By James L. Curtis and Meagan Newman

As much the East Coast of the U.S. is dealing with Hurricane Sandy it is important to keep in mind that the dangers of a storm of this magnitude persist long after the winds, rains and sleet have passed.

Storm and flood cleanup activities can present hazards to workers and volunteers. Before embarking on the cleanup, employers should ensure that proper safety precautions are taken and that potential hazards are thoroughly assessed.  These hazards may include: electrical hazards, Carbon Monoxide, musculoskeletal hazards, heat stress, motor vehicles, hazardous materials, fire, confined spaces and falls.

The CDC and NIOSH offer Emergency Response and Hazard Assessment tools that can assist employers in preventing work-related injuries and illnesses in the field.