Frequently Asked Training Questions
Q. Does My Family Need An Emergency Preparedness Plan?
Your family may not be together when a disaster strikes so it is important to plan in advance: how you will get to a safe place; how you will contact one another; how you will get back together; and what you will do in different situations.You should also inquire about emergency plans at places where your family spends time: work, daycare and school, faith organizations, sports events and commuting. If no plans exist, consider volunteering to help create one. Talk to community leaders, your colleagues, neighbors and members of faith or civic organizations about how you can work together in the event of an emergency. You will be better prepared to safely reunite your family and loved ones during an emergency if you think ahead and communicate with others in advance. Fema provides a convenient print-out for your family's important information. Print it out, fill it out, hand it out!! Give it to all your family members, friends, anyone that you want to be part of your emergency plan. Prepare yourself and your family for a disaster by making an emergency plan.Download the Family Emergency Plan
, print the pages and fill them in offline.Your emergency planning should also address the care of pets
, aiding family members with access and functional needs
and safely shutting off utilities.
Read more about school
and workplace plans
.Once you've collected this important information, gather your family members and discuss the information to put in the plan. Practice your plan at least twice a year and update it according to any issues that arise.In planning for emergencies, individual differences make it important for every household and each individual to consider what they need in their plans and their supplies. A few examples of considerations for tailoring your plans and supplies include:
- Households with children should understand the school’s plans and where the children will stay safe if adults in the household need to shelter in other locations until the immediate hazard is over.
- Individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing should make sure that they can receive emergency alerts and warnings in an accessible form.
- Individuals who require accessible transportation should work with their local paratransit and disability service providers to make an emergency plan.
- People who speak languages other than English may need to identify sources of alerts and warnings and information about community plans in other languages.
- People without vehicles should know local plans for public transportation and may need to make arrangements for transportation from local government, organizations or others.
- Households with infants should plan for food and supplies for infants and nursing mothers.
- People with dietary needs should have an adequate emergency food supply to meet their needs.
- People who take medications should maintain an adequate supply, and copies of their prescriptions.
- People with service animals should work with local emergency management to ensure that their service dog will be admitted to shelters with them during emergencies (as required by law) and should make sure their plan kit supplies include food and other items for their service animal.
- People who require power for medical or other assistive devices should consider how they will maintain the use of these devices if there is a loss of power. Keep extra batteries for small devices (hearing aids, cell phones for example) and consider obtaining and learning how to use a generator for home use and carrying a charger when away from home, especially when loss of power may jeopardize health or safety.
Q. Do We Really Need A Fire Evacuation Plan?
A. Each year more than 2,500 people die and 12,600 are injured in home fires in the United States, with direct property loss due to home fires estimated at $7.3 billion annually. Fire is FAST! There is little time! In less than 30 seconds a small flame can get completely out of control and turn into a major fire. It only takes minutes for thick black smoke to fill a house or for it to be engulfed in flames. Most deadly fires occur in the home when people are asleep. If you wake up to a fire, you won't have time to grab valuables because fire spreads too quickly and the smoke is too thick. There is only time to escape. Fire is HOT! Heat is more threatening than flames. A fire's heat alone can kill. Room temperatures in a fire can be 100 degrees at floor level and rise to 600 degrees at eye level. Inhaling this super-hot air will scorch your lungs. This heat can melt clothes to your skin. In five minutes, a room can get so hot that everything in it ignites at once: this is called flashover. Fire is DARK! Fire isn't bright, it's pitch black. Fire starts bright, but quickly produces black smoke and complete darkness. If you wake up to a fire you may be blinded, disoriented and unable to find your way around the home you've lived in for years. Fire is DEADLY! Smoke and toxic gases kill more people than flames do. Fire uses up the oxygen you need and produces smoke and poisonous gases that kill. Breathing even small amounts of smoke and toxic gases can make you drowsy, disoriented and short of breath. The odorless, colorless fumes can lull you into a deep sleep before the flames reach your door. You may not wake up in time to escape.Only when we know the true nature of fire can we prepare our families and ourselves.
Before a Fire - CREATE AND PRACTICE A FIRE ESCAPE PLAN! In the event of a fire, remember that every second counts, so you and your family must always be prepared. Escape plans help you get out of your home quickly.Twice each year, practice your home fire escape plan. Some tips to consider when preparing this plan include:
- Find two ways to get out of each room.
- If the primary way is blocked by fire or smoke, you will need a second way out. A secondary route might be a window onto a neighboring roof or a collapsible ladder for escape from upper story windows.
- Only purchase collapsible ladders evaluated by a nationally recognized laboratory, such as Underwriters Laboratory (UL).
- Make sure that windows are not stuck, screens can be taken out quickly, and that security bars can be properly opened.
- Practice feeling your way out of the house in the dark or with your eyes closed.
- Windows and doors with security bars must have quick release devices to allow them to be opened immediately in an emergency. Make sure everyone in the family understands and practices how to properly operate and open locked or barred doors and windows.
- Teach children not to hide from firefighters.
Q. Why Should I Be Certified In CPR?
A. One reason why a person should be trained in CPR is that brain damage begins to occur within approximately 4-6 minutes from cardiac arrest, brain death begins to occur within 6-10 minutes.The American Heart Association claims that a person in cardiac arrest has only a 50% chance of surviving if CPR is not performed within 5 minutes. Furthermore, the survival odds go down an additional 7-10% for every minute after that. What is the average response from your local emergency responders to a patient in cardiac arrest? In some metropolitan areas, it may be as little as 3-4 minutes, but in many other areas, it can be as much as 10-15 minutes. If more people are trained in recognizing an emergency and knowing the steps to take, the percentage of deaths from cardiac arrest may be lessened.
Q. Is CPR Hard to Learn?
Heartsaver hands-only CPR is VERY easy to perform! Check out the following video! index.html
Q. Am I Obligated To Do CPR If I Am Certified?
A. Laypersons are NOT obligated to do CPR nor are they held accountable for negative outcomes if they DO decide to act in the case of an emergency. Laypersons are covered under the "Good Samaritan Law". From Wikipedia -
Good Samaritan laws
or acts protecting those who choose to serve and tend to others who are injured, ill, in peril, or otherwise incapacitated. They are intended to reduce bystanders' hesitation to assist, for fear of being sued or prosecuted for unintentional injury or wrongful death
. In Canada, a good Samaritan doctrine
is a legal principle
that prevents a rescuer who has voluntarily helped a victim in distress from being successfully sued for 'wrongdoing'. Its purpose is to keep people from being reluctant to help a stranger in need for fear of legal repercussions should they make some mistake in treatment. Good Samaritan laws vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, as do their interactions with various other legal principles, such as consent, parental rights and the right to refuse treatment. Such laws generally do not apply to medical professionals' or career emergency responders' on-the-job conduct, but some extend protection to professional rescuers when they are acting in a volunteer capacity for actions that they take during an emergency situation. Depending on case law, statute, or job description, most professional rescuers have a duty to act where they are work assigned. When off-duty, response by the same people would be considered a "Good Samaritan" act.
If you are taking CPR/First Aid at the basic level for personal enrichment purposes, you must make the decision whether to help or to decline assistance to a victim. Check with your state statutes for more specific information.
Q. Who Needs First Aid Training?
A.OSHA's standard for first aid training in general industry, 29 CFR 1910.151(b), provides: In the absence of an infirmary, clinic, or hospital in near proximity to the workplace which is used for the treatment of all injured employees, a person or persons shall be adequately trained to render first aid. Adequate first aid supplies shall be readily available.In the construction industry, 29 CFR 1926.50(c) provides: In the absence of an infirmary clinic, hospital, or physician, that is reasonably accessible in terms of time and distance to the work site, which is available for the treatment of injured employees, a person who has a valid certificate in first-aid training from the U.S. Bureau of Mines, the American Red Cross, or equivalent training that can be verified by documentary evidence, shall be available at the work site to render first aid.The primary requirement addressed by these standards is that an employer must ensure prompt first aid treatment for injured employees, either by providing for the availability of a trained first aid provider at the worksite, or by ensuring that emergency treatment services are within reasonable proximity of the worksite. The basic purpose of these standards is to assure that adequate first aid is available in the critical minutes between the occurrence of an injury and the availability of physician or hospital care for the injured employee.
The first aid training standards at 29 CFR 1910.151 and 1926.50(c) generally apply throughout the industries that they cover. Other standards which apply to certain specific hazards or industries make employee first aid training mandatory, and reliance on outside emergency responders is not an allowable alternative. For example, see 29 CFR 1910. 266(i)(7) (mandatory first aid training for logging employees), and 29 CFR 1910.269(b) (requiring persons trained in first aid at work locations in the electric power industry).
Q. How Does The Requirement for CPR and First Aid Affect My Workplace?
A. Industries with a high incidence of injury must have medical care available to an employee within four to six minutes. Since many emergency medical services use an eight minute response time standard for metropolitan areas, employers in high injury industries need to provide first aid training to employees. Rural ambulance response times can be much longer. OSHA compliance for employers in these areas - even with low incidences of injuries - means they will need to offer first aid training (and possibly designate a first aid person or response team). Contact your local emergency medical service provider to determine an expected response time for 911 calls in your area. Any concerns about OSHA compliance for your industry should prompt you to provide first aid and CPR training to employees. Training should be maintained on a regular basis. Refer to your specific state requirements.
Q. Who Needs Bloodborne Pathogens (BBP) Training?
A. The bloodborne pathogens standard at 29 CFR 1910.1030(g)(2) requires employers to provide training to any employees who have occupational exposure to blood or other potentially infectious materials, such as employees assigned medical or first aid duties by their employers. The standard at 29 CFR 1910.1030(b) defines "occupational exposure" as "reasonably anticipated skin, eye, mucous membrane, or parenteral contact with blood or other potentially infectious materials that may result from the performance of an employee's duties." If an employee is trained in first aid and identified by the employer as responsible for rendering medical assistance as part of his/her job duties, that employee is covered by the bloodborne pathogens standard.
Q. Who Needs Workplace Fire Extinguisher Training?
A. Whenever an employer has provided portable fire extinguishers for employee use in the workplace, the employer shall also provide an educational program to familiarize employees with the general principles of fire extinguisher use and the hazards involved with using them. The employer shall provide the education required for initial employment and at least annually thereafter. Note: Local fire codes like the International Fire Code adopted by jurisdictions in Oregon and Washington require the presence of fire extinguishers in the workplace, making training a requirement.
Q. Who is covered by OSHA's HAZWOPER standard?
A. The Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response Standard (HAZWOPER) applies to five distinct groups of employers and their employees. This includes any employees who are exposed or potentially exposed to hazardous substances -- including hazardous waste -- and who are engaged in one of the following operations:
- clean-up operations -- required by a governmental body, whether federal, state, local, or other involving hazardous substances -- that are conducted at uncontrolled hazardous waste sites;
- corrective actions involving clean-up operations at sites covered by the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act of 1976 (RCRA);
- voluntary clean-up operations at sites recognized by federal, state, local, or other governmental body as uncontrolled hazardous waste sites;
- operations involving hazardous wastes that are conducted at treatment, storage, and disposal facilities regulated by Title 40 Code of Federal Regulations Parts 264 and 265 pursuant to RCRA, or by agencies under agreement with U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to implement RCRA regulations; and
- emergency response operations for releases of, or substantial threats of releases of, hazardous substances regardless of the location of the hazard.