Ghana Institute of Safety and Environmental Professionals (GhISEP) has released a statement following the short tremor that rocked Accra Saturday evening.
“We wish to call on NADMO to create opportunities to increase public awareness on what to expect and can do to minimize the effect of the earthquake in the unlikely event of its happening,” the statement reads.
Read the full statement below:
Ghana Institute of Safety and Environmental Professionals (GhISEP), as the leading professional body for safety, occupational health and environmental professionals/practitioners in Ghana, has observed with worry the recent incidents of earth tremors, especially in Accra owing to reported cases of active fault lines.
We take notice of the recent simulation exercises of the National Disaster Management Organization (NADMO) in association with some of the security agencies in readiness of potential hazards. However, we wish to call on NADMO to create opportunities to increase public awareness on what to expect and can do to minimize the effect of the earthquake in the unlikely event of its happening.
While we remain expectant of NADMO’s leadership role, GhISEP wishes to advise that, Earthquakes can happen without any warning; they can cause fires and damage to roads as well as landslides in our part of the world.
To minimize the consequences of an Earthquake, we all must Drop Cover and Hold on (Drop to your hands and knees; Cover your head and neck with your arms; Crawl as far as needed to reach a cover for falling objects; Hold on to any sturdy furniture until the shaking stops). In addition, inhabitants of earthquake prone areas must prepare, survive and restore by observing the following tit bits in order to stay safe when an earthquake or tremor threatens:
1. Prepare (Now)
a. Secure items such as televisions and wall hangings.
b. Heavy and breakable items should be stored on low shelves
c. Practice Drop, Cover and Hold on with family and work colleagues
d. Pick safe places in each room of your home, workplace or school
e. Consider retrofitting or reinforcing parts of your building to correct structural defects that will make it vulnerable to collapse during an earthquake
f. Save phone numbers of emergency services
g. Have an emergency preparedness kit
2. Survive (During)
a. Drop, Cover and Hold on
b. If inside, stay there until the shaking stops. Do not run outside.
c. If in bed, stay there and cover your head and neck with pillow.
d. If in a vehicle, stop in a clear area that is away from buildings, utility lines, trees, overpasses or underpasses.
e. Stay inside with your seatbelt fastened until the shaking stops.
f. If you are in a modern building expect the fire alarms and sprinklers to go off. Do not use the lifts or elevators.
g. If near slopes, cliffs or mountains, be alert for falling rocks and landslides
3. Restore (After)
a. Check yourself for injuries and provide help if you have the training (basic first aid)
b. If in a damaged building, go outside and quickly move away from the building
c. Do not enter damaged building
d. If you are trapped, cover your mouth. Send a text, bang on a wall or pipe or use a whistle instead of shouting so that rescuers can locate you.
e. You can also call the emergency services when possible.
We wish to appeal to the media to dedicate more airtime to discuss this pressing issue and educate Ghanaians on it so that we will be better prepared when an earthquake of significant magnitude occurs.
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