resumed breathing on it's own.
5. If there is no heartbeat then you have to go into CPR and add chest compressions. Birds normally have a very rapid heartbeat so you will try and simulate that with gentle, rhythmic finger pressure on the keel of the breastbone. For little birds use one finger and for larger birds use three fingers. The pressure will be lighter for a small bird, stronger for a large bird. Use enough pressure to depress the sternum down. You want to press quickly at a rate of about 40-60 compressions a minute, while giving two breaths to the bird about every ten compressions. Check every minute or so for heartbeat and respiration.

When large sea animals are found stranded

Stranded sea animals are found sometimes after a tsunami, sea storms or by other reasons. If this occurs follow these steps:

1- Always call for expert help but also rush to help, time is of great importance. There are certain things which can be done after help has been called and you are waiting. These relate to overheating and stress which can kill the animals, and to the safety of individuals who are attempting to help or who are simply curious.
2- If it is not clear that a whale or dolphin is alive, its breathing can be checked by observation of the blowhole. For a dolphin, the blowhole will contract every 15-30 seconds but for a large whale, the contractions may be only once every 20 minutes.
3- The blowhole at the top of a whale's or dolphin's head is its breathing apparatus. Be sure that water and sand do not enter it. If an animal is lying on its side or on its back and its blowhole is exposed to waves or is covered, the whale or dolphin should be turned onto its belly being sure not to cause damage to or bend its fins or tail, and being sure that there are no sharp objects lying around which could cause damage.
4- Sudden movements of a tail, or the animal being rolled by incoming surf can cause severe injury to people. Do not stand near the tail of an animal, or on the beach side of a whale or dolphin in surf.
5- Whales and dolphins can survive a long period of time (up to two days) if they are protected from dangers and are kept wet.
6- Be aware that sea lions and seals or their young often come onto land for a short period before returning to the sea or during the time that the mother is hunting for food. Handling of a seal pup, besides being dangerous when the mother is around, may break the bond between mother and pup and may lead to its starvation death. It often takes many hours to accurately decide that a baby is indeed abandoned. Be sure to wait without approaching it while protecting it from other animals which could cause it harm or stress. Also be aware that seals injured or not have been known to bite and the bite can cause serious infection. If you need to protect the seal from harm, corral into a safe place by using something like a clean garbage can cover, or a board but do not touch them with it or handle them. Always call for expert help.
7- On-lookers, and would be helpers should keep their distance in order not to unduly stress the animal(s) and also to protect themselves. Be sure to keep dogs away from the scene. Someone should be put in charge of controlling the crowd of onlookers.
8- Do not attempt to move the whale or dolphin without the proper equipment and expertise, since the weight of the animal will cause severe scrapping of the skin, damage to internal organs, damage to the flippers and tail, and will normally be unsuccessful in the end. In no instance attempt to move it by its flippers or by pulling it by the tail or tail stock by human power, machine or boat. If an animal is rolled onto its flippers, irreparable damage can be caused. Do not allow an animal to roll onto its back so that the blowhole is covered.
9- To protect from overheating:
      A) To prevent overheating and sunburn of whales and dolphins, it is necessary to keep them constantly wet. This is true even if stranded in surf, if the surf does not completely cover them with spray. One extremely important precaution: these mammals breathe through the blowhole at the top of the head, and water allowed to enter it may cause drowning or significant stress. Be sure to keep sand and water from entering the blowhole.
     B) Whales and dolphins must be constantly kept wet with pails of water or wet towels which takes much dedication by a number of people particularly if there are a large number of animals.
     C) It can be helpful to cover with sheets or seaweed (except for the blowhole) and keep them constantly wet.
     D) Since the flippers and tail help cool the body by acting to lose heat rapidly, dig holes in the sand around the flippers and tail and keep them filled with water.
     E) Guard against sunburn The sheeting used to cover and keep the animal wet, will also help guard against sunburn.
     F) Providing some sort of shade if possible will guard against sunburn and also cut down on the evaporation of water.
     G) Sun block or sunscreen without oil can be applied but these should not be rubbed into the skin. Do not apply sun tanning lotions.
10- Animals must not be dragged. They must be picked up and transported. For large animals, heavy equipment is necessary in some cases. For small mammals, this can be done with a number of individuals using a tarpaulin. However, the following should be taken into consideration:
     a) Wait for the tide to come in before attempting to do anything.
     b) Make sure that the fins and tail are not pinched, twisted, bent or allowed to drag, and that the whole body is supported. Using a digger's bucket is not an option.
     c) Floatation devises have been successful and a number of rescue teams have these at different locations.
     d) If there is the possibility of constant rebeaching or the conditions are not good at the present location, transport to another location with deep water and reintroduce into the water, together as a group, should be attempted.
11- Helpers should be aware of their own physical condition. Being in the water for too long or exposed to the sun can cause medical emergency situations for the rescuers. Be sure to constantly monitor yourself or others on the team.
12- Remember, all rescue attempts of whales or dolphins take a great deal of planning, forethought and coordination.
13- If only one animal is involved, the possibility of restranding after successful release is relatively low. Where there are a number of individual whales or dolphins stranded, the social bonding between them is far stronger than we usually suppose, making restranding entirely likely and rescue extremely difficult if it is not done correctly.
14- If you are fortunate to be on the scene at the beginning of a stranding, members of the group which are still at sea prior to stranding, may be kept from stranding although this is a difficult and lengthy process. However, this is generally not the case, and so the major task is to keep individuals from restranding after they have been successfully freed until the remaining members are released into the water, and sometimes even after the successful completion of refloating the entire group if the main reason for their stranding still exists.

Be Ready

You should also keep at home, in the car and at your office disaster kits available. These can make all the difference in the world when the time comes. A disaster supplies kit is simply a collection of basic items your household may need in the event of an emergency. Try to assemble your kit well in advance of an emergency. You may have to evacuate at a moment's notice and take essentials with you. You will probably not have time to search for the supplies you need or shop for them.

You may need to survive on your own after an emergency. This means having your own food, water and other supplies in sufficient quantity to last for at least 72 hours. Local officials and relief workers will be on the scene after a disaster but they cannot reach everyone immediately. You could get help in hours or it might take days. Additionally, basic services such as electricity, gas, water, sewage treatment and telephones may be cut off for days or even a week, or longer. Your supplies kit should contain items to help you manage during these outages.

A basic emergency supply kit could include the following recommended items:

1. Water, one gallon/4 liters of water per person per day for at least three days, for drinking and sanitation
2. Food, at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food (canned or packaged without need for refrigeration). Choose foods your family will eat and remember any special dietary needs. Avoid foods that will make you thirsty. Choose salt-free crackers, whole grain cereals and canned foods with high liquid content as canned fruits and vegetables.
3. Battery-powered, solar or hand crank radio with extra batteries or solar charger
4. Flashlight and extra batteries
5. First aid kit which must include bleedstopping bandages. A household First Aid kit is not always enough, ideally a military surplus or Disaster First Aid kit. It must include at least:
      a) Two pairs of Latex or other sterile gloves if you are allergic to Latex
      b) Sterile dressings to stop bleeding
      c) Cleansing agent/soap and antibiotic towelettes
      d) Antibiotic ointment, powder or cream
      e) Burn ointment
      f) Adhesive bandages in a variety of sizes
      g) Eye wash solution to flush the eyes or as general decontaminant
      h) Thermometer (not glass if possible)
      i) Prescription medications you take every day such as insulin, heart medicine and asthma inhalers. You should periodically rotate medicines to account for expiration dates.
      j) Prescribed medical supplies such as glucose and blood pressure monitoring equipment and supplies
      k) Aspirin or non-aspirin pain reliever
      l) Anti-diarrhea medication
      m) Antacid
      n) Laxative
      o) Scissors with rounded edge
      p) Tweezers
      q) Tube of petroleum jelly or other lubricant
      6. Whistle to signal for help
7. Dust mask to help filter contaminated air and plastic sheeting and duct tape to shelter-in-place
8. Moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties for personal sanitation
9. Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
10. Manual can opener for food
11. Local maps
12. Cell phone with chargers, inverter or solar charger
13. Multitool or swiss multiknife
14. Matches in a waterproof container
15. Sleeping bag or warm blanket for each person. Consider additional bedding if you live in a cold-weather climate.
16. Complete change of clothing including a long sleeved shirt, long pants, a good jacket with plenty of pockets and sturdy shoes. Consider additional clothing if you live in a cold-weather climate.
17. Cash or traveler's checks and change
18. Important family documents such as copies of insurance policies, identification and bank account records in a waterproof, portable container. 19. Emergency reference material such as a first aid book or free information from this web site.
20. Prescription medications (if you take them), glasses, contact lenses and dentures
21. Feminine supplies and personal hygiene items
22. Infant formula and diapers
23. Pet food and extra water for your pet
24. Fire extinguisher
25. Mess kits, paper cups, plates, paper towels and plastic utensils
26. Paper and pencil
27. Books, games, puzzles or other activities for children

The items 1 to 19 are a must. The items 20 to 23 may be a must depending on your specific needs. Items 24 to 27 will be very helpful although not a must.



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