Disaster Handbook

Robert Brown Butler
Joslyn Press (2014)
ISBN 9780578144702
Reviewed by Paige Lovitt for Reader Views (12/14)

“Disaster Handbook” by Robert Brown Butler is a must-have reference that describes how to prepare and deal with almost any disaster. Having somewhat of a fascination for post-apocalyptic or zombie movies, my mind often wanders in the direction of “what if,” and while those fictionalized accounts often stretch the imagination, in reality we are often faced with disasters for which we are not prepared. My family has been affected by natural disasters and/or terroristic attacks that have taken place from Hawaii to the East coast. Fortunately they all have been physically unscathed. Living in an earthquake zone, I have had a few wake up calls after experiencing a 7.2 quake when Haiti had their 7.0. Seeing my refrigerator fall over and my water heater break through its retaining brackets left me in shock. Not too long after moving to another location, I got hit with “The Brawley Swarm,” where we had over 300 quakes in a few days. One actually knocked me to my knees. Each time, I think that I am better prepared.

Reading “Disaster Handbook” really helped me pinpoint where I am on target and where I need to address certain deficiencies. A great deal of advice is offered in regards to preparing for emergencies ahead of time. Much of what is needed is easy to accomplish. While reviewing the information that was most pertinent to me, I realized that I have most of the materials suggested for natural disasters, however, most of it is spread out all over my home. I really need to set up an area that I can go to in case of emergency.  I also am sorely lacking in preparedness at my work. I was pleased to see suggestions offered in helping people with disabilities. This is what I do for a living. This leads me to realize that I need to have items on hand for my students as well.

“Disaster Handbook” by Robert Brown Butler is well written and easy to understand. I actually found it pretty fascinating and read every word. I pray I will never have to use the knowledge that I gained for dealing with emergencies such as plane crashes or handling dead bodies, however, it is really good to have an idea of what to expect. This is a book that is a must read for all!

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