In Time Of Emergency - A Citizen's Handbook On Nuclear Attack, Natural Disasters (1968)
by Department of Defense
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—Bring outside possessions inside the house, or tie them down securely. This includes outdoor furniture, garbage cans, garden tools, signs, and other movable objects that might be blown or washed away.

—Board up your windows so they won't be broken by high winds, water, flying objects or debris.

—If flooding is likely, move furniture and other movable objects to the upper floor of your house. Disconnect any electrical appliances or equipment that cannot be moved—but don't touch them if you are wet or are standing in water.

—Do not stack sandbags around the outside walls of your house to keep flood waters out of your basement. Water seeping downward through the earth (either beyond the sandbags or over them) may collect around the basement walls and under the floor, creating pressure that could damage the walls or else raise the entire basement and cause it to "float" out of the ground. In most cases it is better to permit the flood waters to flow freely into the basement (or flood the basement yourself with clean water, if you feel sure it will be flooded anyway). This will equalize the water pressure on the inside and outside of the basement walls and floor, and thus avoid structural damage to the foundation and the house.

—Lock house doors and windows. Park your car in the garage or driveway, close the windows, and lock it (unless you are driving to your new temporary location).

* TRAVEL WITH CARE. If your local government is arranging transportation for you, precautions will be taken for your safety. But if you are walking or driving your own car to another location, keep in mind these things:

—Leave early enough so as not to be marooned by flooded roads, fallen trees, and wires.

—Make sure you have enough gasoline in your car.

—Follow recommended routes.

—As you travel, keep listening to the radio for additional information and instructions from your local government.

—Watch for washed-out or undermined roadways, earth slides, broken sewer or water mains, loose or downed electric wires, and falling or fallen objects.

—Watch out for areas where rivers or streams may flood suddenly.

—Don't try to cross a stream or a pool of water unless you are certain that the water will not be above your knees (or above the middle of your car's wheels) all the way across. Sometimes the water will hide a bridge or a part of the road that has been washed out. If you decide it is safe to drive across it, put your car in low gear and drive very slowly, to avoid splashing water into your engine and causing it to stop. Also, remember that your brakes may not work well after the wheels of your car have been in deep water. Try them out a few times when you reach the other side.


—If your house is on high ground and you haven't been instructed to evacuate, stay indoors. Don't try to travel, since you will be in danger from flying debris, flooded roads, and downed wires.

—Keep listening to your radio or television set for further information and advice. If the center or "eye" of the hurricane passes directly over you, there will be a temporary lull in the wind, lasting from a few minutes to perhaps a half-hour or more. Stay in a safe place during this lull. The wind will return—perhaps with even greater force—from the opposite direction.


In many areas, unusually heavy rains may cause quick or "flash" floods. Small creeks, gullies, dry streambeds, ravines, culverts or even low-lying grounds frequently flood very quickly and endanger people, sometimes before any warning can be given.

In a period of heavy rains, be aware of this hazard and be prepared to protect yourself against it. If you see any possibility of a flash flood occurring where you are, move immediately to a safer location (don't wait for instructions to move), and then notify your local authorities of the danger, so other people can be warned.

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* When a tornado watch (forecast) is announced, this means that tornadoes are expected in or near your area. Keep your radio or television set tuned to a local station for information and advice from your local government or the Weather Bureau. Also, keep watching the sky, especially to the south and southwest. (When a tornado watch is announced during the approach of a hurricane, however, keep watching the sky to the east.) If you see any revolving, funnel-shaped clouds, report them by telephone immediately to your local police department, sheriff's office or Weather Bureau office. But do not use the phone to get information and advice—depend on radio or TV.

* When a tornado warning is issued, take shelter immediately. The warning means that a tornado has actually been sighted, and this (or other tornadoes) may strike in your vicinity. You must take action to protect yourself from being blown away, struck by falling objects, or injured by flying debris. Your best protection is an underground shelter or cave, or a substantial steel-framed or reinforced-concrete building. But if none of these is available, there are other places where you can take refuge:

—If you are at home, go to your underground storm cellar or your basement fallout shelter, if you have one. If not, go to a corner of your home basement and take cover under a sturdy workbench or table (but not underneath heavy appliances on the floor above). If your home has no basement, take cover under heavy furniture on the ground floor in the center part of the house, or in a small room on the ground floor that is away from outside walls and windows. (As a last resort, go outside to a nearby ditch, excavation, culvert or ravine.) Doors and windows on the sides of your house away from, the tornado may be left open to help reduce damage to the building, but stay away from them to avoid flying debris. Do not remain in a trailer or mobile home if a tornado is approaching; take cover elsewhere.

—If you are at work in an office building, go to the basement or to an inner hallway on a lower floor. In a factory, go to a shelter area, or to the basement if there is one.

—If you are outside in open country, drive away from the tornado's path, at a right angle to it. If there isn't time to do this—or if you are walking—take cover and lie flat in the nearest depression, such as a ditch, culvert, excavation, or ravine.

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Here is advice that will help you protect yourself and your family against the hazards of winter storms—blizzards, heavy snows, ice storms, freezing rain, or sleet.

* KEEP POSTED ON WEATHER CONDITIONS. Use your radio, television and newspapers to keep informed of current weather conditions and forecasts in your area. Even a few hours' warning of a storm may enable you to avoid being caught outside in it, or at least be better prepared to cope with it. You should also understand the terms commonly used in weather forecasts:

—A blizzard is the most dangerous of all winter storms. It combines cold air, heavy snow, and strong winds that blow the snow about and may reduce visibility to only a few yards. A blizzard warning is issued when the Weather Bureau expects considerable snow, winds of 35 miles an hour or more, and temperatures of 20 degrees Fahrenheit or lower. A severe blizzard warning means that a very heavy snowfall is expected, with winds of at least 45 miles an hour and temperatures of 10 degrees or lower.

—A heavy snow warning usually means an expected snowfall of 4 inches or more in a 12-hour period, or 6 inches or more in a 24-hour period. Warnings of snow flurries, snow squalls, or blowing and drifting snow are important mainly because visibility may be reduced and roads may become slippery or blocked.

Freezing rain or freezing drizzle is forecast when expected rain is likely to freeze as soon as it strikes the ground, putting a coating of ice or glaze on roads and everything else that is exposed. If a substantial layer of ice is expected to accumulate from the freezing rain, an ice storm is forecast.

Sleet is small particles of ice, usually mixed with rain. If enough sleet accumulates on the ground, it will make the roads slippery.

* BE PREPARED FOR ISOLATION AT HOME. If you live in a rural area, make sure you could survive at home for a week or two in case a storm isolated you and made it impossible for you to leave. You should:

—Keep an adequate supply of heating fuel on hand and use it sparingly, as your regular supplies may be curtailed by storm conditions. If necessary, conserve fuel by keeping the house cooler than usual, or by "closing off" some rooms temporarily. Also, have available some kind of emergency heating equipment and fuel so you could keep at least one room of your house warm enough to be livable. This could be a camp stove with fuel, or a supply of wood or coal if you have a fireplace. If your furnace is controlled by a thermostat and your electricity is cut off by a storm, the furnace probably would not operate and you would need emergency heat.

—Stock an emergency supply of food and water, as well as emergency cooking equipment such as a camp stove. Some of this food should be of the type that does not require refrigeration or cooking.

—Make sure you have a battery-powered radio and extra batteries on hand, so that if your electric power is cut off you could still hear weather forecasts, information and advice broadcast by local authorities. Also, flashlights or lanterns would be needed.

—Consult page 72 of this handbook for other supplies and equipment that you may need if isolated at home. Be sure to keep on hand the simple tools and equipment needed to fight a fire. Also, be certain that all family members know how to take precautions that would prevent fire at such a time, when the help of the fire department may not be available.

* TRAVEL ONLY IF NECESSARY. Avoid all unnecessary trips. If you must travel, use public transportation if possible. However, if you are forced to use your automobile for a trip of any distance, take these precautions:

—Make sure your car is in good operating condition, properly serviced, and equipped with chains or snow tires.

—Take another person with you if possible.

—Make sure someone knows where you are going, your approximate schedule, and your estimated time of arrival at your destination.

—Have emergency "winter storm supplies" in the car, such as a container of sand, shovel, windshield scraper, tow chain or rope, extra gasoline, and a flashlight. It also is good to have with you heavy gloves or mittens, overshoes, extra woolen socks, and winter headgear to cover your head and face.

—Travel by daylight and use major highways if you can. Keep the car radio turned on for weather information and advice.

—Drive with all possible caution. Don't try to save time by travelling faster than road and weather conditions permit.

—Don't be daring or foolhardy. Stop, turn back, or seek help if conditions threaten that may test your ability or endurance, rather than risk being stalled, lost or isolated. If you are caught in a blizzard, seek refuge immediately.

* KEEP CALM IF YOU GET IN TROUBLE. If your car breaks down during a storm, or if you become stalled or lost, don't panic. Think the problem through, decide what's the safest and best thing to do, and then do it slowly and carefully. If you are on a well-traveled road, show a trouble signal. Set your directional lights to flashing, raise the hood of your car, or hang a cloth from the radio aerial or car window. Then stay in your car and wait for help to arrive. If you run the engine to keep warm, remember to open a window enough to provide ventilation and protect you from carbon monoxide poisoning.

Wherever you are, if there is no house or other source of help in sight, do not leave your car to search for assistance, as you may become confused and get lost.

* AVOID OVEREXERTION. Every winter many unnecessary deaths occur because people—especially older persons, but younger ones as well—engage in more strenuous physical activity than their bodies can stand. Cold weather itself, without any physical exertion, puts an extra strain on your heart. If you add to this physical exercise, especially exercise that you are not accustomed to—such as shovelling snow, pushing an automobile, or even walking fast or far—you are risking a heart attack, a stroke, or other damage to your body. In winter weather, and especially in winter storms, be aware of this danger, and avoid overexertion.

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If your area is one of the places in the United States where earthquakes occur, keep these points in mind:

—When an earthquake happens, keep calm. Don't run or panic. If you take the proper precautions, the chances are you will not be hurt.

—REMAIN WHERE YOU ARE. If you are outdoors, stay outdoors; if indoors, stay indoors. In earthquakes, most injuries occur as people are entering or leaving buildings (from falling walls, electric wires, etc.).

—If you are indoors, sit or stand against an inside wall (preferably in the basement), or in an inside doorway; or else take cover under a desk, table or bench (in case the wall or ceiling should fall). Stay away from windows and outside doors.

—If you are outdoors, stay away from overhead electric wires, poles or anything else that might shake loose and fall (such as the cornices of tall buildings).

—If you are driving an automobile, pull off the road and stop (as soon as possible, and with caution). Remain in the car until the disturbance subsides. When you drive on, watch for hazards created by the earthquake, such as fallen or falling objects, downed electric wires, and broken or undermined roadways.


For your own safety and that of others, you should follow carefully the advice given in the section, "After a Natural Disaster" (page 73).

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Air raid shelters see FALLOUT SHELTERS


Atomic bomb attack see NUCLEAR ATTACK

Attack, nuclear see NUCLEAR ATTACK

ATTACK WARNING: 17-22 Actions to take 19-20, 21-22 Attack warning signal 19 Attack warning time 18, 21 Taking cover 21-22

ATTENTION OR ALERT SIGNAL (for natural disasters) 19-20, 71-72

Basements (for use as fallout shelters) see FALLOUT SHELTERS

Blast from nuclear explosions see NUCLEAR EXPLOSIONS, Effects of

BLEEDING, How to stop 61

Blizzards see STORMS, Winter

BOATS (use as improvised fallout shelters) 33, 38

Bomb shelters see FALLOUT SHELTERS

BREATHING, How to restore 58-60

BROADCASTING, Radio and television: In time of natural disaster 72, 75, 77, 81, 83 In time of nuclear attack 17-18, 32, 34

BROKEN BONES, How to treat 63-65

BURNS, How to treat 65-66


CHILDREN, Special precautions for: Avoiding contaminated water and milk 6, 9, 16 Effects of radiation on children 13, 16 Finding fallout shelter at all times 24 Giving artificial respiration to children 59, 60 Infant supplies to be stored for shelter use 43

Construction of home fallout shelters see PLANS FOR HOME FALLOUT SHELTERS


CRAWL SPACE (use as improvised fallout shelter) 33, 36

DRIVING IN A TIME OF NATURAL DISASTER: Car may be needed for evacuation 72 Driving after a natural disaster has occurred 74 Driving at the time of a flood or hurricane 75, 76, 77, 78 Driving at the time of an earthquake 86 Driving during a winter storm 82-84 If you see a tornado while driving 80

EARTHQUAKES 85-86 see also 71-74 (General Guidance)

Effects of nuclear explosions see NUCLEAR EXPLOSIONS, Effects of


ELECTRIC WIRES, Downed 73, 77, 78, 86


ELECTRICITY (as related to fires) 52, 54


EMERGENCY SKILLS: Need for 2, 5, 55, 56 Training courses in 2, 55

EVACUATION IN A TIME OF NATURAL DISASTER: 75-78 Securing your home before leaving 75-76

EXERTION, Physical: Avoiding overexertion during a storm 84

FALLOUT, Radioactive 5, 6, 10-13, 15, 16

FALLOUT SHELTERS: General information 13-14, 23-25 Home shelters 24-25, how to prepare 26-32 Improvised shelters 33-38 Public shelters 23-24, how to identify 24 Some protection provided against blast and heat 14 Supplies for fallout shelters 39-44 Taking cover before going to fallout shelter 21-22 When to leave shelter 13, 24, 32

FIRE: Firefighting at home 52-54 Firefighting supplies needed at home 43, 53 Fire from nuclear explosions see NUCLEAR EXPLOSIONS, Effects of Fire in connection with natural disasters 73 Fire prevention at home 51-54 Special fire precautions in time of attack 52-53

Fireball, nuclear see NUCLEAR EXPLOSIONS, Effects of

FIRST AID: 55-67 General rules 57 Bleeding, how to stop it 61-62 Breathing, how to restore it 58-60 Broken bones 63-65 Burns 65-66 Radiation sickness 66-67 Shock, how to prevent and treat it 62-63 Supplies 42 Training courses 2, 55-56

Flash from nuclear explosions see NUCLEAR EXPLOSIONS, Effects of

FLOODS: 75-78 see also 71-74 (General Guidance) Special advice on flash floods 78 Using sandbags to protect home not recommended 76

FOOD: Available and usable after an attack 14-16 Care and use of food supplies in shelter 42, 46, 48 Food supplies in time of natural disaster 72, 82 Food to take to shelter 40, 42 Use of food after a natural disaster 73 see also SUPPLIES FOR FALLOUT SHELTERS

Gamma radiation see FALLOUT, Radioactive

GAS SERVICE, Turnoff by householders 75

GAS PIPES, Leaking 73

Heat from nuclear explosions see NUCLEAR EXPLOSIONS, Effects of

HEATING, in time of winter storms 82

HOME FALLOUT SHELTERS: How to prepare a home shelter: 26-32 Outside type 32 Permanent type 26-29 Preplanned type 30-32 Importance of 24-25 Improvised home shelters 33-38 Managing water, food, and sanitation in 45-49 Supplies and equipment for 41-44 When to leave shelter 13, 24, 32

HURRICANES: 75-78 see also 71-74 (General Guidance) "Eye" of a hurricane 78

Ice storm see STORMS, Winter

Improvised fallout shelters see FALLOUT SHELTERS

Infants see CHILDREN, Special precautions for

Injuries, treatment of see FIRST AID



MEDICINES AND MEDICAL SUPPLIES: Importance of having available 55, 56 What to keep on hand for natural disasters 72 What to store for home shelter use 42 What to take to a public fallout shelter 40


Missiles, nuclear see NUCLEAR ATTACK and NUCLEAR EXPLOSIONS, Effects of


NATURAL DISASTERS: 69-86 General guidance 71-74 Earthquakes 85, 86 Emergency feeding and shelter stations 75 Floods and hurricanes 75-78 Supplies for 72, 82, 83 Tornadoes 79, 80 Value of preparations 70, 71 Warning 71-72, 75, 79, 81 Winter Storms 81-84


NUCLEAR ATTACK: 3-67 Areas of damage 10-11 Assistance available in time of attack 5 Checklist of emergency actions 6-7 Deaths and injuries 5, 10-11 Hazards of an attack 9-16 Importance of following local instructions 1, 2, 6, 7 Survivors 10-11 Taking cover if there should be a nuclear flash 21-22 Warning 6, 17-22


Outside fallout shelters see HOME FALLOUT SHELTERS

PLANS FOR HOME FALLOUT SHELTERS: 26-32 Improvised home shelters, description of 33-38

Preparations for natural disasters see NATURAL DISASTERS

Preparations for nuclear attack see NUCLEAR ATTACK

Protective materials against fallout see SHIELDING MATERIALS

PUBLIC FALLOUT SHELTERS: How to identify 7, 24 Supplies to take to public shelter 40 Water, food and sanitation in public shelter 45-46 When to leave shelter 13, 24, 32

Radiation see FALLOUT, Radioactive

RADIATION SICKNESS: 11-13, 32 How to recognize and treat it 66-67

Radio see BROADCASTING, Radio and television

Radioactive fallout see FALLOUT, Radioactive

SANITATION 41-42, 45-49


SHIELDING MATERIALS 14, 25, 34 Comparison of various materials 25

SHOCK, How to recognize and treat 62-63

Sick and injured, care of the see FIRST AID

Sign, public fallout shelter see PUBLIC FALLOUT SHELTERS


Sirens, warning see SIGNALS, Warning

Snow storms see STORMS, Winter

STORM CELLARS: For protection from tornadoes 80 Use as fallout shelters 36

STORMS, Winter 81-84 see also 71-74 (General Guidance)


SUPPLIES FOR FALLOUT SHELTERS: 39-44 Home shelters 39, 41-44, care and use of supplies 45-49 Public shelters 40, 46


TAKING COVER: For protection from tornadoes 79-80 In time of nuclear attack 21-22

TELEPHONE, Restricted use in a time of emergency 6, 20, 72, 74, 79

Television see BROADCASTING, Radio and television

TOILETS, Emergency 42, 45-46, 48-49

TORNADOES 79-80 see also 71-74 (General Guidance)

TOURNIQUETS, Special advice on 61-62

Training courses see EMERGENCY SKILLS


WATER: Available and usable after an attack 14-16 Care and use of water supplies in shelter 46-48 Possible danger of contaminated water to children 6, 9, 16 Precautions on use of water after a natural disaster 73 To store for home shelter use 41 To store for use in a natural disaster 72, 82 To take to public fallout shelter 40 Water service, turnoff by householders 75 see also SUPPLIES FOR FALLOUT SHELTERS

Winter storms see STORMS, Winter

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Footnote 1: In a time of nuclear attack or major natural disaster, don't use the telephone to get information or advice. Depend on radio or television.

Footnote 2: These smaller particles would drift to earth more slowly, losing much of their radioactivity before they reached the ground, and would be spread by the upper winds over vast areas of the world.

Footnote 3: This table, and other suggestions concerning emergency supplies of food and water, is contained in "Family Food Stockpile for Survival," Home and Garden Bulletin No. 77, U.S. Department of Agriculture. For sale by the Superintendent of Documents, Washington, D.C. 20402, price 10 cents.


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