Winter storms occur under a perfect set of conditions. Winter storms deliver strong winds, heavy sleet, rain and snow. There are several types of winter storms and each can cripple entire regions for days or weeks at time. Ice storms, blizzards, lake effects and nor’easters are specific winter storms that occur in temperatures below 32 degrees Fahrenheit. Like all disasters extreme weather events have to be planned for. A series of unexpected catastrophic natural disasters have shaped the field of emergency management. The actions of the local government, military and volunteers were unprecedented. There were no plans to manage waste, dead bodies, prevent disease or ...view middle of the document...
Winter storm triage challenges
Many types of injuries can transpire as a result of winter storms. Many people lose fingers, toes or die due to hypothermia. Hypothermia is a drop in body temperature brought on by long time exposure to cold temperatures. Extremities become excessively cold and turn blue. If the victim survives, they most like will have liver damage and pancreatitis. Most occurrences are during power outages caused by heavy snow and sleet on power lines. Other causes of injury are car accidents, caused by poor road conditions; frostbite, carbon monoxide poisoning falls and fires due to the use of space heaters.
Vulnerable population like the elderly, babies, and the homeless will be severely affected during winter storms. Infants are vulnerable because they lose body heat more easily than adults; infants can't make enough body heat by shivering; in addition to infants, older adults often make less body heat because of a slower metabolism and less physical activity (cdc 2013).
Public Health Issues
During a winter storm public...