Public Health Emergency Preparedness

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Public Health Emergency Preparedness


Are You Ready?

Disasters disrupt hundreds of thousands of lives every year and can occur at any time. The question is, will you and your family be ready when disaster strikes?  There are many things you and your family can do to prepare for a disaster like creating an emergency supplies kit, writing a family preparedness plan and practicing your plan, be informed about what might happen, and get involved in preparing your community.

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Awareness Month

November

Prevent Home Fires

 

Prevent Home Fires

Home fires can be preventable. The following are simple steps that each of us can take to prevent a tragedy.

a fireplace with a glass screen

Cooking

  • Stay in the kitchen when you are frying, grilling or broiling food. Turn off the stove if you leave the kitchen for even a short period of time.
  • Wear short, close-fitting or tightly rolled sleeves when cooking.
  • Position barbecue grills at least 10 feet away from siding and deck railings, and out from under eaves and overhanging branches.
  • Keep a fire extinguisher available.

Electrical and Appliance Safety

  • Frayed wires can cause fires. Replace all worn, old or damaged appliance cords immediately and do not run cords under rugs or furniture.
  • If an appliance has a three-prong plug, use it only in a three-slot outlet. Never force it to fit into a two-slot outlet or extension cord.
  • Immediately shut off, then professionally replace, light switches that are hot to the touch and lights that flicker.

Keeping Children Safe

  • Take the mystery out of fire play by teaching children that fire is a tool, not a toy.
  • Store matches and lighters out of children's reach and sight, preferably in a locked cabinet.
  • Never leave children unattended near operating stoves or burning candles, even for a short time.

Fireplaces and Woodstoves

  • Inspect and clean woodstove pipes and chimneys annually and check monthly for damage or obstructions.
  • Use a fireplace screen heavy enough to stop rolling logs and big enough to cover the entire opening of the fireplace to catch flying sparks.
  • Make sure the fire is completely out before leaving the house or going to bed.

Portable Space Heaters

  • Keep combustible objects at least three feet away from portable heating devices.
  • Only buy heaters evaluated by a nationally recognized laboratory, such as Underwriters Laboratories (UL).
  • Check to make sure the portable heater has a thermostat control mechanism and will switch off automatically if the heater falls over.
  • Only use crystal clear K-1 kerosene in kerosene heaters. Never overfill it. Use the heater in a well-ventilated room away from curtains and other flammable items.

More Fire Prevention Tips

  • Never use a stove range or oven to heat your home.
  • Keep combustible and flammable liquids away from heat sources.
  • Portable generators should NEVER be used indoors and should only be refueled outdoors and in well ventilated areas.

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PHEP Programs

Helpful Tools

State of Montana Public Health Partners        


Public Health emergencies can arise anywhere. Natural, technological, and human-caused disasters can impact Montana at any time. Public health hazards in Montana may result from communicable disease outbreaks, food and water contamination, chemical spills, wildland fires, and smoke, drought, flooding, earthquakes, tornadoes, and avalanches.

As part of the DPHHS Communicable Disease Control & Prevention Bureau, Montana's Public Health Emergency Preparedness works to help local and tribal health jurisdictions prepare for and respond to health emergencies, coordinate local surveillance and response systems, and keep Montana citizens informed of any public health-related emergencies.

Federal grant funds strengthen public health and hospital preparedness on a state, regional, and local level throughout Montana, with the majority of funds distributed to local and tribal health partners.

Our Mission Statement: DPHHS Emergency Preparedness program builds, supports, and strengthens resilience in both Montana communities and the Department through leadership and collaborative partnerships to effectively prepare for, respond to, and recover from adverse events that affect the public’s health.

If you have questions regarding the type of planning that this program participates in, please call 406-563-7863