Emergency Preparedness

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Emergency Preparedness

When a disaster hits emergency responders are often swamped by the multiple needs of the community. Search and rescue operations, food, water and medical attention for the survivors, management of shelters, ensuring the roads are safe, and even hands on management of a damaged power plant may all need to be managed by the local emergency responders. Clearly, responders can’t be everywhere for everyone all the time in a major disaster. Emergency preparedness for individuals means taking responsibility for your own needs before the disaster hits.

For people with hearing loss, that means making sure you not only have the water, food and first aid kit in your emergency kit, but also have back up equipment to ensure that you will be able to communicate whether you need to shelter in place during a power outage, or evacuate your home in advance of a hurricane. Whatever the emergency, it’s up to you to know what you need, and to be prepared.

For more information:

HLAA Participates in Consumer Product Safety Commission Smoke Alarm Survey Workshop

March 14, 2017

On February 16, HLAA District of Columbia Chapter Executive Committee Members Russell Misheloff and Lon Rosenman represented HLAA at a workshop hosted by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). The workshop, attended by more than 70 people, was held to solicit input for an upcoming survey on smoke alarms and carbon monoxide (CO) detectors in the home.

Russ and Lon provided valuable input for the design of the survey regarding the use, non-use, and/or misuse of smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors in private residences. The survey will be an update of an earlier one conducted on smoke alarms by CPSC in 1992. The new survey will include carbon monoxide detectors/alarms.

Russ reported that CPSC was receptive to including information about people with hearing loss, the challenges they face, and the implications for what kinds of devices and services they need. They provided input on the types of notification that smoke alarms and CO detectors provide (including both visual and tactile); the abilities (and limitations) of users to understand and appropriately respond to alarms delivered to audio, visual, and/or tactile alerts; and the placement of alarms. 

It appeared that many in the room were concerned about how to ensure that people with various disabilities can access the kind of devices they need and routinely maintain them, and that providers make such devices available. 

Thanks are due to Russ and Lon for attending this meeting on HLAA’s behalf!

Wireless RERC Releases Emergency Communications Survey Summary Report

April 18, 2011

A summary of the findings from the Wireless RERC's survey on emergency communications and people with disabilities conducted October 2010-January 2011 has now been posted on their website. The survey focused on 2 aspects of emergency communications:

  1. contacting 9-1-1 emergency services, and
  2. receiving and verifying public alerts such as weather advisories.

Citizen Corps News: FEMA Administrator Releases Preparedness Video Message

August 7, 2009

Note from HLAA: The FEMA website videos are available with captions. Click on the "cc" on the video window task bar for the fema.gov and YouTube videos. The Facebook video is not captioned, but does make the script from the video available on the site.

Release Date: August 4, 2009
Release Number: HQ-09-094a

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Administrator Craig Fugate today released a Web video message highlighting the need for the public to be prepared for any emergency.

"Our entire emergency management team has a role to play when it comes to preparing for and responding to the next disaster," said Administrator Fugate. "One of the most important parts of that team is the public. The more prepared the public is now, by getting an emergency response kit, making an emergency action plan, and getting a skill, like CPR, the stronger our emergency response team will be."

The Administrator's video can be found on the following websites:

Tips on how to be prepared, including how to make an emergency plan, and what should be in an emergency response kit, can be found at www.ready.gov .

Disclaimer: FEMA is providing the following links to FEMA's presence on other third party sites for your reference. FEMA does not endorse any non-government Websites, companies or applications.

FEMA's mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.

This news story and other Community Preparedness news, including Citizen Corps Bulletins, can be found on our website at www.citizencorps.gov .

The National Office of Citizen Corps
FEMA Community Preparedness Division

WGBH National Center for Accessible Media Emergency Management Survey Report

December 1, 2008

The WGBH-Carl and Ruth Shapiro Family National Center for Accessible Media announces the release of its "Emergency Management Survey Report", which conveys a broad sampling of the state of accessible emergency notification, and indicates opportunities to fill in known gaps and identify effective practices. The 10-page report summarizes challenges and opportunities in policies, roles and practices for accessible message development and dissemination.

The report was informed by NCAM's national web-based survey (conducted in summer 2008) to identify existing and planned practices to make emergency notifications accessible to people with sensory disabilities (people who are deaf, hard of hearing, blind, visually impaired, or deaf-blind). The survey queried over 200 stakeholders across public and private sectors, representing nearly every facet of the emergency notification arena and beyond.

The survey and report were conducted for NCAM's "Access to Emergency Alerts" grant project, funded by the U.S. Department of Commerce.

Hearing Loss Association of America Joins Other Consumer Organizations in Sending Comments to the FCC on How to Make the Nation's Emergency Alert System More effective for People with Hearing Loss

October 2004

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