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Tips on Disaster Preparedness

General advice on preparing your family and your community for natural and man-made disasters

  • Develop a communications plan for your family. Choose someone who does not live with you (preferably an out-of-town relative or friend) whom you and other family members can contact to check on each other in the event that you are separated during a disaster. Carry that person’s contact information in your purse or wallet.
  • Make sure children know their last name, phone number, address, and number for the out-of-town contact person.
  • Make sure every member of your family knows an alternate route home.
  • If family members can’t get home, designate a meeting place.
  • Know your community’s emergency evacuation route.
  • Learn how to shut off utilities such as gas, electricity, and water.
  • Assemble an emergency preparedness kit that will allow your family to camp out for three days. Assume you’ll be without electricity and running water.
  • Store your emergency supplies in sealed containers such as plastic tubs - taped shut.
  • Keep cash on hand; automated teller machines won’t be working if the power is out.
  • Learn CPR and first aid to help with medical emergencies.
  • Learn about emergency plans for your children’s school or daycare center.
  • If you’re a teen, find out whether your school has a group of student volunteers to help out in emergency situations. If not, offer to help start such a group. Or start a School Crime Watch.
  • Learn about your company’s emergency plan. Practice the plan. Learn exit routes.
  • Work with your Neighborhood Watch or civic association to create a disaster preparedness plan.
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