Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 37.djvu/478

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THE POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

danger of spreading the disease is over. This is a point of great importance, and its neglect may result in grave disaster.

6. For the convenience of the survivors and of the laborers who may be brought to the place, it will be necessary for the health authorities to see that public privies, or closets, are erected. These should be placed where most convenient. They should be examined by inspectors of the different districts, and should be under the charge of a careful and reliable foreman, who will daily disinfect them. No foul odors should ever be permitted to arise from these places.

7. If the free discharge from the sewers is impeded by d├ębris, these should be opened at once, so that water may be discharged through them freely. In the case of floods it will very frequently be found that the mouths of the sewers have been silted shut. These should be opened. The escape of foul gases from sewers at such a time is not to be permitted.

8. There is always, in time of disasters, danger of the people becoming panic-stricken from fear of a pestilence arising, and in our times well-meaning but ignorant persons are very liable to convey messages to the daily press which tend to excite and distress the survivors. To prevent any panic in this way, the State Board of Health found it necessary to issue occasionally "health bulletins," which stated the exact condition of the public health in the devastated district. These bulletins were printed and posted throughout the whole region, and they were thought to do much good. They were founded on the daily reports received from the sanitary inspectors, from the other physicians in the district, and from the hospitals. In addition to these "health bulletins," the people may be greatly aided by issuing "circulars of information." These circulars describe in the plainest language the proper ways to disinfect the premises, to clean them up, and about what should be eaten, and those things which will best tend to preserve health in the midst of unfavorable conditions. These circulars of information should be placed in each house throughout the district as often as may be deemed necessary.

9. It may, in some cases, be desirable to partially or wholly depopulate the devastated district. This may be done by laying out a town of tents, and then requiring the people to remove from their homes into it. Such a town should be laid out as a military camp, and should be under the same regulations as are military camps. At Johnstown, a partial depopulation only was attempted. The State furnished free transportation to all women and children who desired to go elsewhere to their friends for a few weeks or months, and all were urged to go for a short time. For several weeks, also, transportation was given the men who