Handling social emergencies

How to behave during mass events?

  • When going to mass events taking place in arenas, stadiums etc., primarily get acquainted with inner regulations and look round to know where emergency exits are located;
  • It is not recommended and/or forbidden to take weapons, sharp things, liquids, umbrellas, sticks, handbags or backpacks. If you notice suspicious items left without supervision – immediately inform police officer or security guard;
  • It is advised not to tie a tie, scarf or shawl as well as not to wear high heels;
  • Avoid standing in close distance from the scene or playing-field, since in a case of fire, riot or fight these places are most complicated to leave;
  • It might be dangerous being close to police officers or guards, since aggressive crowd might express their anger on representatives of various services;
  • Avoid being close to people who are drunk, under the influence of drugs or other suspicious persons who behave in unusual manner since it may be difficult to prognosticate their actions;
  • If possible, try to keep away from glass partitions, stands, walls or partitions since in case of a hustle you may be squeezed or traumatized;
  • It is not recommended to go against the crowd. However, if you are in the crowd, avoid getting into its centre;
  • While being in the crowd, do not try to cling to random items on the way;
  • Bear in mind that it is more likely to be squeezed than fall in you are in the crowd;
  • If you are in a moving crowd, keep your bent arms at your chest (square your elbows) – it may help to facilitate breathing and prevent from squeeze.

How to behave in case of air alert and other military threats?

In case of hostile aerial attacks or other military threats:

  • Follow the programme and information provided by Lithuanian National Radio and Television;
  • Check your mobile phone messages;
  • If you hear Civil Protection Signal “Air alert” in the street or another public place, seek for cover as soon as possible and hide there (cover may be hollow, trench, underground pedestrian crossing, tunnel, cellar etc.);
  • Do not panic, try to say calm and focused, warn your relatives and neighbours;
  • Do not leave your residence without important reason, do not walk in the streets or open territories;
  • If you receive instructions to hide, dress up and rush to the place indicated, shelter or another cover. Take your documents, money, water, long-keeping food products, protective measures, necessary medicaments, toiletries, portable radio with batteries, mobile phone and its charger;
  • If you stay at home, take protective measures: turn off the light, draw the curtains, tape window glasses, let your pets inside the house, stay at the room without windows (if possible) or hide in the cellar or by using another cover;
  • If you drive a car, turn on the radio, listen to information and follow recommendations;
  • If you receive instructions to evacuate or leave, turn off electrical appliances, shut off gas and water valves, close windows, shutters, lock the doors and keep the same actions as you carry out before leaving for a few days;
  • Avoid unnecessary calls to your relatives, friends and acquaintances by mobile phones or fixed telephones so that communication lines would not be loaded or blocked. Call if you really need to inform about help needed, traumatized people or unexpected danger.

When explosion occurs (or after explosion):

  • Fall down to the ground and cover your head with hands. If possible, try to use the closest and easily accessible objects such as building, trench, hollow, tree or even part of pavement as cover;
  • After explosion do not hurry to leave the cover since debris may fall close to the place of incident after some seconds, also other explosive devices may explode;
  • Leave the place in a safe distance only when you are certain that there will be no more debris;
  • Hide in a safe shelter and stay there for a while (bombardment may renew in a period of 1-30 minutes);
  • If an explosion takes place in a building, use emergency exits. It is forbidden to use lifts;
  • If there are traumatized persons, help them evacuate to a safer place and give first aid. Before choosing a safer place, consider the condition of the construction since a building or a part of it may collapse;
  • Do not touch suspicious goods or explosive devices. If there is a possibility, mark the suspicious thing (its perimeter) and inform corresponding official authorities;
  • Help others to clear debris, roads and cope with the consequences of aerial attack.

When hostile soldiers appear in your city:

  • Stay calm. Try to make clear about the situation and then decide what to do;
  • If you see soldiers nearby, do not approach them since you may become a target or victim by accident;
  • Do not stare at military equipment, weapons or armed people at close distance – you may be treated as a spy;
  • Do not let children to the streets, they might be curious about the situation and get hurt under the tanks, they may find explosive devices or misfired explosives which may be a threat to  life;
  • Do not film or take photos of hostile soldiers. If you do so, then try to stay unnoticed;
  • If you talk with an armed person, do not keep your hands in pockets, do not make sudden moves and do not argue with him;
  • Do not threaten an armed person by indicating your rights and international institutions – armed persons may be tired, nervous and suspicious and that might pose a risk to your life.
  • If armed persons invade your house, keep away from them, leave your house immediately;
  • If you have to go somewhere, it is better to go on foot than by using a vehicle;
  • It is safer to go not alone (at least two persons) in case of an assault;
  • Consider the time which is better for moving in the city – during the daytime or at night (it depends on factors such as: curfew, snipers, artillery bombardment, etc.)

When gunshots are heard and shooting is witnessed:

  • If you are outside, do not run. Fall down to the ground and cover your head with hands. Fall wherever you stand, do not search for a clean place;
  • When shooting continues, try to be closer to the ground. When shooting ends, crawl to a safer place (underground pedestrian crossing, cellar, first floor of the building, trench etc.);
  • In case shooting is witnessed at your house, do not come near to windows;
  • If you hear shooting when you are at home, immediately fall down on the floor, crawl to the switch and turn off the light, keep the curtains drawn and try to stay in a room without windows;
  • If stay at home is unsafe, go to the closest shelter (collective protection building), where you will receive assistance.

How to behave in case terrorists have used chemical weapon of mass destruction?

Nowadays the likelihood of chemical pollution related disasters is growing not only because of a great number of dangerous objects, but also because of constantly increase of terrorism.

People, animals, plants, buildings, food products and crops may become objects of terrorist attack. They can be destroyed or contaminated by the use of weapons of mass destruction components that have significant destructive and mitigating effects. At present, there are 4 types of weapons of mass destruction: biological, chemical, nuclear and radiological.

Chemical weapon – chemical substances and its compounds, which are used to kill, injure or make a human or an animal incapable of acting for a while. 

Terrorists may use these kinds of toxic substances:

  • Nerve gases (nerve agents). These gases disrupt nerve impulses transferring from brain to cells. Symptoms of poisoning: sticky skin, blue lips and severe tremor. Substances may be similar to the smell of fruits, camphor or sulphur. These substances are durable.
  • General impact. It may disrupt oxygen transferring to red corpuscles. Symptoms of poisoning: livid skin. Substances may smell as almond or peach seeds. These substances are nondurable.
  • Skin irritating. It may result in skin rashes, wounds and festers. Substances smell as garlic or pelargonium, considered as durable.
  • Asphyxiating substances. These substances mostly affect nose, throat and tissues. It causes suffocation, a person crepitates and wheezes. Smell of these substances is similar to drying grass or musty hay. The substances are nondurable.

Nondurable substances may last from a few minutes to a few hours. Durable substances may last from 6–8 hours to one and a half month. 
Usually, toxic substances are liquid, they can also be overspread as aerosol.

If you notice:

  • aircrafts, helicopters with spray systems above residential areas,
  • mist or aerosol devices (aerosol generators) in unusual location,
  • gas cylinders in unusual location,
  • parcels, suitcases, containers,

or find out about possible acts of terrorism, immediately call emergency number 112. If you are at workplace, primarily inform head of the institution and call emergency number 112. Inform security guard or other keepers.

If you hear obtuse explosion noise;

If you see spread of gas, fumes, steam, mist or dusts;

If you detect strange smell, you may suspect that it is caused by toxic substances.

Therefore, consider and take actions:

  • cover your nose and mouth as soon as possible;
  • do not touch things at the place of incident;
  • leave immediately contaminated zone as indicated (upwind direction);
  • avoid lower places since toxic substances subject to accumulate there;
  • try to go upstairs if you are in the building.

If chemical incident occurred in a building or a room - leave it, close door and do not let others to come in.

It is forbidden to eat, drink and smoke if you are in a territory contaminated with dangerous chemical substances.

If you have left the contaminated zone, before entering clean premises, take off your outerwear, take off jewelry, take off shoes and put all these items into plastic bag.

If possible, wash these items with water or wash it with washing liquids. If not – leave a bag away from clean territory. Rinse your mouth, nose and eyes with water. If possible – have a shower with a soap and change your underwear.

Keep radio and television on since you receive updates and recommendations on how to behave during the terrorist act.

If you have symptoms such as weakness, dizziness, stomachache, nausea, convulsion, cough, itchy/ wet eyes or your skin is burned by unknown substances, immediately call emergency number 112 or go to the hospital.

How to behave in case terrorists have used radiological weapon?

People, animals, plants, buildings, food products and crops may become objects of terrorist attack. They can be destroyed or contaminated by the use of weapons of mass destruction components that have significant destructive effects. At present, there are 4 types of weapons of mass destruction: biological, chemical, nuclear and radiological.

Radiological weapons include destructive measures or devices, which aim emitting radioactive substances.

The purpose of using radiological weapon is to transfer and emit radioactive substances which may result in negative effects such as destruction, wounds, injuries and psychological impact.

Radioactive substances may spread:

  • after explosion;
  • through water;
  • after direct spray or dispersion;
  • as particulates (dusts) or aerosol.

Radioactive substances constantly emit ionising radiation such as alpha particles, beta particles or gamma rays, which ionize ambient air and cause negative changes to tissues of plants and living organisms.

It is important to note that there is both internal and external irradiance. Radioactive substances may get into human body through nose, mouth or open wounds and irradiate from inside the body.

Therefore, it is advisable to wear radiation suits or coats, masks, respirators or simply cotton-wool and gauze bandages in order to protect from a great amount of dusts and aerosols with radioactive materials getting into your body (keep in mind that sealing up of buildings is also recommended).

Masks, radiation suits or coats do not prevent from gamma rays. Avoid environment contaminated with radioactive materials or other single sources of ionising radiation.
Remember that you will not feel direct effect of ionising radiation. If you suspect the use of radiological weapon immediately call emergency number 112. Only experts are able to identify used radioactive materials, prognosticate possible effects of radioactive contamination on people and environment.

If it is suspected that terrorists have used radiological weapon:

  • Cover your nose;
  • Do not touch things in the place of incident;
  • Keep distance from any source of smoke or vapour;
  • Give first aid to the injured;
  • Leave dangerous zone as soon as possible;
  • Inform people to keep distance from the place of incident until emergency services arrive;
  • It is recommended to stand upwind direction from the place of incident. Safe distance from contaminated zone is at least 30-50 metres;
  • Do not drink, do not eat and do not smoke in the place of incident or close to it;
  • Wait until emergency service arrive and inform them about the situation in the place of incident;
  • Consider personal hygiene norms;
  • Follow messages transmitted through radio and television, behave according to the recommendations;

If you experience symptoms such as nausea, vomit, diarrhoea, raising temperature and general weakness, immediately call emergency number 112 or go to the hospital.