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Emergency Alerts
Distress Signals
2007-12-15 19:13:00

SOS is the term for international distress signal. Generally, a signal that is repeated for three times stands for a call for help. The repeated signal can vary according to situation and environment: three large fires, three columns of big smokes, three whistles or cries, etc.

 

Fire Signal


The international way of sending a fire signal is to set off three fires in a triangle pattern (Equilateral is the best). Keep fire wood or other materials dry; once a plane passes over, light up the fires immediately; try to set up the fires in an open field.

 

Smoke Signal

 

·During the daytime, smoke rising up in the sky could easily distinguish themselves in sharp contrast with the environment.

·To make strong smoke: add fresh grass, green leaves, or fern plants onto the fire.

·To prolong the time of burning and smoking: add wet branches, mattresses or cushions onto the fire. 

 

Flag Signal


Tie a flag or a piece of cloth with bright color onto a stick; wave the stick in the "8" shape, with longer strokes to the left and shorter ones to the right. When the distance is not far, you can wave the stick in simple strokes instead of in "8" shapes, also longer strokes in the left and shorter in the right.

 

Sound Signal


When the distance is short, you can scream for help, with three short shouts followed by three long ones, and then three more short ones. Repeat the pattern every one minute.

 

Light Reflection Signal


You can also send a signal by reflecting light with a reflector for help. If there is no mirror, you can make use of tin lid, glass, or metal plate to reflect the light. Continuous reflection of light can attract attention, because it forms a long light line and a bright point.  

 

Message Signal


·When you have to transfer to other places, you should leave some messages for rescuers to trace.
· Put some stones in an arrow shape to indicate your direction.
· Place a forked twig on the ground with the stem pointing at your direction. 
· Pile small stones in a heap, with a small stone beside it to show your direction.
· Carve an arrow on tree trunk to point at your direction.
· Cross two sticks or stones to indicate a dead end.
· Put three rocks, sticks, or twigs in parallel to indicate danger or emergency.

 

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