HOW CAN I HELP?
In most cases, the simplest of preparation and caution can be of the greatest assistance to emergency responders.
Yield to Emergency Vehicles
When you are driving and encounter an emergency vehicle, slow down, pull over to the right, and come to a stop. When the first vehicle has passed, look around and listen for others, they often travel in bunches. After all is clear, carefully signal and return to traffic. In today's well-insulated vehicles with quality sound systems, it's sometimes difficult to hear sirens ... keep this in mind when you adjust the volume ... your hearing is an important driving sense, and you should make sure you can still hear what's going on around you.
Click here to read more in the "Sharing the Road" section of Michigan's "What Every Driver Must Know" booklet.
Slow and Change Lanes for Stopped Emergency Vehicles
Often when an accident occurs along the roadways, it's necessary for rescuers and emergency vehicles to be in the road. This is a time of great danger, and you can do your part by slowing way down and moving carefully past emergency scenes, and paying close attention to hand signals being given by those directing traffic. Nothing complicates a rescue situation like trying to assist a patient with cars going by at 60+ mph just a few feet away.
Keep Hydrants Marked and Clear
Especially in winter, but even in those parts of the township where field grasses or landscaping can hide a hydrant, we'd appreciate it if you and your family would 'adopt a hydrant'. Keep it clear of snow and obstacles (we need a couple of feet clear in each direction for it to be useful) and make sure it can be seen from the road, or that an indicator is visible.
Keep Utilities Clear
Those places where utilities such as electrical and gas service enter your house should be kept clear as well, because in an emergency, quick access could be very important. Emergency responders should be able to see and get to the utilities quickly, so please consider this when landscaping to hide them.
Store Flammables and Hazardous Materials Safely
Fireproof containers and cabinets may seem expensive at the store ... but could we ever tell stories about how many times the gasoline / kerosene / oil / or worse, stored in cans, buckets, or pails in the garage or barn was the seat of a rapidly spreading, almost explosive fire that got way out of hand, very quickly ...
Then we could also talk about the fertilizers, herbicides, antifreezes, automotive fluids ... we should all realize that our garages, sheds, and barns usually contain mixtures of chemicals that are highly hazardous to life and property. And of course, that's where the kids store their toys ...
- Keep flammables in safety containers, in a steel cabinet.
- Keep hazardous substances in their manufacturer's recommended containers, in a steel cabinet.
- Prevent access by children.
- Keep sources of spark or flame away.
- Maintain good ventilation.
Keep Aisles and Doors Clear
In the event that an emergency would occur in your residence or place of work, it is extremely important to keep walkways and doorways clear of clutter that could prevent escape, limit access or entangle rescuers. Make sure all doors work, even if they're normally locked, and that there's nothing piled in front on either side.
Sleep with Doors Closed
Really, even though with young children this can be uncomfortable at first (for them and you!) this is one single thing that can make a huge difference in the event of a fire! Huge! Doors are rated for fire-resistance properties, and keep the #1 killer (toxic, cyanide-laced smoke from burning plastics) out of the room.
Visit the Be Ready page
Just click the Be Ready link on the left to be redirected to this important part of our site.