1. bookVolume 66 (2015): Issue 1 (March 2015)
Journal Details
First Published
26 Mar 2007
Publication timeframe
4 times per year
access type Open Access

Health protection and risks for rescuers in cases of floods / Zdravstvena zaštita i rizici za spasioce u poplavljenim područjima

Published Online: 27 Mar 2015
Page range: 9 - 13
Received: 01 Jul 2014
Accepted: 01 Feb 2015
Journal Details
First Published
26 Mar 2007
Publication timeframe
4 times per year

Floods can pose a number of safety and health hazards for flood-affected populations and rescuers and bring risk of injuries, infections, and diseases due to exposure to pathogenic microorganisms and different biological and chemical contaminants. The risk factors and possible health consequences for the rescuers involved in evacuation and rescuing operations during the May 2014 flood crisis in Croatia are shown, as well as measures for the prevention of injuries and illnesses. In cases of extreme floods, divers play a particularly important role in rescuing and first-response activities. Rescuing in contaminated floodwaters means that the used equipment such as diving suits should be disinfected afterwards. The need for securing the implementation of minimal health and safety measures for involved rescuers is paramount. Data regarding injuries and disease occurrences among rescuers are relatively scarce, indicating the need for medical surveillance systems that would monitor and record all injuries and disease occurrences among rescuers in order to ensure sound epidemiological data. The harmful effects of flooding can be reduced by legislation, improvement of flood forecasting, establishing early warning systems, and appropriate planning and education.



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