Oct 28, 2013

Disaster Preparedness Planning for Your Business

Businesses can do much to prepare for the impact of the many hazards they face in today’s world including natural hazards like floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes and widespread serious illness such as the H1N1 flu virus pandemic. Human-caused hazards include accidents, acts of violence by people and acts of terrorism. Examples of technology-related hazards are the failure or malfunction of systems, equipment or software.
Ready Business will assist businesses in developing a preparedness program by providing tools to create a plan that addresses the impact of many hazards. This website and its tools utilize an “all hazards approach” and follows the program elements within National Fire Protection Association 1600, Standard on Disaster/Emergency Management and Business Continuity Programs. NFPA 1600 is an American National Standard and has been adopted by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
The five steps in developing a preparedness program are:
  • Program Management
    • Organize, develop and administer your preparedness program
    • Identify regulations that establish minimum requirements for your program
  • Planning
    • Gather information about hazards and assess risks 
    • Conduct a business impact analysis (BIA)
    • Examine ways to prevent hazards and reduce risks
  • Implementation
    Write a preparedness plan addressing:
    • Resource management
    • Emergency response
    • Crisis communications
    • Business continuity
    • Information technology
    • Employee assistance
    • Incident management
    • Training
  • Testing and Exercises
    • Test and evaluate your plan
    • Define different types of exercises
    • Learn how to conduct exercises
    • Use exercise results to evaluate the effectiveness of the plan
  • Program Improvement
    • Identify when the preparedness program needs to be reviewed
    • Discover methods to evaluate the preparedness program
    • Utilize the review to make necessary changes and plan improvements
This article was taken from Ready/FEMA and further information can be found at http://www.ready.gov/business.

Oct 27, 2013

Tips For Teaching Kids Survival Skills

Written by: Pat B Extreme Survival 

As I write this here in Missouri, rabbit season opens in just four short days. Time to break out the shotguns and give them a good preseason cleaning and checkup. The kids and I will be attending to this business over the next couple of days, and soon rabbit will be back on the menu. We have spent the summer months watching the rabbit population grow, and the girls in particular have been charting out the best locations to find their quarry when opening day comes.
I am proud of my kids for this. They are showing that they have grasped and grabbed hold of at least some of the survival skills that my wife and I have tried to impart upon them. First, they have recognized where food comes from — that cute and fuzzy can also be nourishing and tasty. They have taken time to watch their surroundings, to use tracking and observation to increase their odds of success in the pursuit of wild game. They are bold and unhesitant in their desire to put wild food on the table. In short, they are learning to live with and not just in their surroundings.
Hunting is a valuable survival skill, but it really isn’t the key to a long-term survival situation. When the chips are down, everybody and his brother will turn to the woods and game will be depleted rapidly. The skills, however, that will be honed in my children by hunting will last long after the game is gone.
By hunting, kids develop proficiency with weapons and familiarity with the damage that they can do, and through this they develop respect for their weapons. They learn to be tuned into their surroundings, to let nature tell them when subtle things have changed. They learn to track, to stalk, and to ambush, and to not be seen by the objects of their pursuit. They learn to see the world around them with clarity and precision, to grasp the little details. Basically, they are developing situational awareness while bearing arms, and developing skills that would serve well in escape and evasion; they are learning to be survivors.
Through the sport of hunting, a large number of skills applicable to survival situations are developed. This is the best tactic to take when teaching survival
skills to kids. Find activities that are fun and engaging while at the same time growing a skill set. Don’t focus on drilling in survival skills but let them grow naturally from genuine interests.
Learn the secrets of a veteran hunter as he shows you how to quickly and efficiently field-dress your game
Camping is another great activity to develop survival skills. Not the modern motor home full of electronics variety of camping, but the “Hey, grab your gear, we’re sleeping out at the pond tonight!” kind of camping. On small adventures like these your kids can learn skills like shelter-building. Don’t bring a tent; press their creativity by challenging them to create shelter with the tools in their kit and the materials in their environment. Guide them in the process of creating a shelter from a poncho and paracord, in how to build a debris shelter, and in properly backing a fire to reflect heat into the shelter. Guide them through fire-building using a fire steel and tinder, and let them learn campfire cooking with hotdogs and marshmallows. At late-night camp fires they can begin to get an appreciation of watch standing, listening to the night sounds around them. Your kids can also relearn the ancient art of enjoying the company of their family and not relying on a computerized box to tell them when they are having fun. Notice I said “guide,” not “instruct”? Above all these should be fun times, not boot camp. Lessons learned with a happy heart become fond memories, and fond memories last a lifetime.
Through activities like hunting and impromptu camping, your kids will develop the skills that will give them the confidence to face the initial stages of a crisis on their own, should the need arise. Make sure that they become familiar with every piece of gear you give them, and that they are able to recognize and meet their needs of shelter, food and water.
There is a common misconception in the world at large that preppers are afraid of something. If you’re a prepper, it is imperative that you not foster fear in your kids. The reality is that prepping is one of the bravest things a person can do. Preppers make the bold statement that “I will be OK no matter what!” If you think about it at all, you will realize that it takes a lot more courage to face the challenges that may lie ahead honestly rather than saying “Nothing can happen here, and even if it does someone will help me.” If you’re a prepper, make sure your kids know that you don’t prep because of fear, but because you are not afraid to face any challenge and you are confident in the family’s ability to get through anything. Your kids won’t have to fear anything if they are ready for anything.
With this in mind, involve your kids in all your preps. Make sure that they are aware of the food supplies you have laid in, and how to use them. Cooking with storage foods is an essential survival skill, so let them make a meal from time to time. Better still, let them develop cooking skills on deserts! Anyone who can make a Dutch oven cobbler with home canned apples and freshly ground wheat flour isn’t going to survive, they are going to thrive. Cobbler is a great side effect of effective survival training, and it falls neatly into the fond memories category. Involve them in all aspects of your gardening and animal husbandry, here again they will learn through experience, and should these skills become a matter of life and death they will already be familiar.
Teaching survival skills and involving the whole family offers many great bonding opportunities. These shared experiences and pursuit of common goals strengthen the foundations and decorate the rooms of family unity. It can also be a lot of fun. Remember that kids deserve to be kids. Fear should never be a part of their training, and even serious business can be undertaken with a light-hearted spirit. Knowledge and skills gained in love will last your kids a lifetime and give them strength and peace in troubled times.
Enhanced by Zemanta

Oct 9, 2013

18 Things Navy SEALs Won't Leave Home Without

18 Things Navy SEALs Won't Leave Home Without 

 (link to Orig article)

In his book, he details getting ready for deployment in Norfolk, Va., when he asks a more experienced SEAL what he should bring. The senior SEAL stopped, looked at his new teammate and said: "Dude, what do you think you need to bring for deployment? Load it ... Bring what you think you need."

The U.S. nabbed the Al Qaeda leader believed to be behind the 1998 embassy attacks in Africa on Saturday.
On the same day, a Navy SEAL team raided a house full of Al-Shabab militants two weeks after the terror group's deadly attack on a Nairobi shopping mall.
We think it's safe to say that America's elite — the Navy SEALs — have been keeping busy.
Thanks to Matt Bissonette, a SEAL that was on the Bin Laden raid and wrote the book 'No Easy Day,' we know what they likely brought with them.
In his book, he details getting ready for deployment in Norfolk, Va., when he asks a more experienced SEAL what he should bring.
The senior SEAL stopped, looked at his new teammate and said: "Dude, what do you think you need to bring for deployment? Load it ... Bring what you think you need."
The following list is what Bissonnette said, in the book, he needed.
Their brain buckets: No matter what, every soldier wears one.
Even the tiniest fragment, the smallest piece of high-velocity hot metal, can enter through soft tissue and puncture your brain—which may often leave fellow troops guessing as to what caused the death.
It's an absolute essential.
Night Vision Goggles that can range in price from about $3,000 all the way to $65,000
Night Vision Goggles are integral to a SEAL's night assault tactics. Being able to see when your enemy cannot is a huge advantage.
Unfortunately, none of us can get our hands on Navy SEAL NVG's, but we can buy declassified, older technology.
If you do buy a pair, just don't try to leave the country with them—we've heard customs doesn't take kindly to transferring such equipment across national borders.
Body armor plates are able to stop up to three AK-47 rounds, but are only guaranteed to stop one
Some SEALs go "slick," and remove their plates, depending on different scenarios.
Factors like how far they're traveling, what kind of mission, etc., SEALs may just not wear them.
In "No Easy Day," Bissonnette says to a buddy: "If I get shot, don't tell my mom I wasn't wearing these plates."
Body armor plate carriers offer protection and are handy for storing all manner of necessary items
SEALs will surely have one of these.
Plate carriers help SEALs carry a few of the next 17 things. Surprisingly, plate carriers don't always carry plates.
Suppressors are important to keep SEALs from giving themselves away
via dvidshub.net
In the raid on the Al-Shabab compound, it's been reported the SEALs were using suppressed weapons before a firefight broke out.
Suppressors — commonly referred to as "silencers" — generally sacrifice a little muzzle velocity and power for a more quiet kill.
They reduce the exit of gasses and the flash from the muzzle. Silencer is a misnomer -- they're not totally silent, but nonetheless Bissonnette makes several references to killing sleeping Taliban fighters without waking up the guys in the next room.
Suppressors and "mufflers" for cars were not only designed at the same time, but based off the same principle.
Modified, customized M-4 rifles customized to the task
Heckler and Koch (HK) is the the preferred manufacturer of Matt Bissonnette's weapons; they are the Rolls Royce of assault rifles. Plan to part with about $4,000 for one of these, and another $3,000 for a customization kit. A small price to pay though for looking super cool and making all of your friends jealous.
The 45 caliber handgun has a ton of stopping power
via YouTube
Again, Heckler and Koch manufactures some of the best in the biz.
The 45 Caliber Compact (M45C) weighs less than 2 lbs. with the magazine, which carries 10 rounds of 45 ACP ammunition. Small, light, and reliable. The 45 already has a reliable amount of stopping power, but if you couple it with hollow point shells, well ... two hits—round hitting perpetrator, perp hitting ground.
The M79 Grenade Launcher is a "one-and-done" reloader which lobs live grenades at the enemy in a distinctive arc
via YouTube
The "Pirate Gun" or "Thumper" — Matt Bissonnette details a tool SEALs use called the M79 Grenade Launcher, customized with a shorter barrel and a old-school stock, making it look like something Captain Hook would use.
Grenades from the M79 come in all different flavors:
- Flachette (little missiles that look like nails)
- Illumination
- Fragmentation
- Smoke
- Buckshot

Sights offer a huge advantage, especially if shooting from above
via dvidshub
Anyone familiar with using a scope—they're popular among hunters—knows that scopes need to be meticulously maintained and calibrated.
The slightest bump against a tree, rock, or car door, will throw off the "zero" of the sight, leaving the shooter to use "Kentucky Windage," to land rounds on target.
Kentucky Windage is when a shooter knows his sight is low, so he'll put the crosshairs above where he wants to land his shot.

Grenades are essential for clearing rooms and reaching behind walls
via dvidshub
The M67 hand grenade has a kill radius of 5 meters (15 feet) and a casualty radius of 15 meters (45 feet), but can send pieces of piping hot metal as far as 250 feet.
Oftentimes, it isn't fragmentation that kills the enemy, but the rapid expansion of air pressure.
For example, thrown in a room, enemies might be able to hide from the blast, but the rapid compression of air through the ears will cause massive, instantaneous brain damage.

Fixed-blade knives for taking down an enemy when even a suppressor is too loud
via YouTube
Marines and soldiers on the ground carry the Multipurpose Bayonet; a six inch blade with a hoop on the hilt that allows for troops to affix the blade to their rifles, a technique which seems a little outdated.
Navy SEALs ditch the general issue and grab Daniel Winkler fixed-blade weapons. Again, the Rolls Royce of blades.
Winkler is most famous for producing the blades used in the movie "Last of the Mohicans."
(No wonder they decided to call Osama Bin Laden "Geronimo.")
Bolt cutters can get SEALs into places like nothing else can
via dvidshub
Bolt cutters come in many shapes and sizes, but if I had to guess, I think SEALs would probably use something along the lines of the ULine 36 inch variety.
Matt says he had them stuffed in a bag attached to his back, and he was able to reach them kind of like a sword, from over his shoulder.
Also, the 3-foot version has the sort of leverage a SEAL would need to quickly cut through a master lock or thick fencing.
Breaching charges [smaller than in picture] can take a solid steel door right off its hinges 
via dvidshub
This is obviously a custom breaching charge, and these guys are obviously not under any duress whatsoever.
SEALs probably carry small pieces of customized detonation cord, that they can wrap around a doorknob or around the frame of a door.
Fuses, more often that not, are the "smoke" pull-fuses and are probably timed out to anywhere from 10 to 30 seconds depending on the size of the charge.
A small point and shoot camera is essential for capturing evidence
via YouTube
You can pick one of these up at Best Buy for one-hundred-bucks, but SEALs in all likelihood get these in general issue.
The cameras are small, durable, and can fit inside the shoulder pocket. More importantly, they can take hundreds of high resolution photos in a matter of minutes.
Documents, reconnaissance, even pictures of dead enemies.

Chem lights and IR Chemlights are essential for marking territory
via dvidshub
Troops have been using IR signals on Humvee and personnel since both invasions. Only visible to NVG's, IR allows Coalition forces to communicate in the pitch dark.
All purpose tools like a Gerber save lives in combat
via YouTube
Capable of pulling metal out of flesh, or customizing improvisational weapons, all purpose tools are every soldier's sidekick.
Kind of like a Swiss Army Knife that doubles as a set of pliers, wire cutters, and wire strippers. Generally, soldiers either get these issued or buy higher-grade versions themselves. And, just as generally, many of them never use the tools except to open those pesky Meals Ready to Eat out in the field.
Regardless, they come in handy.
Two tourniquets, because everybody has two femoral arteries, and it only takes severing one to die on the battlefield
Tourniquets are cheap, and can be attached straight to body armor.
Troops are so well-trained in the use of tourniquets that many apply their own before a corpsman or medic can even reach them.
On the battlefield years ago, soldiers would only use them in the worst cases; cutting off the blood to a limb has dire consequences after a few hours.
But leaps in Medevac capabilities have led troops to rely on tourniquets as the surest way to stop bleeding. Medical advances have also extended the amount of time an injured soldier can leave one on—surgeons can save limbs after upward of 8 hours cut off from blood flow.
And finally — water. No SEAL will leave the wire without ample supplies because they never know how long they may be away from the base
via dvidshub
Usually they'll carry what's called a "Camelback," which is a bladder-like water carrier often seen strapped to soldiers' backs.
Lately though, troops have been carrying hard plastic water bottles, because the rigors of combat have been damaging the soft-skinned camelbacks.
Generally SEALs stick to the camelbacks because the water bottles make noise - "Swift, Silent, Deadly," it's a Marine Recon motto, but I think the SEALs would agree.

Sep 11, 2013

The Red Cross

The Red Cross offers plenty of information on every type of disaster. It is worth viewing their site because it has the different techniques for each scenario and they have the items for each situation for sale, all in one place. The first link is the information for each disaster, and the second is to where the items can be purchased.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Aug 28, 2013

U.S. States Wildly Unprepared for Disasters, Outbreaks, Emergencies



U.S. States Wildly Unprepared for Disasters, Outbreaks, Emergencies 






 An Article from Naturalnews.com by J.D. Heyes

  (NaturalNews) Residents of New Jersey, New York and other Atlantic states recently ravaged by superstorm Sandy know better than almost every other American that their states were simply not adequately prepared for the carnage visited upon them by a once-in-a-lifetime weather event. That said, several other states are equally unprepared for such storms - or a host of other man-made or natural disasters, despite federal and state governments having spent hundreds of billions "preparing" for such emergencies since the 9/11 attacks.

A new report finds that two states - Kansas and Montana - are particularly unprepared, while some others, notably Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, Wisconsin and Vermont, have done a better job of maintaining a state of readiness.

'It's a grim reckoning'

Recently a pair of nonprofit organizations released a report entitled, "Ready or Not?", a 79-page analysis of public health preparedness, which measured the ability of local hospitals, departments of health and other agencies to prevent or

respond to emergencies ranging from major influenza outbreaks, large weather events, bioterrorism or other natural disasters like major tornadoes or earthquakes.

"It's a grim reckoning," Reuters reported. "The assessment is based on how many of 10 key benchmarks a state met, such as whether it holds drills to make sure public health workers can respond quickly to, say, a catastrophic release of radiation, and whether its labs can work overtime to identify a mystery disease."

According to the report no state met all 10 benchmarks, but clearly some did better than others. This year, 35 states met less than seven of the 10; only five met eight of 10.

Two years ago, by contrast, more states did better overall: 17 met at least nine of the benchmarks in 2010 and 25 met seven or eight; no state met fewer than five benchmarks.

"The report found that while there has been significant progress toward improving public health preparedness over the past 10 years, particularly in core capabilities, there continue to be persistent gaps in the country's ability to respond to health emergencies, ranging from bioterrorist threats to serious disease outbreaks to extreme weather events," said said the analysis by the Trust for America's Health and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

"In the past decade, there have been a series of significant health emergencies, including extreme weather events, a flu pandemic and foodborne outbreaks," said Dr. Jeffrey Levi, president of the Trust for America's Health. "But, for some reason, as a country, we haven't learned that we need to bolster and maintain a consistent level of health emergency preparedness. Investments made after September 11th, the anthrax attacks and Hurricane Katrina led to dramatic improvements, but now budget cuts and complacency are the biggest threats we face."

The report said funding cuts which states have implemented in the wake of the 2008-09 recession have hurt readiness overall.

Shrinking budgets have led to a reduction in preparedness

In particular, the report found:

-- Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, Vermont and Wisconsin scored highest overall, meeting eight of 10 benchmarks, while Kansas and Montana only met three. Nevada, Colorado, Georgia, Hawaii and New Jersey were in the next-lowest tier.

-- Alabama, Arkansas, California, Delaware, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, North Dakota and Virginia met seven of the 10 measurements.

-- Twenty-nine states have cut public health funding from fiscal years 2010 through 2012, "with 23 states cutting funds for a second year in a row and 15 for three consecutive years," a summary of the report says.

-- Federal funds for state and local preparedness have also fallen - 38 percent from FY 2005-2012 (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention funds, which have been adjusted for inflation).

-- Several states have reported that gains made in overall preparedness after the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks are eroding, "and since 2008, budget cuts have resulted in more than 45,700 job losses at state and local health departments."

-- Only two states met the national goal of vaccinating 90 percent of young children 19-36 months old against pertussis (whooping cough); this year Washington state is dealing with one of the worst pertussis outbreaks in recent history.

"Public health preparedness has improved leaps and bounds from where we were 10 years ago," said Paul Kuehnert, MS RN Director of the Public Health Team at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. "But severe budget cuts at the federal, state and local levels threaten to undermine that progress. We must establish a baseline of 'better safe than sorry' preparedness that should not be crossed."

As we saw in the aftermath of super-sized Hurricane Sandy (and, really, countless natural disasters prior to Sandy), you can't rely on some government agency to save you, and this latest report confirms. Preparedness is an individual responsibility.





Learn more: http://www.naturalnews.com/038608_disaster_preparedness_emergencies_states.html#ixzz2dGUefYy6

How to Make a Water Filter

Although there are many ways to make your own water filter, 

I liked the simplicity and accessibility of this one.