Emergency Guide
 
Chemical Emergency
Hazmat suit  
   

WHAT TO DO IN A CHEMICAL EMERGENCY?

In the event a chemical emergency occurs in your neighborhood from a factory or transportation source that poses a danger, you will be notified by local officials using a combination of emergency alerting systems and possibly by door-to-door notification as well.

You will normally be advised to seek shelter in a building, house or vehicle. Only in exceptional circumstances will you be advised to evacuate.

WHAT TO DO IF YOU KNOW THERE IS A RELEASE AND IT’S COMING TOWARD YOU

You should be prepared to shelter-in-place or to evacuate if so directed by local officials.

Studies have shown that even poorly sealed buildings provide some protection from a serious amount of gas entering the building. Those results indicate that if you are outside, you should go in your house, building, or get in your automobile.

If you feel that fumes are entering the building, place a wet cloth or towel over your nose and mouth which will act as a filter and may offer some additional protection.

In any case, staying inside is safer than trying to outrun a release.

If you are outside and can’t possibly get inside, move cross wind (in a direction so the wind is blowing from you left to right or vice versa, but not into your face or from behind). This offers the best advantage for getting out of the path of the release.

In either case, remain calm and wait until you receive additional instructions before taking any further action.

WHAT IF YOU ARE TOLD TO SHELTER-IN-PLACE?

You should protect yourself inside your house or some other building. If your children are in school, they will be protected by school officials. Take these steps to protect yourself:

  • Go inside and stay there, until informed that you can leave safely.
  • Close all doors and windows.
  • Turn off heating, cooling, or ventilation systems.
  • Do not use fireplaces. Put out the fire and close the dampers.
  • Listen to radio station CBC FM 99.1, AM 680 News and your cable television for further information.
  • Do not use your telephone unless absolutely necessary, as we may need to contact you with emergency information.

WHAT IF YOU ARE TOLD TO EVACUATE?

In the unlikely event that you are told to evacuate as the result of a chemical emergency, you should move as soon as possible to the location designated by local officials. Follow these steps:

  • Stay as calm as you can.
  • Gather and pack only what you and your family will need the most. Try to include these items:
  1. Extra clothing.
  2. Eyeglasses, dentures, prescription drugs, other important medicines and a first aid kit.
  3. Baby supplies.
  4. Portable radio and flashlight.
  5. Checkbook and credit cards.
  6. Driver’s license or identification.
  • Remember as you leave to do the following:

          1. Turn off the lights, appliances, and heating, cooling or ventilation systems.
          2. Leave your refrigerator/freezer on.
          3. Lock your house.

  • Do not go to your children’s school to pick them up. That could delay their move to a safer place. School officials will take special care of your children.
  • Do not try to call your children’s school. If there is an emergency, the telephone lines will be needed for official business.
  • Do not use your telephone unless you or someone you know is injured or too sick to do what is needed. If you must use the telephone, keep the call short, since lines must be kept clear for official use.
  • Use only one vehicle for your family. If you have room, please check to see if any neighbours need a ride.
  • Keep your car windows and air vents closed. Listen to radio station CBC FM 99.1 or AM 680 News for reports and other information.
  • Drive safely.
  • Do not worry about the property you have left.
  • If you need a ride, try to go with a neighbour, friend or relative.
  • If the children have to leave their schools for a safer place, their teachers will take them to a designated place. You will also be told by radio or television where to pick up your children.

TO REPORT A HAZARDOUS MATERIALS INCIDENT
DIAL 9-1-1

1) Shelter-in-Place.

  Shelter in Place 

Immediately proceed to an enclosed structure - a house, building or vehicle. Don’t forget children and pets. IF YOUR CHILDREN ARE AT SCHOOL, the teachers will be informed in the event of a chemical emergency. You should not attempt to pick your children up at their school; this would only cause confusion.

You should not attempt to evacuate unless ordered to do so by local officials.

2) Close all doors and windows.

Sealed DoorCover any leaky areas, like those around doors and windows, with damp towels or sheets.

Even a poorly sealed building or vehicle provides some protection against a release. If you are outside and can’t possibly find a shelter, move cross wind (in a direction so the wind is blowing from your left to right or vice versa, but not into your face or from behind). This offers the best advantage for getting out of the path of the release.

3) Turn off air conditioners or heaters.

Thermostat ControlClose all outside ventilation such as air conditioners, heaters or ceiling fans. If you are inside and have trouble breathing, place a wet cloth or towel over your nose and mouth and try to breathe in quick, shallow breaths.