As the most seismically active region in the United States, California is known to experience earthquakes on a daily basis. Fortunately, many of these tremors aren’t felt by the public because they register magnitudes lower than 4 on the Richter scale. The problem with the geology of the Golden State is that some of its tectonic faults are uncomfortably close to the surface, which explains why the magnitude 6.7 Northridge earthquake of 1994 was so devastating. Like other natural disasters, earthquakes are a major safety and security concern, which is why security guards are trained to respond appropriately during these situations. Here are five examples that explain how security personnel can help during a major seismic event.
1. Follow a Disaster Preparedness Plan
Among the various duties expected to be performed by security guards, executing safety and security plans is one of the most crucial. If an emergency management plan calls for employees, students, or customers to meet at a designated rendezvous point in a facility, security personnel can make sure this is carried out.
2. Observe Overall Security Issues
Guards are trained to observe and report. To this effect, security personnel will pay close attention to certain situations that may arise after an earthquake. During the 1994 Northridge quake, for example, security guards watched over damaged banks and stores until police officers and members of the National Guard were deployed. If a similar natural disaster occurs in San Jose, security guards can perform this function as well.
3. Sound the Alarm
Even people born and raised in California forget that earthquakes can often be followed by strong aftershocks, which usually means they’ll stay where they are if seismic activity lasts less than 10 seconds. Since a strong, brief jolt usually suggests a long aftershock is coming, it’s better to remind building occupants of this risk by sounding the alarm and getting them to evacuate.
4. Work with Emergency Responders
Security guards are generally the first line of response during emergencies, and they can continue to provide assistance when other responders arrive. If there are multiple injuries that require medical assistance but only one ambulance arrives, guards can help paramedics with following a triage procedure so the most critical victims are treated first. Guards who are military veterans can even help an air ambulance land safely by reporting on the condition of the landing site and guiding the pilot with hand signals they learned in the service.
5. Help After the Earthquake
Taking employee rosters, standing watch at priority posts, patrolling the area for looters, notifying next of kin, searching for survivors, and helping people get home are just some of the tasks security personnel can accomplish after seismic activity. Guards can also help managers with observations about the condition of the structure, secondary incidents, and the effectiveness of the security plan, which is important when drafting a post-disaster report.
Safety is one of the main priorities of security personnel, and that includes responding quickly and effectively during natural disasters. Companies who want their security staff to be highly trained, experienced professionals who can respond well in all types of situations should contact ADS Guards, one of the finest security companies in San Jose. Call us today at 1-800-794-1550 to find out about our dedication to keeping your employees and customers safe.