Steps First Responders Can Take To Work Safely in Floods
Steps For First Responders To Work Safely During Floods
As a first responder in Andersonville, TN, you know it is critical to protect yourself to be on top of your game. Working in a flooded area presents unique challenges, and taking precautions is one of the most important steps.
Wear Protective Clothing
Working in or near a flooded area requires the right gear. Be sure you have the following on hand:
- Disposable gloves, preferably on top of cut-resistant gloves
- Outerwear that's resistant to chemicals
- N-95 masks
Properly discard any disposable equipment after using it.
Practice Good Hygiene
Before taking a break or at the end of your shift in a flood response area, wash your hands thoroughly with soap and running water or use an alcohol-based sanitizer.
When possible, avoid placing your clothing in your personal vehicle. Consider showering and washing your clothes before going home.
Avoid touching your face with work gloves. Wash your hands thoroughly after removing them.
Stay Current on Immunizations
The CDC recommends that responders have a tetanus booster every 10 years. Hepatitis B vaccines are also required for responders who work directly with patients or may be in contact with bodily fluids.
If you are working outside the U.S., you may require other vaccines. Talk to your supervisor or healthcare provider if you have questions about what shots a first responder requires.
Take Care in Standing Water
Flooded homes can have contaminated water and may need storm remediation. If you're working around gray water from washing machines, bathtubs or dishwashers or black water from sewage, follow protocols closely.
While working in standing water, watch for electrical hazards such as submerged cords or appliances. Increase ventilation when possible by opening doors or windows.
As a first responder, your well-being is vital to your work. Ensure you are up-to-date on proper procedures, vaccines and best practices when responding to a flood in Andersonville, TN.