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The Crisis Intelligence Blog

Remember: Seek Refuge Before Tweeting in an Emergency!

07 Mar

The below image was brought to my attention in a LinkedIn group discussion and I thought it was quite comical, so I wanted to share it here with all of you!


This is comical – and serious at the same time

Today’s reality is that people think about sharing their experiences to social media, even before they think about dialling 911 for help in an emergency. We saw the extent of this in a recent train derailment when a lady tweeted a picture of her overturned cart before she dialled 911 for help.

It’s also true that Twitter (and other social media platforms) need to be a part of your crisis communications strategy.

With both of these realities in mind, perhaps it’s worth-while to make sure that your crisis team and employees acknowledge that sharing crisis communications to social media should be done only once they’ve sought refuge!

Image credit 

4 Responses to “Remember: Seek Refuge Before Tweeting in an Emergency!”

  1. Joel March 7, 2014 at 2:33 pm #


    This type of thing is getting all too common. Did you see the recent news accounts of the care that crashed through the front window of a store and no one called 911 even though there were clearly a umber of phones on the scene. Those present used their phones to take pictures and video.

    Even worse was the case of the man who passed out in the entry way of a convenience store. You guessed, everyone used their phone to take pictures.

    The picture of the sign you posted would be funny, it it weren't so true.

    • melissaagnes March 8, 2014 at 11:47 pm #

      I agree Joel. It's a scary reality today. One with many risks for individuals and, because of this, for organizations as well. It's one that we should definitely bring attention to, which is why I enjoyed and published the sign. It's one of those things that people don't necessarily realize they do, so calling attention to it may help bring it to consciousness – that's my hope anyway.

      Thanks for taking the time to share your thoughts.

  2. kcsaling March 10, 2014 at 7:43 am #

    We just discussed this at ICRC! One of the speakers was talking about the Asiana airlines crash, and customers that were tweeting and instagramming pictures – as they were getting off a plane that had just crashed.

    It's like we're becoming social media paparazzi – it doesn't matter what is happening, we're getting conditioned to crave having that picture or that tweet go viral.

    • melissaagnes March 11, 2014 at 6:01 pm #

      It's scary when safety is at risk. It's also a huge red flag for organizations to be aware of. This can certainly hurt them in an emergency situation.

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