Surviving Building Collapse
There are a number of things that
can cause a building to collapse, and the one on most people’s minds now would
be terrorism. Using bombs to destroy a building, usually occupied, has
unfortunately become a favorite method of those interested in disrupting
society and causing casualties. An explosion can also occur as a result
aking gas. This is the reason why if you do smell gas, it is
important to leave the building as quickly as possible.
Make sure to always have a survival kit made for an office.
there are other factors, besides explosions that can cause a building to
collapse. One of the greatest will be
earthquakes, as one of high
magnitude will be capable of destroying nearly any building not specially
designed to resist it. Hurricanes can cause such high winds that homes
can actually be flattened by them. Tornadoes are even more destructive
and there can be literally nothing left by a pile of rubble once the tornado
What To Do If The Building Begins To Collapse
There will generally be little or no warning that a collapse is imminent, but
the most important things to do are to stay calm and get out of the building as
quickly as possible. Do not hesitate to go out a window if that is the
nearest exit. If you are in a building with an elevator, do not use the
elevator, use the stairs. If you are at home or work, grab your emergency
disaster bag if you have one as you leave. Make sure your office has a
first aid kit in case you do have to wait for help from a firefighter or paramedic.
If You Cannot Get Out
A sudden building collapse may seal any exits and leave you trapped in the building.
This is definitely not a time to panic, you will have to use all your mental
resources to preserve yourself. Look around for a sturdy piece of
furniture such as a heavy desk, sofa, or armchair. However, do not get
under these, rather position yourself next to them, lying on the floor with
your head protected by your arms. This will put you into the ‘triangle of
life’, a spot where it is unlikely that debris will strike you. The
furniture will be able to support a collapsing wall or ceiling and create a
space adjacent to it where you will be relatively safe. You may be
injured, but the chances are that you will come out of the wreckage alive.
There will likely be quite a bit of dust from the collapse, so try to cover
your mouth, eyes, and nose with a handkerchief or some of your clothing.
Dust and smoke can be harmful, so keeping these out of your system as much as
possible is important. Because of the dust, keep as still as possible to
keep from stirring up more.
Rescuers will be searching for you right away, so let them know that you are
trapped by tapping on a wall or floor or pipe. If, by chance, you have a
whistle, use that. Do not shout unless absolutely necessary to avoid
getting more dust into your lungs. A flashlight is also handy for