What To Do Before the Fire Department Arrives

Exterior of burned buildingBy Gordon Williams

A simple mistake turned what might have been a routine New York City apartment house fire into a tragedy that took more than a dozen lives.

Finding her kitchen in flames, a woman grabbed her children and fled her apartment – leaving the front door wide open. That let the flames spread into the hallway and up the stairwells until the entire five-story building was engulfed in flames. Before the fire was extinguished, 12 people were dead, four critically injured and more than 40 survivors were left homeless on a bitterly cold night. A 13th person died later.

So what should you do in those critical few minutes between the time you discover a fire and when the fire department arrives?

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UW student nurses teach emergency preparedness, boost their skills


By Dale Steinke

Edited by Nancy Waddell

Nine students from the University of Washington School of Nursing spent this fall in their community health nursing clinical rotation helping Snohomish County kids and adults be more prepared for emergencies.

In the process, they built up critical knowledge they’ll need once they become nurses. Continue reading

What Drives Red Cross Volunteers to Help those in Need

BeFunky Collage

By Gordon Williams

Whether it’s aiding the victims of some far-off disaster or providing vital services to clients closer to home, the Red Cross relies on volunteers.

But what makes someone volunteer — giving their time and often more to help people who are likely total strangers? Volunteering at the Red Cross could mean driving just a few miles to a local office. But it could also mean flying thousands of miles to work under harsh conditions in an area wracked by storm or flood or wildfire. Continue reading

News You Can Use to Keep Pets Healthy

By Gordon Williams

Photos by: Jen Blackwood

dog collage

We certainly love our pets: How else to explain why Americans own an estimated 78 million dogs and 86 million cats.

Because you do love your pets, and want to keep them healthy and happy, you should know about two recent news items dealing with animal health. Continue reading