Disasters don’t plan ahead but you can. September is National Preparedness Month and we all have a responsibility to make sure that we are ready if and when an emergency happens. How can you do your part? Have a plan for yourself and your family; look out for neighbors who may need help; encourage others to prepare; and stay aware and informed.
Step one: Make a Plan
Put together a plan and talk about it with your family. If you have to evacuate, where will you go? What will you take? How will you get there? Sounds simple enough but it’s a lot easier to plan ahead and try and figure it out at the last minute.
Step two: Build a Kit
Do you have an emergency kit? If so, when’s the last time you checked to make sure everything you need is there and up to date? An emergency kit is essential. Just look at Hurricane Matthew. A lot of us were without power for days and even weeks. Making a kit is easy and could come in very handy whether you have to evacuate or not.
Step three: Maintain Situational Awareness
Watch or listen to local news when you can and always pay attention to the weather. There’s a FEMA app that you can download that will allow you to receive alerts from the National Weather Service for up to five locations. Learn how to shelter in place if need be but be ready to go if you are prompted to evacuate. Check with your local emergency management agency to find out if there is an alert notification system that allows you to register in order to receive emergency alerts when something is going on in your county.