After the Storm

You may still be in danger once a serious storm is over. Take the following steps to protect yourself.

  • Check the reports being broadcast on your radio or television and follow instructions.
  • Give first aid to people who are injured or trapped. Get help, if necessary.
  • Unless you are asked to help or are qualified to give assistance, please stay away from damaged areas.
  • Do not go near loose or dangling power lines. Report them and any broken sewer and water mains to the authorities.
  • Lightning and downed power lines can cause fires. Report fires to the fire department. Know how to fight small fires.
  • Water supplies may be contaminated so purify your water by boiling it for 10 minutes or by adding water-purification tablets or by adding one drop of unscented chlorine bleach to one litre of water (three drops for cloudy water).
  • If you use chlorine bleach to purify the water, stir the bleach in and wait 30 minutes before drinking. The water should have a slight chlorine smell.
  • Leave the telephone lines free for official use. Do not use the telephone except in real emergencies.
  • Drive cautiously and only if necessary. Debris, broken power lines and washed-out roads and bridges make driving difficult after a severe storm. Give way to emergency vehicles at all times.
  • If the power has been off for several hours, check the food in your refrigerator and freezer to see if it has spoiled.

More information about after the storm