Page 1


New York 22, N. Y.

485 Madison Avenue





A Digest of Information as presented by Margaret Arlen, WCBS AM, WCBS TV, in a nCourse in Self Preservation," with the assistance of the Civil Defense Commission, New York State, the office of Civil Defense and the American Red Cross.

Copyright b~ Columbia Broadcasting System Inc., 1951


FOREWORD More is known about the effects of atomic bombing than is known about the common cold. If your child has a cold, you don't hesitate to take the precautions which will pro­ tect his health. The problem of possible atomic attack is vastly different... yet there are many precautions -- incredi bly simple -- which can be taken to strengthen our home defense and lessen the otherwise disa.strous effects of enemy attack. In planning the Course in Self Preservation, of which this booklet is a summary, our purpose was to collect all the information available to us on atomic defense and relate it to the most important group of people in the country... the homemakers. An enemy who, by merely threatening, can terrify the homemakers of America has already won a large victory. We can fight panic with information.



SELECT SHEL TER AREA HOME SHELTER: Underground area - basement· is best. Should have more than one exit; Minimum of windows essential, since flying glass will be a big hazard in attack. Choose area a safe distance from furnace, gas main and electric cables. Reinforce walls of shelter. Good thick walls withstand blast. S~nd bags are cheap, available, good.

If your house has no basement, choose a room on the lower floor, away from windows, put up draperies or blinds which could be closed quickly. In apartment house, superintendent is supposed to choose and equip shelter area. It is up to tenants to see that he does, and if necessary take the initiative in choosing it themselves. In either a house or apartment, choose the safest room on the lower floor as well as the shelter area, where you would be safest in a ftsneak" attack. Do not plan to jump into a closet, since you would have a ventilation problem and might run the danger of be­ ing trapped by debris in an attack. Other safe areas in a building are: As far down from the roof as you can get. Stairway areas. If you cannot get to a shelter in an attack, use the stairway. Center of building. K~OW

To make this informJuion as clear and concise as possible, the problem of learning the right thing to do at the right time to protect our families and homes in an atomic attack has a three-fold approach:


PUBLIC SHEL TERS: Public buildings are now being designated as shelters. You will be seeing more "S" Shelter signs every day.

..s" Shelter sign on street refers to building enttance nearest the sign. What we can do now...

What we should do during an attack...

What we should do after an attack ...

Use as shelters only subways with mezzanine levels, not sub­ ways with ttacks, since these would be dangerous and OCD will be using trains to bring in supplies and evacuate casualties. Sub­ way shelters which are to be used are marked ~fh the ..s" shelter sign. Police, assisted by Air Raid Warden in each building will be in charge of Public Shelter. Their authority is absolute. In case of attack, obey their instructions, ask their help.

Be sure to look about you now for Shelter areas inside and out of public buil~ings. Become as familiar with their whereabouts as you are with the shelter in your own home or apartment house.


First Aid Kit.

Food for 48 hours. Canned is best, since canned food will not

be affected by radioactivity. Choose foods high in calories, for

energy and nourishment. Also, remember you may have to eat

them without heating, so choose foods packed in liquid that

could be eaten from the can.

Food might include: Fruit juices, soups, spaghetti, vegetables,

chocolate, cube sugar, non-fat dry milk powder, vitamin pills.

And a can opener.

Portable battery radio. You will depend on this for receiving in足

structions from OCD.


Drinking water: One gallon per person in closed jugs.


Sterile scissors. Boil them and wrap them in gauze and seal

them in a bag. Large roll of absorbent cotton. Old sheets, towels. Soft blankets. Special medicines required by invalids. Extra pair eye glasses, false teeth. Sanitary napkins. DDT Baby equipment, if necessary. F ire-fighting equipment: 5-gallon tank and stirrup pump.

Pails of water and sand.

ShoveI, axe, crow bar.

Chemical extinguisher.

Household broom.


Put in an emergency carton or bag to pick up quickly on the way

to shelter when you hear the alert:

First Aid Kit.

Portable battery radio.


Small supply food, can opener.


Drinking water in closed jugs.

Baby supply if necessary.

Special medicines.

ON THE SET: Margaret Arlen and Woody Klose demonstrat足 ing First Aid techniques during the Course in Self Preservation, WCBS-TV. Around them are the provisions and equipment required for the shelter area.

YOUR FIRST AID KIT Remember, know-how is vital. And so is equipment. If your home

contains a well-stocked First Aid Kit, hou have a decided advan­

tage in an emergency. The materials in a kit intended for use after

atomic attack should be the same as those required for any other

disaster, with a few a,dditions. More than 50% of injuries in an at­

tack are ordinary cuts, bruises and broken bones, which you will

have to know how to treat.


of atomic attack than most adults do. Have drills at home for pre-school children, just as big brother has at school, with big brother helping. Put small supplies of baby food, toys, diapers, clothes and extra medicines in the shelter area. Remain calm whenever you discuss the subject of atomic attack.


I-inch adhesive compresses (Band-Aid)

Sterile gauze squares, 3" by 3".

Assorted sterile bandage compresses.

Triangular bandages for slings, tying splints, for covering other

dressings. A most useful bandage. Sterile gauze about I yard square. Roll of 1/2 inch adhesive. Aromatic spirits of ammonia. Scissors with blunt ends. Pointed scissors could be dangerous when dressing a wound under emergency conditions. I-inch and 2-inch roller bandages. Caster oil or mineral oil ,for use in eyes. Eye dropper. Bum ointment (Sterile petrolatum for minor burns only). Wire or thin board splints, assorted. Antiseptic recommended by your physician. Aspirin recommended by your physician. Soap (Naptha or Lava for protection against radioactive dust. Towels and old, warm blankets. Salt. Bicarbonate of soda. Safety pins, for pinning bandages.

Put oily rags or paint cloths in covered metal containers.

Do not take anything out of your Emergency First Aid Kit for regular use, unless it is absolutely necessary. And if you do, replace it as soon as possible.

Keep paint cans, turpentine, home dry-cleaning fluids and other highly flammable liquids in a cool part of the cellar in covered containers.


Practice placing and carrying small dogs and cats in carriers. In the event of attack, animals must not be allowed to roam freely. If you are to leave an area and wish to take your pet with you, you may have to carry him. Get license tags and plate with your name and address and keep them on the pet at all times. Special collars for cats are avail­ able with a section of elastic to allow them freedom. Pets will not be allowed in public shelters, but you may follow your own wishes about having your pet in your home shelter. If you decide you will have the pet with you, put provisions for him in the shelter now.

If you decide that you will not take the pet to the shelter, choose a heavy piece of furniture in your home to which you would tie him in the event of attack.

START FIREPROOF HOUSEKEEPING Clean out newspapers, magazines and all rubbish throughout the house.

Check your electric wiring and keep all electric appliances in good repair.

Instruct your children about possible attack in simple terms. When they ask questions, answer them truthfully. Make them familiar with the shelter area in your home or apart­ ment, so that if ever you and your children have to hurry down to to the shelter, the area will not be strange to them. Teach them their names, and addresses, and the names of their parents. This is valuable at any time, of course. Train school children to walk the same route every day to and from home. Tell them to notify you if they are going elsewhere. Do not worry about children at school. They are being drilled regularly, and probably know more about what to do in the event

LEARN BASIC FIRST AID The American Red Cross is teaching First Aid at their local centers regularly. Training in First Aid is one of the most valu­ able things a homemaker can have, whether there is a national emergency or not.



In a Car: Park at the curb as quickly as you can. Do not park where you will block a street or a corner. Leave your keys in the car. Get out and seek shelter at once.


Recognize it: Wavering siren blows steadily for 3 minutes.

In a Bus or Taxi: Driver will draw over to side of road. Get out immediately and go to public shelter.


ATTACK WITHOUT WARMIMG (SM EAK) Recognize it: A blinding flash of bright white light.



AT HOME: Close doors and windows.

IF YOU ARE IN THE OPEN: Drop to the ground in a ditch or a gutter.

If you are in your back yard, drop to the ground, whatever you are doing. Cover your eyes. Lie flat, with one arm over your face, the other covering your neck. Shut your eyes and keep them shut.

Pull a coat or sweater over your head. If you have a newspaper or even a handbag, use it to cover your head. Do not attempt to go to school for your children. They are trained for attack procedure. You would dis足 rupt that, and might easily be in足 jured on your way to the school. You will be needed to care for them later, remember.


~v/f" J..Remain where you are on the ground for at least as long as it takes you to count to ten slowly. Then go quickly to the nearest building. IF YOU ARE INDOORS: Drop to the floor, near the wall, well away from any window. Pull your coat or sweater over your head and close your eyes . . ~-.-;

IN APARTMENT HOUSE: Go to shelter immediately. Use the stairs, not the elevators, since they will be needed for the aged, infirm, etc.

If possible, dive under a bed or table and shut your eyes. Stay there for a full min ute before you move out.

H you should see an intense flash of light on your way down to the shelter, drop to the floor or stairs instantly. Cover your eyes. Stay down for at least ten seconds. Count slowly to ten. AWAY FROM HOME:





L... CJO


Your greatest danger will be from flying glass and debris. So be sure that you are well away from windows when you dive for cover, and that you keep those eyes shut.

If you are at work, do not try to get to a shelter. Dive under a desk or table and cover your head.

In the Street: Go immediately to the Public Shelter marked as "S" on the street signs.




Pull the emergency brake at once. Tum off ignition. r==-~I¥!'I"~

Recognize it: 3 one-minute signals, each separated by 2 minutes of silence.

Drop to the floor and cover your head with your arms. Passengers drop to the floor in the back seat.






Stay in your shelter until you get instructions via ba'ttery radio or Air Raid Warden, or until after you hear the all-clear.

Duck as close to the floor as you can and shield your face and neck from possible flying glass.

If you are notified that you are in ~ radioactive area and are told to leave immediately, or if you must leave your shelter because of fire, etc. do this:


Cover your face with a handkerchief, to lessen the possibility of breathing in radioactive dust. Get out of the area at once. Do not pick up any object as you leave. It may be contamina ted.

Do not attempt to take your pet into a Public Shelter. The warden at the entrance will take him away from you. Do not tum animals out of doors in an attack.

If the animal at home becomes hysterical, aspirin will help: Small dog: 2-1/2 grains Large dog: 10 grains Cat: 2 grains Your druggist will help you buy the correct amounts now.

WHA T TO DO ABOUT SMALL FIR ES You must be prepared to fight small fires yourself, since the Fire Department will be fighting large ones.

Dogs are easily suffocated by smoke. Remove your dog at once if there is fire. Keep him on a leash." Tie him up if you must leave him.

Do not use water to put out oil or electric wire fires. Use sand. If you have no sand, smother the fire with a blanket or broom. Close doors and windows to prevent drafts.


Crawl, do not walk in thick smoke, and stay near the wall. Do not enter a smoke-filled room alone, except to save a life.

Obey all instructions from police and the building Air Raid Warden. Their authority is absolute.

wren you enter the shelter, stay close to the wall and sit down. Be calm. And try to calm others who are upset.

If the fire gets out of hand, do not attempt to put it out. Notify the Air Raid Warden, who will call the Fire Department.


WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT RADIOACTIVITY Radiation last 90 seconds after an air burst. There is no danger of contamination after such a burst. Radiation may last indefinitely after a ground or water burst.

You will receive instructions about when you may leave the shelter. Do not attempt to leave until you are given permission by the war­ den. Do not smoke in a public shelter.

You will be notified which type of burst it has been. Do not buy a Geiger counter. OCD Radiological teams trained to use them will enter bombed areas to test for radiation.


Watch for symptoms of shock: Nausea, dizziness

Skin is pale

Expression seems. vacant, eyelids droop

Pulse is weak, faster than normal

Breathing is shallow, quiet~

TO LESSEN DANGER OF CONT4M1NATION AFTER WATER OR GROUND BURST: Change your clothes as soon as possible after the attack. Bathe or shower when the water supply is authorized as safe by battery radio.

Treatment of shock:

Scrub hard, use plenty of soap. Take special care to see that hair and fingernails are clean.

Keep patient warm, but not hot.

Give him aromatic spirits o{ ammonia in water if he is

conscious, except if in jury involves area of stomach. Keep him lying down, with feet higher than head. Get him to a doctor as soon as possible.

If you have no water, or if the water has not been authorized, scrub hard with a clean towel or rag of any kind. Bury, do not burn outer clothing i-f you are told they have been contaminated. Smoke from burning them carries radioactive particles.

Radiation sickness: Patient may not show signs o{ it {or 24 hours or more.

In an apartment house, wrap outer clothing in paper until it can be buried or disposed of by OCD. Put the bundle into a carton or valise and close it. Do not put it into the apartment house in­ cinerator.

Symptoms of radiation sickness: Nausea, vomiting.

Weakness of entire body.

Soreness of mouth and throat.

After 11th day after bombing, hair will probably fall out.

It will grow back later.

WATER: Do not drink tap water after an attack until OCD notifies you that it is safe.

When you have recovered from radiation sickness, there will be no scars or disfiguring marks.

Well water of any kind should not be drunk until it has been tested.

If you should run out of drinking water, notify your warden. You will be given auxiliary water from OCD.

Treatment of Radiation Sickness:

Do not smoke cigarettes or any kind of tobacco that has been open to the air in an attack.

Take patient immediately to Medical Aid. He may have to have whole blood and other professional treatment.

Your watch-strap and other leather goods may have to be washed, since they hold radiation. Shoes may have to be disposed of by OCD.

If it is imp ossible to get Medical Aid, do this: Keep patient warm.

Keep patient lying down, preferably in bed.

Give him foods rich in sugar and protein.

Let him drink as much salt solution as possible.

If possible, wear rubber gloves or any kind of good heavy gloves, in handling any material which might be contaminated. Throw the gloves away later.

Other Injuries:

Do not eat food which has been exposed. Eat only canned or well-packaged food. Wash the outside of the can before using. Nail draperies or a blanket over broken windows to keep out radioactive dust.


Remember, touching or handling any wound will increase the risk of infection. Get medical aid as soon as possible.

If there has been a ground or water burst, cover the patient with blankets or other clothing to keep out contaminated water or dust.

EMERGENCY FIRST AID YOU MAY NEED TO KNOW Do not attempt to set a broken bone. Do not use ointment of any kind on a burn. Dress a bum with dry gauze, cover with smooth white towel, over that place a heavy turkish towel. Bind securely to keep out air, which increases the pain.

Do not try to move an injured person, unless there is danger from fire or falling debris.

If he must be moved for any distance, get help.

The actual plans for or,gani:t.e(! eVltCIIIltl"n (rom the tlu~et area must be made according to thl' (Adlld.1I nrror.d by thl!' lurround­ ing areas. Therefore, they IIlIIIII vluy In IUtt.ront ••ctlon.. The ability to carry out the pll1l111 which 11111)' h. mill. rlltll with the kind of organization for Civil ()r(.,nll. In ... "h Clnmmunlty.

IF YOU WERE INJURED Air Raid Warden will check each building in his area. He will notify Litter Beaters that you are injuted.


Litter bearers will carry you to First Aid station, where you will get professional medical aid.

If you are able to walk, go at once to the nearest First Aid Station. The First Aid Stations will be mobile and will move into disaster areas immediately after an attack.



If you are trapped under debris, the warden will notify the Rescue Squads, who will come to release you.


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If you are the mothet in your family, you IIItlumlly bC'CIIIIlt' IhC'



Chief of Staff in YOut home in any e-lIIc'r~C'III'y, BOlli 1)lIIIie alld apathy will prevent you from mectinflll nl/lfi/lf ude-l(lIatcly. The calm coutage which comes with knowlrdj.(C' will hI" 1111 d(cctivc life-saving weapon in preserving our rUlllillC'/If I\lId ourselves in the event of an atomic attack.



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If your home has been destroyed, go at once to your nearest Emer­ gency Welfare Station. Register your name and the names of rela­ tives with you.



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If your home is standing, go there and stay out of the way of rescue teams.

If your home is not standing, stay at the Welfare Station. They will feed you, clothe you, give you money if you need it, and find emergency housing for you.

If you are separated from your children or husband, you will be able to check on them at your own Welfare Station. Do not attempt to leave the city on your own after an attack. High­ ways, railroads, buses, etc. will be taken over by OCD for bringing in supplies and evacuating casualties.


If you are to be evacuated, you will be sent to a location prede­ termined by OCD. You may not choose where you will go after an attack. In the case of extreme emergency before an attack, OCD may evac­ uate hospital patients, the aged, and mothers of small children together with the children.

Our reaction to emergency can t1111~C' "II Ihr w,,)' (rom Ihl' C'lllJ'C'IIIt' of panic to that of apathy. Panic i/O 1\ rrllllh III Inl'k IIf InfllrrJllllllll1 ... apathy is simply lack of intere·sl.

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There will be no mass evacuation of the people out of the city since the facilities within the city are more adequate than they are outside the city.

That is another point for your cOIlIIIII.rluln/l, c:lvU "I,"nll home defense ... your home ... und II ill 1I111r. lUI IIUtIll. An lu•• nllll· tion as the numbers and willin~I\t'III1l IIr III' 1'1'11111. willi IIr. InvlIlYfl1 in it. If Civil Defense is nol wt'lllIr,llIlIII~,l"d III yUIIf l'lllllllllllllcy, perhaps it is because you have- (!lIlIC' 11111 Ihllr "IKIIiI h. (Ivll II". fense is your responsibility. If you lltll 1111111"1'1 JI, yllll AI\II )'11111 children may be the victims o( yOIll' OWII n"/lIN'1.


Homemaker's Manual of Atomic Defense  
Homemaker's Manual of Atomic Defense  

A scan of the 1951 document titled "Homemaker's Manual of Atomic Defense" produced by Columbia Broadcasting System (CBS).