Disaster Response

November 2020

The Indiana Knights of Columbus Disaster Response Team recently responded to Lake Charles, Louisiana to assist  PIC1 PIC2 PIC3 PIC4 PIC5

Catholic Charites of Southwest Louisiana and the Louisiana Knights of Columbus DD-47 Louis Gaudet, of Council #15006.

The Indiana Team delivered tools and supplies, valued at over $4,000.00 to the CCSL distribution center.

The Team then deployed into the community, armed with a list of homes of elderly Knights and Veterans that needed assistance with securing their home and yards.

Over the course of the next 4 days the team was able to tarp roofs, cut trees from homes and yards and clean up debris for nine properties.

Average temp was 95 degrees with one day of 109 degrees.  Bill McDonald Indiana Disaster Response Chairman had hope to assist with more homes, but the extreme heat and humidity slowed the Teams progress with frequent breaks to cool down and to say hydrated.  The nearest housing for the Team over 50 miles away also added to extra travel time each day.  Thanks to donations from Lowes, Home Depot, Pet Supplies Plus, Osgood Lions, Club, Tractor Supplies, Subway of Milan, Laughery Valley Co=Op, 

American Family Insurance of Speedway, Council #822 and #10371 in Shelbyville, along with numerous individuals helped make this mission trip possible.

However, there is still approximately $1,500.00 in uncovered expenses.  If you would like to make a donation for this mission or future missions, please make checks to: 

Indiana State Council Knights of Columbus Charity Fund Inc.,

Mail to:

Robert Lynch 3215 St Jude Dr. Indiana, In 46227-6620 

Safety is NO accident,

Bill McDonald

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  

Indiana Knights of Columbus

Disaster Response Chair

812-689-6699

 

 Any donations you wish to make to the Indiana State Council, Charity Fund Inc.

    Send to:  Bob Lynch, PSD      3215 St. Jude Dr.      Indianapolis, In 46227

 

HERE is a reminder document about Tornado Safety Tips. HERE is a Tornado Safety Tips Poster.

In the aftermath of a tornado, workers may be involved in a variety of response and recovery operations. The following are general guidelines that may be applicable to workers involved in assessing and/or cleaning up the damage to their worksite. However, some operations, such as utility restoration, cleaning up spills of hazardous materials, and search and rescue, should only be conducted by workers who have the proper training, equipment and experience.

Potential Hazards: Response and recovery work in tornado-impacted areas presents safety and health hazards that should be properly identified, evaluated, and controlled in a systematic manner to reduce or eliminate occupational safety and health risks to response and recovery workers. Some of the specific hazards associated with working in the aftermath of tornadoes include:

  • Hazardous driving conditions due to slippery and/or blocked roadways
  • Slips and falls due to slippery walkways
  • Falling and flying objects such as tree limbs and utility poles
  • Sharp objects including nails and broken glass
  • Electrical hazards from downed power lines or downed objects in contact with power lines
  • Falls from heights
  • Burns from fires caused by energized line contact or equipment failure
  • Exhaustion from working extended shifts
  • Heat and Dehydration

General Precautions: Continue to monitor your local radio or television stations for emergency information and the potential of additional storms. Be aware of possible structural, electrical, or gas-leak hazards. 

  • If such hazards are identified, report them to the proper local authorities and/or utility.
  • Do not touch downed power lines or objects in contact with downed power lines.
  • Wear proper clothing when walking on or near debris, including boots and gloves.
  • Be careful around sharp objects, including nails and broken glass.
  • Use the proper safety precautions when operating generators, chainsaws, or other power tools.
  • Take steps to prevent heat illnesses and dehydration.
  • See the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website for additional precautions to take after a tornado.

Fact Sheets and Quick Cards: OSHA has the following materials to assist employers with assessing and controlling the hazards common to most response and recovery work in tornado-impacted areas.

For additional information see the Occupational Heat Exposure Safety and Health Topics page.

For more information, see other Emergency Response Resources from the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) or for a full list of related materials, see the Additional Resources page. 

Click below to read more about:

Indiana State Council Disaster Response Mission:

To promote education and training for Local and State Disaster Response Programs and assist Councils and their Members in the Indiana State Council jurisdiction during a disaster.  This is achieved thru a collaborative partnership with Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Indiana Disaster Response and The Indiana State Council Disaster Response Coordinator.

Emergency/Disaster Preparedness:

Being properly prepared for a likely disaster will determine if you will be a victim or survivor. Each member must prepare a personal/family disaster plan. It is only when we have taken care of ourselves and family can we respond effectively to our communities and parish. Each Council must also prepare a disaster plan to be implemented to carry out the Council missions and to provide assistance to its members to minimize the effects of a disaster.  

Communications is crucial during any emergency/disaster.

All emergency/disaster plans should include plans of communication to member, councils and state officers.  Traditional means of communication can be affected during a disaster. Alternate means need to be studied and used as needed.  The assistance of a neighboring Council should be considered in your Council Disaster Plans, as your members may be busy tending to their own families and property. Many times personal contact is the only means available, plan accordingly.

State Council Assistance:

The Knights of Columbus Indiana State Council has Disaster Response Trailer loaded with basic supplies and tools, available to loan to Councils to assist their members during the Early Response Phase of a disaster. The Grand Knight or Financial Secretary of a Council needs to contact the Indiana State Council Disaster Response Coordinator to request its use.  In most circumstances the trailer will be delivered to the site requested. At that point the Council is responsible for the safety of the trailer and its contents. 

Partnerships:

The Indiana State Council Disaster Response Program has agreed to a collaborative partnership with Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Indianapolis Disaster Response to be a force multiplier during times of emergency/disasters.  Catholic Charities has been involved in Disaster Response for many years and are consider one of the Nations experts in this field. It is the goal of this partnership to reduce duplications of services and resources.

Under this collaborative effort Indiana Knights will be trained, supervised, and deployed thru Catholic Charities to provide continuity in training, planning and execution of services for Early Response and Long Term Recovery Programs. This by no means prevents Councils from providing services directly to their Community First Responders and/or Parishes.   To the contrary part of the Council Disaster Preparedness Plan should include contacting other community organizations and establishing local partnerships. Open communication and coordination will reduce duplication of services and resources which will lead to a smooth and effective recovery.

Preparedness Checklist:

  • Make a plan about potential emergencies/disaster and how to deal with them.
  • Practice and maintain your plans. Communicate with members and adjoining Councils.
  • Build an emergency first aid and supply kit.
  • Keep Informed
  • Know your community and neighbors
  • The question to keep asking is “ WHAT IF “

For additional information check with

  • Indiana Department of Homeland Security.com
  • Indiana Emergency Response and Recovery
  • Indiana State Council Disaster Response Coordinator 
  • Bill McDonald at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  812-689-6699

 Bill McDonald

Disaster Response Chairman
812-689-6699
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

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