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How to Prepare for Falling Meteorites

Injuries resulting from falling meteorites sounds like scene out of a science fiction movie. But as we all learned on February 19, 2013, truth can be stranger than fiction. According to Reuters, “Residents of Chelyabinsk, an industrial city 1,500 km (950 miles) east of Moscow, heard an explosion, saw a bright light and then felt a shockwave that blew out windows and damaged the walls and roof of a zinc plant.” At least 1,200 were injured. NASA estimates the meteor was 55 feet across before entering Earth’s atmosphere and weighed about 10,000 tons.

How much of a threat do meteorites pose? When an asteroid the size of the White House made a record close pass by earth on the same day that the meteor exploded over Russia, scientists labeled the dual event “Freaky Friday,” citing 100 million-to-1 odds. “We would expect an event of this magnitude to occur once every 100 years on average,” said Paul Chodas of NASA’s Near-Earth Object Program Office at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California.

As with any other type of emergency, the best way to respond during and recover following any asteroid-related event is to prepare. Since falling meteorites are possible, if not inevitable, we thought it worthwhile to provide you with tips to help you prepare. After all, planning for a falling asteroids isn’t much different from planning for a disaster of any kind. Just remember to Get a Kit, Make a Plan, and Be Informed:

Get a Kit

As with any emergency, the first step in preparation is to put together an emergency preparedness kit or “go bag.” Although you might want to add a hard hat to protect yourself from falling debris, most disaster kits include the same basic items, each of which should be placed into an easy-to-carry kit for use at home or to take with you if you need to evacuate:

  • Water—one gallon per person, per day (3­-day supply for evacuation, 2­-week supply for use at home.)
  • Food—non­perishable items (3-­day supply for evacuation, 2-­week supply for use at home)
  • Flashlight and extra batteries
  • Battery­-powered or hand-­crank radio (A NOAA-Weather Radio is recommended.)
  • First aid kit and medications (including OTC and prescriptions)
  • Multi­purpose tool
  • Personal hygiene items
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Copies of personal documents (medication requirements, pertinent medical information, proof of address, deed/lease to home, passports, birth certificates and insurance policies, family and emergency contact information)
  • Cell phone with chargers so you can text your friends when you find meteorite particles you want to post on ebay.
  • Map(s) of the immediate area so you know where the largest chunks of debris fell.
  • Medical supplies
  • Baby supplies (bottles, formula, baby food, diapers)
  • Games and activities for children
  • Pet supplies (collar, leash, ID, food, carrier, bowl)
  • Extra set of car keys and house keys
  • Can opener
  • Whistle to alert others if you or any of your family members or coworkers are injured
  • N95 or surgical masks in case of environmental pathogens
  • Matches
  • Rain gear and plastic sheeting to keep dry
  • Towels, which can be used for bedding, to wipe up messes and as bandages or tourniquets
  • Work gloves
  • Extra clothing, hat and sturdy shoes
  • Duct tape
  • Scissors Household bleach
  • Blankets or sleeping bags

Make a Plan

  • Make sure you have a plan for contacting family and friends if any emergency strikes.
  • Develop an evacuation plan and practice it so you will be able to move quickly.
  • Decide how you and loved ones will connect in case communication and transportation are compromised.

Be Informed

To make sure you are updated about disasters, tune to emergency radio stations and sign up for mobile-phone updates. If your television is working, watch the news.

When a disaster strikes, prior planning and clear decisive action can help save lives. The Allied Universal Training System by Universal Fire/Life Safety Services helps commercial buildings with compliance to fire life safety codes. Our interactive, building-specific e-learning training system motivates and rewards tenants instantly! It’s a convenient and affordable solution to all of the training needs of your building(s). Choosing our service cuts property management training related workloads by 90% and saves you over 50% compared to conventional training! More importantly, IT SAVES LIVES!

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