Shelter in Place
Whether you are at home, work or elsewhere, there may be situations when it's simply best to stay where you are and avoid any exposure to what is happening outside.
Use common sense and available information to assess the situation and determine if it is to dangerous to go outside or you may be ordered by local authorities to shelter in place.
In such a situation use the following guidelines:
- Close and lock all windows and exterior doors.
- If you are told there is danger of explosion, close the window shades, blinds, or curtains.
- Turn off all fans, heating and air conditioning systems.
- Close the fireplace damper.
- Get your family disaster supply kit and make sure the radio is working.
- Go to an interior room without windows that’s above ground level. In the case of a chemical threat, an above-ground location is preferable because some chemicals are heavier than air, and may seep into basements even if the windows are closed.
- Bring your pets with you, and be sure to bring additional food and water supplies for them.
- It is ideal to have a hard-wired telephone in the room you select. Call your emergency contact and have the phone available if you need to report a life-threatening condition or receive information from authorities. Cellular telephone equipment may be overwhelmed or damaged during an emergency.
- Seal all windows, doors and air vents with 2-4 mil. thick plastic sheeting and duct tape. Consider measuring and cutting the sheeting in advance to save time. Cut the plastic sheeting several inches wider than the openings and label each sheet. Duct tape plastic at corners first and then tape down all edges. See diagram (PNG).
- Be prepared to improvise and use what you have on hand to seal gaps so that you create a barrier between yourself and any contamination.
- Keep listening to your radio,television or monitor telephone until you are told all is safe or you are told to evacuate. Local officials may call for evacuation in specific areas at greatest risk in your community.