Be Disaster Prepared With These 3 Steps
Don’t be caught off guard the next time a hurricane hits our area, a blizzard shuts down the roads, or flash floods leave you stranded. Here are three steps from Ready.Gov that every family should take to better ensure they are prepared to handle a disaster.
1. Be Informed
Knowing basic protective measures before a disaster strikes, such as where to find the latest Emergency Alerts or how to Evacuate Your Family, can make a big difference in moments of crisis. Review Ready.Gov’s Be Informed page for disaster-specific preparedness tips as well as basic protective measures for all types of hazards.
2. Make A Plan
Your family may not be together when a disaster strikes. Establish a plan of how you will contact each other, as well as where to go if someone can’t get home. Ready.Gov’s Make A Plan is chock full of helpful ideas and tips to creating your own plan. The Family Communications page is especially helpful for creating a family communication plan.
You might also want to check emergency plans for places you and your family frequent, such as work and school. Ready.Gov’s School and Worksplace has prepared a handy list of questions to ask.
3. Build A Kit
A disaster supplies kit should contain basic items you and your family might need in an emergency situation, such as water, non-perishable foods, first aid kits, and critical medications. Find helpful ideas and suggestions to build your family’s disaster preparedness kit at Ready.Gov’s Build A Kit. The Basic Disaster Supplies Kit reference list will help you put together a kit that is tailored to you and your family’s specific needs.
Get The Kids Involved!
Kids are affected by disasters too. Get them involved building a disaster preparedness kit, and include a few of their own items. Make sure they know the plan, especially how to contact you. Not sure how to open up the lines of communications? Go to Ready.Gov’s Kids page for helpful tips to getting the kids on board with your family’s disaster preparedness plan.
Natural disasters can be especially scary for kids. Use the Know The Facts, Be Empowered to help quell the “scare factor.” Help your kids better understand natural disasters that might occur in your area, and what steps they can do to stay safe if one happens.
Be Disaster Prepared On The Go
FEMA’s mobile app for phones and tablets can help you be prepared in a moment’s notice, no matter where you are. The app is full of helpful disaster preparedness information such as disaster safety tips, an interactive emergency kit list, a section to store emergency meeting locations, and even a map with shelters open in your area.
The FEMA mobile app is free and available in both English and Spanish for Apple, Android, and Blackberry devices.
Be informed. Get prepared. Stay safe.
Do you have a disaster preparedness plan in place? A disaster kit tailored to your family’s specific needs, and the types of natural disasters that can occur in your area? If not, you might want to invest some time in creating one. And if you have one, great! Now might be the time to review and refresh it if it’s been a while.
Images from Ready.Gov and FEMA.