From industrial chemicals and toxic waste to household detergents and cleaners, hazardous materials are part of our everyday lives. A hazardous material is any item or agent that has the potential to cause harm to you or your family. Make sure you and your family are safe, know what to do in the event you are alerted of a hazardous situation.
- Keep products in their original containers and never store hazardous products in food containers.
- Never mix household hazardous chemicals or waste with other products as they might react, ignite, or explode.
- Never smoke while using household chemicals.
- Never use hair spray, cleaning solutions, paint products, or pesticides near an open flame.
- Dispose of hazardous materials correctly.
What to Do During a Hazardous Materials Incident
- Leave immediately taking the routes instructed.
- Do not go to schools to pick up your children; they will be provided evacuation or shelter by the school district.
- Do not attempt to return to your home or office until advised that it is safe to return.
- Get indoors quickly.
- Shut all doors and windows. Turn off the air conditioning.
- Stay away from external windows and go to an interior room, taking a radio or TV, phone, wet cloth or towel, plastic sheets, and duct tape.
- Seal the air vents and all openings around all doors and windows.
- If you happen to smell the chemical or have trouble breathing – breathe through the wet towel or for higher protection go to a bathroom and turn on the shower in a strong spray.
- Wait for the all clear signal before you leave your shelter.
IF YOU ENCOUNTER A HAZARDOUS MATERIALS INCIDENT:
- Call 9-1-1 and let them know of the situation.
- Remain upwind and try to get at least 8-10 city blocks from the danger area.
- Remember, some toxic chemicals are odorless so stay as far away as you can from the incident in order to minimize the risk of exposure or contamination.