One of the 15 disaster scenarios most of the governments including the US government plans for is the explosion of a small nuclear bomb set off by the terrorists. For the people who survive the initial blast also have chances of a radioactive fallout, so sheltering indoors is very important so as to lower the radiation exposure keeping essentials like radio, water, medicines, and food handy for the first crucial 24-48 hours. The FEMA (The Federal Emergency Management Agency), provides a complete supply list of emergency essentials kit, which it recommends to every American family to get hands-on and be prepared with the kit.
Many such nuclear bomb threats have been laid out by various governments in order to warn people how much and how far they can have their dangerous effects. Tensions between the US and North Korea have soared in recent months, and North Korea threatens to rain down ” nuclear thunderbolts” and this isolated country alone yield more than 14,900 nuclear weapons that can strike the whole Alaska. North Korea recently launched its first intercontinental ballistic missile which is capable of travelling 3,400 miles with a weapon on top.
Their construction is similar to the rockets that launch people into space. But, its launch has inflicted many global tensions and fear of nuclear conflicts.
Avoiding the intense and hot flash of light, the shockwaves, and the fireballs is a matter of fate. But in case it happens near your city or town, you should immediately take shelter indoors, stay put and listen to the radio for further instructions. Sheltering can save hundreds of thousands of lives in a city or a town. No one can ever think of their city or town to be a target but it’s about time that people prepare for the worst and save themselves. This isn’t just a matter of nuclear bombing, but it is a for a general emergency preparedness for everyone.
WHY SHOULD ONE PREPARE FOR 24-48 HOURS?
Why there is a need to get immediately prepared for the 24-48 hours of the nuclear bombing can be illustrated by the following diagram.
In this diagram, the dark purple which keeps on shrinking within 24 hours is the dangerous fallout zone and the faint light purple which keeps on growing for the next 24 hours before it shrinks, is the hot zone. Fallout is a dangerous aftereffect of the nuclear bombings which is basically a by-product of radioisotopes created by splitting atoms.These fearsome fallouts decay rapidly and emit gamma radiations which is also a form of highly energetic light.
Too much exposure to this radiation can damage the body’s cells, leading to a condition called the acute radiation sickness. It can also affect the body’s immune system and ultimately affects the body’s ability to fight infections. One should not be foolish to think that they can escape these radiations by escaping away in a car or other vehicle.
WHAT SHOULD BE IN YOUR EMERGENCY KIT?
If one plans to rush to a fallout shelter within the few minutes after the blast, few things need to be kept as your emergency kit for the next 24-48 hours. In case if a full emergency kit isn’t ready if someone’s on a public transit or is coming from work, professionals suggest that one should grab the following items as long as they don’t find a shelter for a few minutes:
⦁ Number one is the radio. Buddemeier, the famous Radiation Safety Specialist prefers a radio over a mobile phone as sometimes the mobile towers may get affected because of the powerful effect of nuclear weapons, called electromagnetic pulse. Radio is the utmost important tool in the emergency kit as it can warn you of the possible dangerous effects and fallouts, when can you leave the shelter and what are the possible safest routes of a fallout shelter.
The above picture shows the protective factors that various buildings have within them. The higher is the number, the greater is the protection from the radiation.
⦁ The second most important thing comes the water. At least one gallon per person per day water should be there according to ready.gov and other radioactive specialists. Water is not only needed for drinking but also rinsing off any radioactive fallout from your clothes because it can drastically reduce one’s radiation exposure.
⦁ One should also grab a bar or any handy food item to curb hunger a little bit.
⦁ Lastly but not the least, some medications and treatment should be there that you might need.
⦁ While most of the people think that that potassium iodide, or simply the KI pills act as an anti-radiation drug. But they do not. They are only for protecting radio-iodine, which is one of the radionucleotides among other thousands of radionucleotides. Buddemeir does not recommend the intake of potassium iodine pills immediately after a blast as they aren’t that much useful in the first 48 hours.
So, if we summarize the most important things that go into the bag of the emergency preparedness kit are the shelter, water, food, and medicines.
Most of the radioactive specialists say that not much cannot be done for the blast casualties but if proper measures like these are taken into consideration, fallout casualties are entirely preventable and knowing what to do after or during an event like this or even in some other disasters if people are prepared, hundreds of thousands of lives can be saved from the possible radiation illnesses and fatalities.
THE CHECKLIST SUPPLIED BY FEMA (THE FEDERAL EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AGENCY)
Though the above list was a quite basic one and can be used during or after any disaster other than nuclear bombing, FEMA supplies an appropriate checklist which is to be used during the nuclear fallout and also during conditions like tornadoes, hurricanes, snowstorms, and other emergencies which demands a shelter to be taken immediately.
FEMA recommends an emergency kit should be made in a compact and a portable bag and it should consist of the following things:
⦁ Water, the most important thing. It should be one gallon per person per day of water which can be used for multiple reasons like drinking, sanitation and also for rinsing off any nuclear fallout from your clothes.
⦁ There should be at least three to four-day supply of food which should be non-perishable.
⦁ A battery powered radio for the follow up of instructions and if possible, a NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert. Extra batteries should be kept for both the radios.
⦁ A flashlight because there can be severe power cuts or power outages due to the disaster. Extra batteries for the same should also be kept.
⦁ First aid kit is a must with an inclusion of all necessary medicines and allergens.
⦁ A small whistle should also be there in order to signal for help.
⦁ A dust mask so that it filters out the contaminated air and prevent from possible infections and allergies.
⦁ Plastic sheeting and duct tape should be handy because we don’t know where and in what condition the shelter would be.
⦁ Moist towels, paper bags, tissue papers, and garbage bags for personal sanitation and to maintain hygiene.
⦁ Local maps in case you have to migrate from one place to another in search of another emergency shelters.
⦁ Prescription of the medications taken and in case more are needed. Also, glasses can be kept for emergency.
⦁ If there are infants or toddlers in the family, infant kits, infant formula, and some diapers must be kept handy.
⦁ If there are pets, pet food and extra water for the pet must be there.
⦁ Don’t forget to miss out on important family documents such as insurance policies, bank account records and preferably in a waterproof containers or pouches.
⦁ Some cash and change in case of emergency.
⦁ Ready.gov recommends keeping a copy of the first aid book as well collecting information from their website and keeping a copy of it too.
⦁ Sleeping utilities such as sleeping bags, warm blankets and some extra bedding in case if someone lives in a colder climate.
⦁ Some extra clothing which can be durable for three to four days.
⦁ Household chlorine bleach with a medicine dropper, which can be used as a disinfectant.
⦁ Fire extinguishers should be installed in a shelter, and if not, it should be taken care of to carry them with you.
⦁ Matchsticks should be kept but only in a waterproof container.
⦁ Personal hygiene items for women and other feminine supplies.
⦁ For the food to be served, paper utensils such as paper cups, paper plates, and plastic glasses should be kept in
⦁ Some recreation stuff if you are with children should be kept like pencils, paper, books, games, or puzzles.
Buddemeier says “I hope no one will ever have to act on my advice. But if people could find good shelters, are able to follow all the instructions on what has to be included in the kit and are able to receive broadcast instructions from emergency personnel – the blow of a catastrophe could be softened”.
H/T: Business Insider