Assisting the Disabled
• Proceed toward the nearest safe emergency exit.
• Close the door behind you to keep smoke out of the stairway. If the stairway should become unsafe, proceed to a safe area away from smoke and fire, closing doors behind you to isolate the smoke. Call 911 and advise the operator of your situation.
• If in a room with a window, signal rescuers by waving or place a sign in the window. Do not open the window unless smoke is entering the room. If possible, place a wet cloth material around and under the door to prevent smoke from entering.
• Persons who cannot speak loudly should carry a whistle or other means of attracting assistance.
When assisting someone, always consult the person about the following:
• Ways the person would prefer to be removed from wheelchair.
• Whether to extend or move extremities when lifting because of pain, catheter leg bags, braces, etc.
• Whether a seat cushion or pad should be brought along with the person if he or she is removed from the chair.
• Whether the person would prefer being carried forward or backward on a flight of stairs.
• Whether the person prefers a stretcher, chair with pad or medical assistance when being removed from the wheelchair.
Please Note: Wheelchairs should not be used in stairwell if at all possible.< p>
Visually Impaired Persons
• Tell the person the nature of the emergency.
• Offer to guide him or her to safety.
• As you walk, say where you are and advise of any obstacles.
• When safety is reached, help to orient the person and ask if additional assistance is needed. Do not leave the person alone.< p>
Hearing Impaired Persons
Since alarms may not be heard and some buildings do not have visual alarms, do one of the following:
• Write a note explaining the nature of the emergency. Include “Go to _______ exit NOW,” or
• Turn light switch on and off to gain attention, then indicate through gestures or writing what is happening and what to do.< p>