In Time of Emergency eBook

Office of Civil Defense
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 73 pages of information about In Time of Emergency.

In a shelter, it is especially important to be sanitary in the storing, handling and eating of food, so as to avoid digestive upsets or other more serious illness, and to avoid attracting vermin.  Be sure to: 

—­Keep all food in covered containers.

—­Keep cooking and eating utensils clean.

—­Keep all garbage in a closed container, or dispose of it outside the home when it is safe to go outside.  If possible, bury it.  Avoid letting garbage or trash accumulate inside the shelter, both for fire and sanitation reasons.


In many home shelters, people would have to use emergency toilets until it was safe to leave shelter for brief periods of time.

An emergency toilet, consisting of a watertight container with a snug-fitting cover, would be necessary.  It could be a garbage container, or a pail or bucket.  If the container is small, a larger container, also with a cover, should be available to empty the contents into for later disposal.  If possible, both containers should be lined with plastic bags.

This emergency toilet could be fitted with some kind of seat, especially for children or elderly persons.  Or it may be possible to remove the seat from a wooden chair, cut a hole in it, and place the container underneath.  For privacy, the toilet could be screened from view.

Every time someone uses the toilet, he should pour or sprinkle into it a small amount of regular household disinfectant, such as creosol or chlorine bleach, to keep down odors and germs.  After each use, the lid should be put back on.

When the toilet container needs to be emptied, and outside radiation levels permit, the contents should be buried outside in a hole 1 or 2 feet deep.  This would prevent the spread of disease by rats and insects.

If the regular toilets inside the home—­or the sewer lines—­are not usable for any reason, an outside toilet should be built when it is safe to do so.

If anyone has been outside and fallout particles have collected on his shoes or clothing, they should be brushed off before he enters the shelter area again.

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1.  Follow the normal fire prevention rules given in this chapter.

2.  Keep on hand at home the basic fire fighting tools mentioned in this chapter.


1.  Close doors, windows, venetian blinds, shades, and drapes in your house.

2.  Unless otherwise advised, fill buckets and other containers with water, for emergency fire fighting as well as other purposes.

3.  If a fire should occur, fight it promptly, following the recommended

Project Gutenberg
In Time of Emergency from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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