What Would You Do If Disaster Strikes?
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If disaster strikes, do you know what to do? Are you prepared for an earthquake, tornado, hurricane, blizzard or worse? 

Earthquake in Japan
The devastating earthquake and resulting tsunami in Japan have affected millions of people. Dr. Paul Pagnini, interim chairman of the Department of Radiation Oncology at USC's Keck School of Medicine, joins The Doctors to explain the threat of possible radiation in the atmosphere as a result of explosions at the Tokyo Electric Power Co.'s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant following the disaster.


Is the United States prepared for a massive natural disaster?


Effects of radiation exposure on the body.


Is potassium iodide effective, and do you need it?

Initial Symptoms of Radiation Exposure 

• Nausea

• Vomiting

• Diarrhea

• Skin changes, like redness and damaging

• Skin blistering

Potential Long-Term Effects
• Cancer
• Birth defects

Earthquakes
Earthquakes don’t just occur in California. Four major fault lines run across the United States, putting many states at risk. Whether it’s a 3.0 or an 8.1, find out everything you need to know to prepare for a trembler.

Dr. Lucy Jones, seismologist and chief scientist of the United States Geological Survey Multi-Hazards Project, says that when it comes to earthquakes, it’s not a matter of if, it’s a matter of when.

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“The biggest earthquakes happen on the longest faults,” Dr. Jones says. “The San Andreas is a really long fault, and it averages 150 years between earthquakes, and here in southern California, it’s been 300 years since the last [big] one. At some point, our luck is going to run out. Every Californian needs to be ready for that earthquake.”

Dr. Jones’ Top Earthquake Preparedness Tips:
1. Don’t run
2. Have a large supply of water
3. Have a fire extinguisher
4. Be able to take care of your own medical needs, because the medical system will be overwhelmed

Get more earthquake essentials.


Lightning
A bolt of lightning contains approximately 300 kilovolts of electricity, compared to a typical industrial electrical shock of 20 to 63 kilovolts. For reasons unknown, men are bit by lightning four times more than women. See what happens to the body when struck by lightning.

Ten States Where Lighting Occurs Most:
Florida
Colorado
Georgia
Michigan
New York
North Carolina
Pennsylvania
Ohio
Tennessee
Texas


Hurricanes vs. Tornadoes
Hurricanes are weather systems that begin over warm ocean water and develop into extremely large storms. They can last up to several weeks, but peter off once they move over land.

Tornadoes are formed when warm, moist air and cold, dry air collides, often over a body of water or from a thunderstorm. Tornadoes are accompanied by violent winds, tend to cover a small area and usually last less than 10 minutes.


Hurricanes
A hurricane is a storm with sustained winds of 74 mph or more. Dave Price, weather anchor from CBS’ The Early Show and veteran of extreme storm coverage, explains how hurricanes are categorized and when to seek shelter or evacuate.

“When you hear the word hurricane, it’s dangerous,” Dave explains. “It doesn’t matter if it’s a [category] one, three or five, it can pose a threat.”

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Insomnia is common in expecting mothers, especially in their second and third trimesters. The Doctors and Everyday Health outline how to get a good night's sleep during pregnancy.

Dave Price’s Hurricane Checklist:
1. Generator
2. Extra gasoline
3. One gallon of water per person or more
4. Extra cash
5. Non-perishable food, canned food and can opener


Get more hurricane essentials


Tornadoes
Reed Timmer, meteorologist and star of Discovery Channel’s Storm Chasers, discusses the complications that arise with tornadoes.

“Tornadoes are a lot less predictable at any given point than hurricanes,” Reed explains. “They can strike at night. The most dangerous ones can be rain-wrapped and you can’t see them coming.”

Get tips for surviving a tornado whether you’re inside, outside or in a car when one hits. 


Blizzards and Blackouts
Learn what to do if you're caught in a blackout or a blizzard.

Get more severe weather essentials.

72 Hours After …
The first 72 hours after a disaster can mean the difference between life and death, as it may take that long for help to arrive. Learn what essentials you should always have on hand


Surviving a Plane Crash
Five things you can do to increase your chance of surviving a plane crash.

1. Have an escape plan: Pay attention to flight-safety information and know where your nearest exit is.
2. Once the plane is still, crouch, don’t crawl, to the nearest exit.
3. If there’s a fire or smoke, cover your nose and mouth with a wet washcloth or a piece of clothing.
4. Wear long sleeves, pants and sturdy, close-toed shoes when flying. Imagine having to escape from the plane.
5. Studies have shown that sitting in the back of the plane can increase the chance of surviving a crash.

Lean more about the disaster guidelines.


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