Hazards: Building Collapses/Explosions

Threats, Hazards: Building Collapses/Explosions

Building collapses or explosions can result from structural damage, a gas leak, or sabotage. Either way, the set of rules below apply.

IF YOU ARE IN A BUILDING COLLAPSE OR EXPLOSION:

  • Get out as quickly and calmly as possible.
  • If you can’t get out of the building, get under a sturdy table or desk.

IF YOU ARE TRAPPED BY DEBRIS:

  • Cover your nose and mouth with a cloth or clothing.
  • Move around as little as possible to avoid kicking up dust, which is harmful to inhale.
  • If possible, use a flashlight so that you can see your surroundings.
  • Tap on a pipe or wall so rescuers can hear where you are. Use a whistle if one is available. Shout only as a last resort as shouting can cause you to inhale dangerous amounts of dust.

IF YOU CLEAN UP DEBRIS:

  • Wear gloves and sturdy shoes.
  • Sort debris by type (wood, appliances, etc.).
  • Do not touch debris that has utility wires in it.
  • Do not move debris that is too large or too heavy. Ask for help from neighbors, friends, and recovery workers.

IF THERE IS A FIRE:

  • Fires often occur after a building explosion. 

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