It’s funny how when we watch an emergency situation on TV; we know exactly how to behave. Whether we are used to the writing tricks of the screen or whether we feel safer because the emergency isn’t real, it’s hard to say. But emergency situations in films seem a lot easier to handle than in real life. If it’s a zombie invasion, you’re already shouting at the top of your voice to the main character to aim for the head. Power cut in the haunted mansion? You already know the answer; whatever happens, people should never get separated. There’s no point denying it: TV emergencies are easy to deal with. In real life, things can get a lot more complicated, especially because it can seem difficult to define what an emergency is, without mentioning how to decide on the best behaviour to follow.
What’s an emergency?
First things first, let’s check the real definition of emergency when it doesn’t involve a zombie attack or a haunted mansion. According to Wikipedia.com, a situation that presents an immediate risk to health, life, property/transport or environment is called an emergency. What is interesting to note is that the emergency doesn’t have to be of a life-threatening nature, but it can threaten life or many lives if it escalates without a response. In other words, an emergency is a situation that requires immediate intervention to protect the health, life, property, and environment. In most cases, there are governmental and institutional agencies whose main role is to prevent emergencies and protect lives, such as emergency medical experts or even the fire brigade. But that doesn’t mean that they are the only actors that can intervene in an emergency situation. Knowing what to do to help others and to stay safe in a difficult situation is equally important.
Your health is precious. Therefore, you don’t want to take any risk with it. While not all health emergencies are life-threatening, they all need to be addressed with the same concern and effective behaviour. Lack of care or interest can escalate things rapidly into an uncomfortable or more dramatic situation. When it comes to health, you need to be attentive to the signs of your body but also to those of the people around you. Young children and seniors are more likely to suffer from lasting damages resulting from a small issue, such as a fall, than active adults are. In fact, around 2.5 million seniors have to go to the ER because of a fall. Falls weaken the body dramatically over the age of 65 and can lead people to become isolated and prone to falling again in future. Every year seniors fall to their death, from the top of the stairs, against the corner of a table, etc. So it’s your responsibility to ensure that their home is safe.
Unfortunately, some health emergencies can be life-threatening and require immediate action to save a life. In case of an accident, it’s common practice to check for injuries and dial 999 or 112 for an ambulance. But there are other things you can do that can help to save a life, namely basic first aid gestures. The top priorities are referred to as ABC for Airway, Breathing, and Circulation. If the person injured is unresponsive, you need to open their airway either in the position they’re in or by moving them gently on their back if there’s no spinal cord injury, then tilt their head back to open the throat. Breathing seems obvious enough, and the only way you can – if necessary – help is by knowing the CPR technique. Circulation, finally, refers to the airflow and also needs CPR in case of problems.
Emergency situations that put the life at risk seem to be the common definition of any emergency, from a car crash to a natural disaster. Natural disasters, however, pose a much more severe threat and leave lasting damages for hundreds of people. Hurricane Irma, for instance, tears through Puerto Rico, Florida, the Caribbean and Barbuda island. For Barbuda, the government estimates the destruction at 90% or more, which leaves the population without any protection. Buildings, houses, and hotels have been destroyed in the path of Irma’s 185mph winds and heavy downpours. There is very little that can be done to protect life, but offering shelters and going out to help those who need it when possible make a difference. Helping in any way you can helps to save many lives.
In most natural disasters or catastrophic situations with one of the four elements, the majority of damage occurs when people don’t know how to react. Death by fire, for instance, is still too common because too many individuals react badly in an emergency situation. The lack of smoke alarm detectors and extinguishers is the first cause of casualties. Another common problem is when people try to retrieve their identity documents and precious belongings before exiting the building.
Property / Transport
Home and car maintenance is not something that you should do for the sake of keeping things tidy. It’s a matter of self-preservation. For example, with cars, there’s a difference between a breakdown and an emergency repair. However as too many drivers take too little interest in their car, they rarely can make the difference. It’s important to understand your car so that you can handle most of the common emergency alerts from your vehicle. You need an emergency kit, which consists of tools and the car manual. Knowing the meaning of the warning lights can save your life in the long term. When the oil light on goes on it’s a sign that the engine has low oil pressure. Your motor could explode if you don’t add oil rapidly. The brake light signifies that the brakes are damaged, so test the brake pedal and the brake fluid. In most cases, you can proceed to the repairs yourself, if you’ve got the right tools. However, some repairs need to be done professionally and can be costly. You might even need an emergency loan from NewHorizons.co.uk to be able to keep the car on the road. One thing you should do, though, is not to postpone car repairs. For instance, if the Airbag light is on or the engine light, you will need to get these fixed as soon as possible. A faulty airbag can’t protect you, and a faulty engine can cause an accident.
According to ThoughCo.com, even the smallest climate changes can affect the wildlife population severely. It might not sound like an emergency, but global warming is gradually leading the extinction of hundreds of species. 80% of the wildlife species samples by research are showing signs of stress as a result of climate change. As they do, inevitably human beings and plants will also suffer, and – who knows? – risk extinction too. So, now more than ever it’s important to get involved, not only to save the planet but to save yourself and future generations from certain death. Helping the planet to survive is about changing your consumption habits to reduce your carbon print and your energy usage. A green life, with renewables and bio products, is not just a trendy lifestyle for hipsters. It’s a matter of survival. It’s a matter of emergency, for you and for your children.
In conclusion, it’s everyone’s responsibility to face emergency situations that threaten the health, life, property/transport, and environment. The more you care, the more you can help to save lives and to build a safer world for the future generations. So, stop what you’re doing, this is an emergency situation. Learn the right gestures to save yourself and others.