chemical leakgreenspun.com : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread
Not yet confirmed....at 4:50 pm this time heard on breakroom tv that Goodyear is working on chemical leak. First step get home: done. House secured, outside pets hosed down and inside.
Traffic seems normal. No alerts that I know of.
Post later for confirmation and details as available.
-- mike in houston (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 13, 2000
Thanks for the update. Good luck to you, the pets, and anyone else in the household.
-- Ed Yourdon (email@example.com), January 13, 2000.
Shelter In Place: Make Your Kits
Shelter In Place
[ Courtesy of ECHO Caer Group, Emergency Communications for Hazardous Operations, taught through the Portland, Oregon Fire Dept Training Center ]
[ For Educational Purposes ]
"There may be a time when an emergency takes place in your community due to an airborne toxic chemical release. The outside air quality may be affected to the point that it is not safe to be outside or evacuate. In a case like this it is usually safer to shelter-in-place until wind disperses and moves the toxic chemical away.
Many, but not all, facilities (chemical/industrial plants) and emergency vehicles have alarm, siren, horn, or similar notification devices or systems. A three to five minute continuous signal means:
"Turn on TV or radio. Listen for essential emergency information."
These various signal devices may use different tones. The key is that they will be continuously activated for three to five minutes. If you hear this signal go inside immediately and turn on your radio or TV.
For Airborne toxic chemical releases the safest immediate action is to shelter-inplace while listening for further instructions.
1. Move inside immediately and turn on radio or TV for emergency information.
Proceed right away to:
2. Close all windows and doors.
3. Turn off ventilation systems. Remember heating, cooling, air pumps, bathroom fans, kitchen fans, oven/stove ventilation fans, dryer exhaust, chemney/fireplace vents, etc.
4. In buildings, go into and seal a room if possible.
5. Continue to listen to radio or TV for further instructions.
Go inside the nearest structure such as a home, school, store, public building. Bring pets inside if practical. If indoors already, stay there. Turn on radio or TV for emergency information. If you are in a vehicle, close all windows, manual vents and ventilation systems.
In a structure:
Shut all windows, doors, chimney or fire place vents. This includes everything that can quickly and easily be closed to prevent the chemical from entering.
Turn off forced air heating or cooling systems. Turn of stove and bathroom exhaust fans.
Go into a room, preferably with no, or few, windows or outside air vents. If possible seal doors, windows, vents, etc. with plastic and tape or wet rags.
Continue to listen to the radio or TV on a local emergency alert system station until the emergency is over or until you are given instruction to evacuate. (Use a battery powered radio if the power is off.)
SHELTER IN PLACE PRE-PLANNING
It is important that you have a plan for your home or business for sheltering-in-place. Some key steps in this plan are:
* Knowing what doors and windows are likely to be open and assigning some one to check and close and LOCK them. Locking seals better.
* Knowing where the manual vents are and how to close them.
* Knowing where forced air heating or cooling controls/power exhaust vents are and how to turn them off.
* Knowing what room you will go to and how to seal it. Have a kit pre-prepared for this consisting of things such as plastic sheeting, strong tape, duct tape, rags, towels, water, snacks, etc.
Pre-cut the plastic to completely seal all windows and doors and any vents in your designated shelter room. With easy-to-see large labels, clearly mark on the plastic which opening/window/door/vent it fits.
* Have a radio (preferably two). Have one electric and one battery operated radio in the room you've identified. Know the emergency alert system station(s) for your area and have the station numbers written on a piece of tape attached to the radio.
Most chemical release incidents are short-term in nature. But for any potential emergency situation, always keep an adequate supply of contained food and water sources, flashlights, first aid kit, batteries, a portable radio, essential medicines and other essentials. Practice safety drills to be prepared and know the emergency plans for your workplace and schools.
WHAT TO DO IN A CHEMICAL EMERGENCY (SHELTER-IN-PLACE)
When a release or spill is identified, some chemical plants dispatch trained emergency responders to quickly assess the situation and plan an approrpiate response. If offsite impacts are possible, local response agencies (Emergency Management Agency, Fire Department, etc) are contacted and consulted with. The local response agencies will then decide what actions, if any, are necessary to protect the surrounding community.
[ Note: these instructions were not written with Y2K in mind, when communications may be overwhelmed or out and emergency responders completely overwhelmed. ]
Sheltering inside a building is considered to be a proven method of protecting yourself and your family in the event of an accidental release.
IF ASKED TO SHELTER IN PLACE
* Close all doors to the outside and close and lock all windows (windows sometimes seal better when locked);
* Turn off ventilation systems;
* Monitor the local Emergency Alert System (EAS) radio station for updates and remain in shelter until authorities indicate it is safe to come out.
Select a room in the building where occupants can be the most comfortable and which is easy to seal off. This room should, if possible, provide access to water, toilet facilities, and adequate room for people to sit or lie down. The room should have a battery-powered radio, snack foods, and bottled water.
Many people opt for the master bedroom area with bathroom.
If the gas or vapor is soluble or even partially soluble in water -- hold a wet cloth or handkerchief over your nose and mouth if the gases start to bother you. For a higher degree of protection, go into the bathroom, close the door, and turn on the shower in a strong spray to "wash" the air. Seal any openings to the outside of the bathroom as best as you can. Don't worry about running out of air to breathe. That is highly unlikely in normal homes and buildings.
Be sure to make Shelter-In-Place kits, with pre-cut, marked heavy plastic and strong tape to seal your closed doors, windows, vents, exhaust systems -- anywhere anything from outside could get in. Keep your kit accessible in the designated room. Make sure all members of the family know what the kit is for, how to use it, and why. Drill and practice Sheltering-In-Place.
-- Ashton & Leska in Cascadia (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 13, 2000.
Thanks Ashton & Leska for the tips:)
And thanks Mike for hosing down the animals, alot of folks overlook this detail when a potentially panic evoking situation unfolds. Hope you and yours are still in safely.
-- Hokie (Hokie_@hotmail.com), January 13, 2000.
Two chemicals that don't play nicely together were accidentally mixed in a holding tank. One of the chemicals was methyl acolate(sp?) (main ingredient in Plexiglas). A third chemical was added to cool the other two down. Still waiting to see if everything is ok when the circulating pump kicks on. Fear is that the pump will cause things to heat up again and an explosion could result. News radio didn't say why they just don't keep the pump turned off or how the chemicals got accidentally mixed together. A major street in the area, Bay Area Blvd has been closed since 3pm, it's now 10.
-- ralph (email@example.com), January 13, 2000.
This is an alarming report.
In our area, I discovered that a Goodyear plant was sited for several chemical violations and air release violations. I was able to monitor this through the EPA search by zip code - here's the address: http://www.epa.gov/enviro/zipcode.html
It is helpful to know what chemical plants are near you and what type of problems they have had. This site is very comprehensive and user friendly.
-- Dee (T1Colt556@aol.com), January 13, 2000.
This is frightening! Y2K is kicking in hard!
-- (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 14, 2000.