Search & Rescue
By Tamar Yonah
3/11/2011, 12:00 AM
Tamar YonahTamar Yonah hosts the most popular English speaking radio talk-show in...
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I am only writing this blog, quickly and off the cuff before Shabbat, because someone sent me this non-official info, that claims to show current serious seismic activity all over the world that is described as 'off the charts'. In any case, it would be good for all of us, just as a precaution, to talk with our families (kids included) and make a plan for what to do if there is an earthquake in your area. Israel is long overdue for a big earthquake by the way.
One of the greatest tips I remember from a fireman I once interviewed on my show, was to have a meeting place outside the home, in case of a fire or major building damage where it is unsafe to stay in the house. He told me something like this:
"I never got so upset on the job, as when we had a fire in a house, and it was very bad, and the parents and kids were outside screaming to save their missing child. I ran back into the building, putting my own life in extreme danger, when after almost being killed, they found out that the missing child was actually already outside of the house, but didn't stand near their family (for whatever reason) and they didn't know the child was out and safe. I almost lost my life because of this needless lack of organization and preparedness."
Therefore, he said, "ALWAYS make a plan, and even do a dry run, of what to do if there is a fire, how to escape if the exits are blocked from fire, as in the stairwell, and you are all sleeping upstairs and can't get to the ground floor."
After that show I did, which was several years ago and my kids still quite young, we did make a plan and did a run through. We also prepared the family's escape if the steps to the ground floor were unattainable. We took a strong thick rope and put it in the kid's room, tied it to the leg of their heaviest piece of furniture (bed or dresser), and then instructed the kids on how to throw the other end of rope out the window for emergency escape where they could get down more or less, to safety.
The Fireman added: Most important as well, is to make a meeting place not too close to the house, maybe a house or two away, where there is a big tree, or a street lamp, or corner, or some meeting place, etc... and tell all the family to meet there in case the house catches fire, or has to be evacuated because of an earthquake or some other emergency. This way, you can all know who is out of the dangerous structure, and who is still, G-d forbid, trapped inside. Then fire and rescue personal don't need to put their lives in danger by charging into the building for a rescue when there was no need for it.
Just posting this blog quickly, as it could be a good idea to make a plan, and discuss an emergency situation for your family, and G-d forbid, we should never, ever, need it.