Staying Safe After the Storm

As soon as the threat from Hurricane Matthew subsides, state and local officials will be surveying the damage and assessing their response. Unfortunately, many injuries and even fatalities can occur after the storm.

Anne Seiler, a physical therapist at Mariners Hospital, says they see an uptick in injuries in the emergency department such as lacerations and broken bones due to pre-storm preparations and after-storm clean up. Be especially careful with using ladders to remove shutters. It is also important to wear gloves and eye protection during shutter removal and trimming of downed trees.

You can also stay safe by following these tips:

• Listen to local officials for updates and instructions.
• Check-in with family and friends by texting or using social media.
• Return home only when authorities indicate it is safe.
• Watch out for debris and downed power lines.
• Avoid walking or driving through flood waters. Just 6 inches of moving water can knock you down, and fast-moving water can sweep your vehicle away.
• Avoid flood water as it may be electrically charged from underground or downed power lines and may hide dangerous debris or places where the ground is washed away.
• Photograph the damage to your property in order to assist in filing an insurance claim.
• Do what you can to prevent further damage to your property, (e.g., putting a tarp on a damaged roof), as insurance may not cover additional damage that occurs after the storm.


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With internationally renowned centers of excellence, 12 hospitals, more than 27,000 employees, 4,000 physicians and 200 outpatient centers, urgent care facilities and physician practices spanning across Miami-Dade, Monroe, Broward and Palm Beach counties, Baptist Health is an anchor institution of the South Florida communities we serve.

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