Learn How to Prepare for an Upcoming Evacuation
At Evacuscape, we believe that it’s everyone’s right to evacuate safely in an emergency. That’s why we created the Evacuscape chairs. These internationally renowned products are of high quality and can safely carry a weight of up to 180kg/400lbs.
They come with a 10-year warranty for the frame and a 1-year warranty for all wheels, tracks and braking system components. They’re also easily trainable and are bundled with a training DVD.
Our Evacuscape chairs are particularly useful for Persons with Reduced Mobility (PRM), especially if they need to exit quickly down stairs in a potentially dangerous situation. Various statistics suggest that disabled and bedridden individuals are at a greater risk of injury or death in the event of a disaster like a fire. Our escape chair can be used to help seniors, the physically disabled, injured individuals, pregnant women, and individuals with mobility tools in emergencies.
If you may need to evacuate in a few days due to a raging forest fire, hurricane, flood or any other disaster, then you should use your time to prepare.
Start by identifying where you will go. If you need to go out of town, then note down the addresses and phone numbers of friends and family in the target area in a physical diary. Likewise, carry a physical map and learn how to use it in case networks are offline or you can’t charge your devices because of a power outage. Plan multiple routes in case of roadblocks due to traffic or the disaster itself.
Create an escape plan should you have to evacuate suddenly. Discuss the plan with all members of the household. Take extra precautions for children and Persons with Reduced Mobility (PRM). In multistoried homes, our evacuation chair can be an important tool. They can also be easily carried in a vehicle and used as a transport chair.
Keep up with the latest news on local stations. Don’t stay at home if your community has been ordered to evacuate. It’s just not worth the risk.
Store essential items in your evacuation bag. Make sure you have a first aid kit, whistle, photographs, passports and other important documents, drinking water, cash, phone charger, flashlight, and laptops. If you have a desktop at home, then back up important data to the cloud or a portable hard drive if time allows.
For the elderly, take all prescription medication, extra dentures, and any mobility aids such as canes, walkers, or raised toilet set. For children carry favourite toys or entertainment devices. Your family may also need to take food, water, clothing, trash bags and personal hygiene products such as soap, toothpaste, toothbrushes, toilet paper, hand sanitizer, pampers, and baby wipes.
If you’re going to be driving, then make sure that your vehicle is in operational condition. Check the spare tire and get it patched up if necessary. Your vehicle should have a small fire extinguisher, road flares, triangle reflectors, jumper cables, tool kit, and some extra coolant and motor oil if it’s in for a long journey. Remember, the gas station may be crowded, so keep your tank half full to avoid wasting precious time in a queue. If you need transportation, then don’t hesitate to get help from disaster relief services.
If you must travel in multiple vehicles, then designate a safe meeting point in case you split up. Make sure that everyone has the address and phone number of the meeting point.
In general, there are many vital steps a landlord or building manager can take to improve safety for seniors and other vulnerable people living in any multistory building.
- Mobility: Enforce strict rules so that people don’t leave potential fall hazards in the entrance, elevators or hallways. This can mean no bags, shoes, or mats lying around in common areas.
- Lighting: High traffic areas of the building should be well lit to accommodate those with weaker eyesight or mobility issues.
- Camera monitoring: The building should have around-the-clock security with camera monitoring to ensure safety.
- Maintenance: Carpets should be kept clean and replaced if torn in case they turn into fall hazards
- Upkeep: Seasonal upkeep should be performed regularly in the outer areas of the building. The grass should be trimmed in the warmer months and snow must be regularly removed during the winter.
Likewise, fire safety protocols must be followed. Each building can ensure a safe evacuation for its residents with reduced mobility by having escape chairs at vital locations. Remember, our chairs are collapsible and can be easily stored near emergency exits and staircases on the wall brackets they ship with.
They have solid padded seats and backrests to make evacuees feel comfortable, and a speed reducing V belt track, lap safety belt and head restraint strap and locking rear wheel castors to ensure a safe evacuation. Our chairs also help building owners follow safety standards like Section 125 of the Canada Labour Code, Part II.
Aside from having evacuation chairs, every building should also adopt the following safety measures:
- Smoke Detectors: In many localities, it’s either the responsibility of the landlord to make sure working smoke detectors are installed on a property. The landlord should test smoke alarms annually and replace batteries or the alarm itself when necessary.
- Carbon Monoxide Detector: This gas is especially dangerous because it’s odourless, colourless, and tasteless. The best way to protect residents is to install a carbon monoxide detector. Options include 2-in-1 detectors that can detect smoke and carbon monoxide.
- Water Sprinkler: These devices are a great line of defence against fires. They activate when any excessive heat is detected. While they may not release enough water to extinguish a fire, they provide enough suppression to give residents an important escape window.
- Fire Fighting Tools: Every building should have a fire extinguisher and a fire hose placed in strategic locations. Sometimes, the quick actions of a proactive individual with the right tools can stop a fire because it turns into a tragic disaster.
- Training: All residents in a building should be trained to react safely and calmly in a fire. The correct procedures and save lives and prevent destruction.
Although an evacuation can be an anxious time, with a little preparedness, the chances of survival can improve greatly. The right tools like our escape chair can come in especially handy for those who need more assistance.