Earthquake kit sales are up after a published earthquake warning. Employers can plan ahead with kits and employee drills in case disaster strikes at work.
An article in The New Yorker about an earthquake risk off the coast of Washington and Oregon has motivated many to buy an earthquake kit. However, no matter the location, a company would be wise to be prepared for an earthquake or other emergency.
In this podcast, Dan Clark features information on preparedness in the workplace from Melinda Davis, Preparedness and Partnerships Manager of The American Red Cross, Cascade Region. See links in the transcript for earthquake kit lists and more.
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Dan Clark: A surge in earthquake kit sales? Yes. I’ll tell you about the news story that led to it and why each business should have an earthquake kit and a plan.
Hello, I’m Dan Clark of The Safety Brief, tackling health and safety hazards in today’s demanding industrial and construction worksites, compliments of Creative Safety Supply.
Go to creativesafetysupply.com. Use coupon code BIG10. It saves you ten percent.
Earthquake kit sales have jumped. In July, The New Yorker article, “The Really Big One,” told about a potential, huge quake and tidal wave in the Pacific Northwest.
According to The Seattle Times, sales of earthquake kits shot through the roof. One business that sells the kits sold a month’s worth the day after the article was published.
Beyond being prepared at home, businesses understand that an earthquake could happen when workers are at work.
Melinda Davis: If you did have to shelter in place, you would want to think about water and some food.
Dan: Melinda Davis of the American Red Cross says other basics in a workplace earthquake kit include:
Melinda: Dust masks, gloves, fold-up emergency blankets for people who might be stuck there at that workplace for a while.
Dan: A ham radio, or other 2 way radio is a good idea.
Melinda: Also, just having radios in that emergency kit. That way, even if you can’t send messages back and forth, you could at least listen and hear what’s going on.
Melinda also says a workplace emergency plan is very important.
Melinda: Having actual evacuation drills—fire drills—are really one of the most important things that an organization can do to help their employees to be prepared.
Dan: Workers should know how to shut off gas and electric utilities. Having a few people on staff with first aid, CPR and AED training is great.
For planning ahead, Ready Rating, at readyrating.org, offers a free way to review your preparedness.
Melinda: What it’s going to do is really look at the kinds of plans your organization already has in place. What sorts of human and physical resources you have in place and, really, what you’re building looks like. When you finish that assessment, it prints out a report for you.
Dan: Only you see the report.
Melinda: That report is not something that the Red Cross ever sees. It’s not a way for us to judge how prepared organizations are, or anything like that. But it’s there as a resource for the organization so they can look at it and see “Oh, there are a lot of low cost, low time things I can do.”
Dan: For more expensive, long range planning:
Melinda: Maybe you need to consider seismically retrofitting your building, which, obviously, would be a very high expense endeavor. It depends on if you feel like that’s something that you need to do to protect your workforce.
Dan: The American Red Cross also offers free, on site training of employees and a review of your site. Contact your local chapter. Thanks to Melinda Davis, Preparedness and Partnerships Manager of The American Red Cross, Cascade Region.
That’s all for this episode, Earthquake Kit Sales Skyrocket. Come back for more ways to stay safety compliant in today’s ever-changing landscape of safety requirements. I’m Dan Clark of The Safety Brief, a service of Creative Safety Supply. Save 10% off your entire order at creativesafetysupply.com with coupon code BIG10.
Earthquake kit image © ℗ 2008 American National Red Cross; Earth image by Google Earth; crack and claws image © ℗ 2015 Creative Safety Supply All Rights Reserved / Thom Cheney; Melinda Davis photo © 2015 www.EastPortlandNews.com / David F. Ashton – All Rights Reserved; Cascadia subduction zone image by Nat’l Park Service