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Indiana Department of Homeland Security

IDHS > About IDHS > Get Prepared > Family & Personal Preparedness > Be Informed > Biological Biological

Biological attacks are a purposeful release of germs and other viral or bacterial substances. There may be few or no warning signs before an attack. The most common sign of this attack is when health care workers notice that a larger than normal group of individuals come in with the same symptoms.

Things to Know:

Viral Biological Weapons:
Require a host for them to live. Once infected there is no cure, only the symptoms can be treated.

Bacterial Biological Weapons:
Weapons that are capable of multiplying and surviving on their own. They can be treated with antibiotics if caught early enough.

Biological Release Safety:

  • If there was release in the area, get away immediately.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with multiple layers of fabric.
  • Cover any open cuts.
  • Wash with lots of soap and water.
  • Listen to radio, TV, or internet to determine what steps to take.
  • If you become ill, alert a hospital that you may have been exposed and follow their instructions.

If you are Exposed:

  • Follow instructions of doctors and public health officials.
  • You will probably be quarantined until health officials determine if it is contagious and what the threat is.
  • If you think you have been exposed to a biological emergency, listen to the radio and TV to determine if your symptoms match the ones given. If they do, head to the hospital.