September is National Preparedness Month, a time to focus on being prepared for all types of disasters and emergencies. This year's theme, "Take Control in 1, 2, 3," is especially important for older adults, who are more vulnerable to the effects of disasters.
Older adults face a number of challenges during disasters, including:
- Increased risk of injury or death
- Difficulty evacuating or taking shelter
- Medication and medical supply needs
- Limited mobility or access to transportation
- Social isolation
The Ready Campaign's 2023
National Preparedness Month Focus
The Ready Campaign, a public-private partnership, is working to raise awareness of the importance of disaster preparedness for older adults. Their 2023 National Preparedness Month campaign focuses on the three-step approach to disaster preparedness:
- Assess your needs. This includes identifying your risks, your resources, and your support network. For example, you might need to consider your physical abilities, your access to transportation, and your medication needs.
- Make a plan. This includes a plan for evacuation, sheltering in place, and communicating with your loved ones. Your plan should be specific to your needs and circumstances.
- Get involved. This includes staying informed about local hazards and participating in community preparedness activities. There are many ways to get involved, such as volunteering for a local emergency response organization or attending a disaster preparedness workshop.
These approaches are designed to help older adults take control of their own preparedness and reduce their risks.
Understanding the Risks for
The risks of disasters are not evenly distributed. According to the National Center for Disaster Preparedness, older adults are more likely to die in a disaster than any other age group. They are also more likely to be injured, require hospitalization, or lose their homes.
Some of the factors that can amplify the risks for older adults include:
- Living alone
- Low-income status
- Rural residency
Importance of Clear
Communication and Symbolism in Preparedness
Clear communication and symbolism are essential for disaster preparedness, especially for older adults. This age group may have difficulty understanding complex language or instructions, along with the potential for having vision or hearing impairments that make it difficult to see or hear important information.
ISO 7010 symbols
are a set of international symbols that can be used to communicate important
information about hazards, safety, and emergency procedures. These symbols are
clear, concise, and intended to be universally understood.
Here at Clarion Safety, we pride ourselves on being a leading manufacturer of ISO 7010 inspired symbol signs. Our signs are made with high-quality materials and are designed to be durable and easy to read and comprehend. We also offer a variety of customization options, so you can create signs that meet your specific needs.
Highlighting ISO 7010 Symbols and Their Significance
The symbols in ISO 7010 use colors and principles set out in ISO 3864-2. According to ISO, there are five types of safety symbols, each with its own defined combination of color, contrast color, and shape:
- Warning: black-banded yellow triangle with black symbol
- Mandatory action: blue circle with white symbol
- Prohibition: black symbol behind red circle with slash
- Safety equipment location signs/safe condition: green rectangle with white symbol
- Fire equipment location: red rectangle with white symbol
These symbols can be used to help older adults understand important information about how to stay safe during a disaster. They can also be used to create visual aids that can be used for disaster preparedness education and training.
Bridging the Gap: Integrating
ISO 7010 Symbols into Preparedness Strategies
There are many ways to integrate ISO 7010 symbols into disaster preparedness strategies. Some of the most effective strategies include:
- Using symbols in educational materials, such as brochures, posters, and pamphlets
- Creating visual aids, such as evacuation maps and emergency kits
- Training staff and volunteers on how to use symbols
- Making signs available in multiple languages
Install safety signs in places where they will be seen and understood. Safety signs should be placed in areas where they are likely to be seen by everyone, including older adults, such as near exits, stairwells, and doorways. The signs should also be large enough and easy to read.
Here are some additional tips for using safety sign systems for disaster preparedness:
- Use high-visibility colors and fonts that are easy to read
- Use simple language that is easy to understand
- Avoid using technical jargon or acronyms
- Keep signs up to date and in good condition
- Test your safety sign system regularly to make sure it is working properly
By following these tips, you can help to ensure that your community is prepared for any disaster.
Standing by for Emergency Planning
Safety sign systems are an important part of disaster preparedness for older adults, and are a great pathway to planning out safety for National Preparedness Month. By using clear and concise information, safety signs can help everyone better understand the risks, evacuate safely, and get the help they need. When it’s time to outfit your building with evacuation plan signs, labels and other visual aids, turn to our experts here at Clarion Safety Systems. To learn more about our products and services, contact a team member today!