Emergency Evacuation & Fire Extinguishers

In the circumstance of a of fire, the first and the foremost step to be taken by the occupants are to immediately evacuate the place. Every building owner should follow an evacuation plan that includes both primary and a secondary evacuation passage. Sometimes the life of the occupants is at stake and it completely depends on the rescue team on how to implement the entire operation while fire engulfs an area or building. But in the case of the initial absence of a rescue team, you need to be abreast with the basics of evacuating an entire building, establish a designated area to meet outside the building and maintain the primary safety procedures. Be sure the safe spot selected is familiar with everyone and is far away from the affected zone.

Moreover, your evacuation plan should incorporate a warning call announcing the initiation or completion of evacuation procedure. Following a proper evacuation plan and having a reliable fire extinguisher, some smoke marks, a couple fire blankets, flashlights, communication devices, trauma kits, an a few search and rescue items to back you up. These emergency emergency supplies do not cost a lot but can certainly save a priceless life.

Evacuation Tips: Immediately leave the building after the call or alarm is sounded. Do not take risk of an immediate investigation if you are not trained enough. While leaving close all doors preventing the smoke, flames or choking odor to spread out. Never run, but walk swiftly to the closest exit out of the building. Do not re-enter into the fire-affected area before it is subdued. Assemble at the designated area. Never use the elevator in a hurry to exit the building as that may prove even more disastrous. Once the all residents leave the place the entire responsibility turns over to the first responders.

Nevertheless, proper training on the part of your team is highly commendable. The training should include fire safety basics along with a detailed knowledge on the types of fire extinguishers and their proper use. The training should also include the discretionary use of extinguishers with a controlled fire. The building owners and managers should go through the emergency evacuation and safety measures making sure that a safe escape has been provided to all. It depends on individual discretion on how efficiently we meet a challenging situation. It is also true that only a smart thought out process cannot help every time unless there is adequate safety equipments available to you.

Preventing Targeted School Shootings – Tips for Educators & Parents

As we approach the anniversary of the Columbine tragedy, it is still apparent that our nation’s schools are still in desperate need of formal threat assessment programs to help predict – and thereby prevent- targeted school violence. The first step in implementing your school’s (or district’s) program is to develop a formal threat assessment policy.

A solid policy should set a baseline that establishes what type of behavior will be assessed or investigated. It is important to remember that the key is not who makes a threat but rather who poses a threat. Your policy may be to investigate and assess every threat of violence, no matter how unlikely. However, you should never wait for a threat. Inappropriate behavior and communications, while not a threat, are often a much better predictor or violent behavior. An example of inappropriate behavior is demonstrated in this poem written and submitted to a teacher weeks before the author opened fire on his classmates and teachers: Sinking into bed Homicidal feelings fill my head Suicidal thoughts not gone but not fleeing Because it is other people’s death I’m seeing Suicide or Homicide Homicide or Suicide Into sleep I’m sinking Why me I am thinking Homicidal and suicidal thoughts intermixing I know my life’s not worth fixing.

Now matter what the media “experts” say, the behavioral process leading to violence is observable; if you are in a position to observe the behavior and you know what to look for. Teachers and counselors are almost always in the position to observe the indicators of this building process. That is why providing training in identifying pre-incident indicators is critical in the success of a good threat assessment program. By knowing what to look for and reporting indicators of violent behavior, teachers and counselors allow the system to work. Another important aspect of your policy is the development of a threat assessment team. This team can be comprised of administrators, school counselors, teachers, mental health professionals and law enforcement, and will review cases to determine if the student in question poses a threat and what course of action to take with the student. Case management is an often overlooked aspect of threat assessment. As Gavin de Becker points out in his book “The Gift of Fear”, an assessment is looking at a snap shot in time of that person’s life, as the person’s life changes (for better or worse) so does the assessment.

Threat assessment is certainly a new area for most school administrators, but there is help. The United States Secret Service has developed a school assessment program and Gavin de Becker, who is widely regarded a world leader in security and predictive behavior has a comprehensive system and several books on the subject of predicting violence.