How to behave during shelling

If your home is located in an area of regular armed conflict, you need to strengthen the windows (for example, with adhesive film) – this will help avoid the scattering of broken glass. If possible, close the windows, for example, with sandbags or solid furniture.

Behavior rules in the combat area

In times of crisis, many factors will act against you, including emotions. Therefore, remember that you need to stay organized and focused at a critical moment and don’t react to possible provocations. Your safety will depend on it.

We advise you to listen to the following tips:

  • Always carry your ID with you. Keep money and documents in different places: you will have more chances to keep them.
  • Keep a record of blood type and possible health problems (such as drug allergies, chronic illnesses) in a pocket of your clothes.
  • Try to stay away from home and work as little as possible, reduce the number of trips for no good reason, avoid crowded places.
  • If possible, avoid demonstrating patriotic symbols, which may provoke an aggressor.
  • Remember shelters closest to your home, work, or places you often visit.

What not to do:

  • Don’t share your plans with people with questionable reputations or strangers.
  • Do not argue with strangers to avoid possible provocations.
  • Avoid columns of equipment and do not stand near military vehicles.
  • Do not take photos or videos in the presence of people in military uniform, do not try to record their actions, even if you think they are illegal.
  • Do not watch the course of hostilities; hide as soon as you hear the shots.
  • Do not carry weapons, do not show the military anything that may even resemble a weapon in shape.
  • Do not pick up abandoned weapons or ammunition.
  • Do not touch explosive or just suspicious objects, do not try to disassemble them or move them to another place: even ordinary household items can be mined. Instead, immediately notify the territorial bodies of the SES and the Ministry of Internal Affairs by calling 101 and 102.
  • Do not wear army uniforms, camouflage, or chevron clothing. Choose clothes of dark colors that do not attract attention. Avoid any symbols, as they can cause an unpredictable reaction.

How to dress for the street in the condition of street lights blackouts

Due to russian shelling of energy infrastructure facilities, an emergency shutdown of street lighting is possible, or a planned one – in order to save electricity. Because of this, drivers can’t always clearly see pedestrians on the street. So we advise you to pay attention to the selection of clothes in the dark time of day.

  • Choose clothes of light color: this way you are easier to notice on the road. People in black are almost invisible when there are no street lights. You don’t have to wear all white. Half of your clothes (jacket or pants) should be light

  • Buy reflective clothing items. It can be a bracelet, arm or backpack band, sticker or vest. You can buy a sticker or a ribbon on your arm for 50 hryvnias. Vests – 100-300 hryvnias. So the driver will definitely notice you. According to statistics, reflectors reduce the risk of being hit by a car by six times. For comparison, the driver can see a pedestrian in dark clothes 18 meters away, in white clothes – 55 meters, and a pedestrian with reflective elements – 130 meters away.

    Please note that from year 2021, clause 4.4 of the Road Traffic Rules is in effect, which states that in the dark and in conditions of insufficient visibility, pedestrians moving on the roadway or on the side of the road must use reflectors.

  • After you take care of yourself and your family members – take care of your pets. Buy them a collar that glows or clothes with reflective elements.

How to wear reflective elements? 

  • They should be placed at the level of the driver’s vision;
  • The more reflectors, the better. Wear at least one reflector on each side (left and right legs or arms). Hang reflectors on both sides of a backpack or bag. This way the driver will see you no matter from which direction he is driving.
  • The most visible elements are with a size of more than 15 sq. cm.
  • Reflective elements are better visible on moving parts of the body (forearms, wrists, lower legs, ankles);
  • The most visible color of the reflector is yellow:
  • Special attention to children. There should be a lot of reflective elements on their clothes. Place them at the level of the child’s head, body and hands – due to their smaller height,  children are less visible on the roads. 
  • Replace old reflectors with new ones from time to time. Compare them with new ones. Hang both reflectors at eye level in a dark room and point a flashlight at them from a distance of four meters. If the old reflector emits less light, it is time to replace it.

What to do if you fall under the rubble of the house

If a collapse of a destroyed building happens and you are under it, then know that, most likely, rescuers are already on their way to the place. It happens that they can’t get to the place quickly in case that this is being prevented by hostilities. 

To help yourself until the experts arrive, follow this plan:

  1. Call for help! Inform where you are and what happened to you. If you are heard, wait while the blockage is being dismantled. 
  2. If no one hears you: try to free your arms and legs without sharp movements. 
  3. Assess the situation: can you see what has fallen on you, or are you able to disassemble the blockage?
  4. If so, cautiously begin to disassemble it. At the same time try not to touch what holds everything. 
  5. If you are not sure of your abilities, wait for help!
  6. Try to continue to announce yourself: call, shout, knock on the pipes loudly. 
  7. If still no one heard you, continue trying to clear the blockage.
  8. After release, examine yourself and provide self-help: stop the bleeding, fixate the broken limb.

How to fixate and refund property losses during wartime

According to KSE calculations, since the beginning of russia’s military aggression in Ukraine at least 129.9 thousand residential buildings, 2217 educational institutions, and 903 medical institutions have been damaged, destroyed or captured. 

After Ukraine’s victory, russia will be obliged to pay reparations to restore damaged infrastructure, as well as lost and destroyed property. We offer you a number of recommendations on how to fixate losses and what to do to receive compensation.

1) Ensure the proof of your rights to lost or damaged property

Keep documents on property rights, a technical passport, as well as an extract from the State Register of Property Rights to Real Estate (you can do this from the register website, as well as from the Diya portal). If possible make copies and pictures of them and save them on your phone, or even better, upload them to cloud storage.

2) Fixate the fact of damage or destruction on the spot 

In case of fire or emergency condition: 

  • call the employees of the State Emergency Service to eliminate the consequences and draw up the appropriate act; don’t forget to get a copy of this act;

  • apply to the relevant district state administration with a statement about drawing up a report of housing inspection or – try to draw up a report of destruction yourself;

  • be sure to take photos and videos of the destruction;

  • involve neighbors and witnesses of the destruction (fire, shelling, etc.), record their written explanations;

  • if available, save articles, photos and videos from the media about these events.

  • if you are in the territory of active hostilities, or if the work of State Emergency Service in your area is complicated, you can independently compile a description of the damage, involving neighbors and witnesses, and record them with the help of photo and video recording.

3) Submit a crime report to law enforcement agencies. 

Provide all collected evidence of destruction of property and be sure to obtain an extract from the Unified Register of Pretrial Investigations regarding this application. 

4) Save the collected data

Upload a copy of all collected documents, testimonies, photos and video materials to the cloud storage to avoid their loss. 

5) Report lost or damaged housing to the Government.

There are three ways: 

  • Remotely through the “Diya” application.

  • In person at the Center for Provision of Administrative Services (CSC) regardless of your place of residence or stay

  • In person at a notary regardless of your place of residence or stay

How to do it?

In “Diya” it is the simplest.

  • In the application, select the menu “Services”, “damaged property” and “get started”.

  • If the data about your housing is in the electronic register, they will be loaded automatically, if not, manually enter the type, area and address of the housing.

  • Choose the condition of your property. For example, there is damage, but not critical, or the house is completely destroyed.

  • Indicate whether your property belongs to cultural heritage sites and how many people lived there.

  • Indicate the date and nature of the damage, and include photos and videos if you have them. Leave your contact details.

A similar application with all personal data must be submitted in person to the National Register of Citizens of Ukraine or to a notary. With yourself you must have documents proving your identity, rights to the destroyed real estate, and evidence of destruction or damage that you have collected.

How to help the Ukrainian army if you are in the war zone?

The best help for a civilian in a combat zone is not to interfere with the military’s professional performance.

Another way to help effectively is to train and become part of the army or territorial defense forces.

Conditions for joining the Armed Forces of Ukraine
Details on joining the Territorial Defense Forces

If you do not plan to join The Armed Forces of Ukraine or territorial defense, consider supporting volunteer organizations that help the army.

Important information for the media, bloggers and all citizens who photograph or write about war and the army

According to the ORDER of the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, GENERAL VALERY ZALUZHNY:

What is categorically prohibited to be covered by the mass media during wartime:

  • names of bases and subdivisions, as well as their locations

  • the number of soldiers in bases and units

  • the number of weapons and equipment, their condition and place of storage

  • conditional marks of objects

Any information about:

  •  operations carried out or planned

  • system of protection and defense of military units

  • available military protection such as: weapons and equipment(except visible or obviously expressed)

  • procedure for engaging forces (military) and facilities (weapons)

  • intelligence gathering

  • movement and deployment of troops (names, numbers, routes)

  • military units and their tactics, methods of action

  • unique operations and their execution methods

  • the effectiveness of the enemy’s electronic warfare

  • postponed or canceled operations

  • missing or crashed aircraft, ship and search and rescue operations

  • plans for the security of our troops (disinformation, camouflage, countermeasures)

  • informational and psychological operations carried out or planned

  • propaganda or justification of russia’s large-scale armed aggression against Ukraine.

Do not post on social media:

  • consequences of hits by enemy’s missiles or projectiles or moments of their flight in the sky. By doing so you will help the enemy to adjust the fire.

  • time and place of “hits” (neither in publications nor in comments)

  • information about the work of the Ukrainian Air Defense Forces

  • a photo showing numbers, special markings and markings on destroyed or downed enemy equipment.

  • unverified information about victims or dead.

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