Current Safety Issues
Homeland Security Resources
U.S. Department of Homeland Security
This site includes current information about national security, health and safety and protecting home and community.
Visit this site for recommended steps to prepare for possible homeland security emergencies.
Coping with Stress During Wartime (PDF)
This publication, prepared by the American Psychological Association, offers 10 tips on how to be resilient in the face of hard times and disasters.
Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS)
Find answers to commonly asked questions about SARS.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Web site provides information about how to handle anthrax and other biological threats.
The US Postal Service provides information that describes how to identify a suspicious mail piece and the procedures to follow if you come in contact with a suspicious piece of mail.
Facts About Anthrax
Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Web site.
Anthrax is an acute infectious disease caused by the spore-forming bacterium Bacillus anthracis. Anthrax most commonly occurs in hoofed mammals and can also infect humans. Symptoms of disease vary depending on how the disease was contracted, but usually occur within 7 days after exposure.
The serious forms of human anthrax are inhalation anthrax, intestinal anthrax, and cutaneous anthrax.
Symptoms of inhalation anthrax infection may resemble a common cold. After several days, the symptoms may progress to severe breathing problems and shock. Inhalation anthrax is often fatal.
The intestinal disease form of anthrax may follow the consumption of contaminated food and is characterized by an acute inflammation of the intestinal tract. Initial signs of nausea, loss of appetite, vomiting, and fever are followed by abdominal pain, vomiting of blood, and severe diarrhea. Direct person-to-person spread of anthrax is extremely unlikely, if it occurs at all. Therefore, there is no need to immunize or treat contacts of persons ill with anthrax, such as household contacts, friends, or coworkers, unless they also were exposed to the same source of infection. In persons exposed to anthrax, infection can be prevented with antibiotic treatment. Early antibiotic treatment of anthrax is essential–delay lessens chances for survival. Anthrax usually is susceptible to penicillin, doxycycline, and fluoroquinolones. An anthrax vaccine also can prevent infection. Vaccination against anthrax is not recommended for the general public to prevent disease and is not available.
Anthrax organisms can also cause skin infection.
For more information about anthrax disease, please contact the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) Web site or call 1-800-311-3435.