Safety and Health Challenges in Emergency Situations
Emergency situations come with various safety and health challenges which should be addressed by safety managers. Considering the risks and hazards to which victims are exposed during emergency situations comes with the burden of identifying specific measures to address specific risks. Situations such as the bombings recently experienced in Sri Lanka expose victims to numerous safety and health challenges (Greenfield, 2019). One conventional challenge is the risk of exposure to human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infections. According to the CDC, it is common for victims of bomb blasts to be exposed to numerous body fluids as a result of contact with sharp objects and with the bodies of others. Open wounds created during contact with such materials can be infected with blood-borne viruses such as HIV. Emergency managers need to prepare exposure control plans for blood-borne pathogens. Through such procedures, it is possible to prevent infections such as HIV during bombings.
Safety managers should particularly be concerned with preventing blood-borne infections due to their impacts on the lives of survivors. The quality of life of survivors and their productivity can be reduced significantly due to infection from blood-borne pathogens such as HIV and hepatitis. Additionally, there are significant financial implications that result from such infections. The objective of the safety manager and the safety team in general in such circumstances is to prevent hazards and to ensure that there is a reduction of potential harm to victims of such incidents. Reports provided by the CDC indicate an emphasis on preparedness, documentation, and particular focus on the use of personal protective equipment during rescue missions in such emergency events. Documented health impacts of such emergency events transcend blood-borne infections, and the prevention of any unintended outcome is a significant step towards the prevention of life loss.
CDC (2018). Emergency response resources. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Retrieved from www.cdc.gov/niosh/topics/emres/terrorresp.html
Greenfield, P. (2019, April 23). ISIS claims responsibility for Easter Sunday attacks- as it happens. The Guardian. Retrieved from www.theguardian.com/world/live/2019/apr/23/sri-lanka-bombings-attacks-live-news