Preparedness is everyone's responsibility

 

Emergencies are part of life. Fire, police and emergency medical services may be delayed in an emergency or unable to respond. Whether it's tornadoes, flooding, winter storms or an act of terrorism, emergencies can occur quickly and without warning. Although we cannot prevent emergencies, there we can prepare for them.

 

Loiza, Puerto Rico, Sept. 21, 2017. Diggers and small boats are being used to help people trapped in their houses due to the flooding, caused by Hurricane Maria. Loiza is a coastal municipality that got severely affected by the category 4 hurricane. Photo by Yuisa Rios/FEMA.Recent disasters have shown the importance of having an emergency supply kit and a family communication plan in place well in advance of any wildfire, storm, or flood. Emergency responders may be overloaded, or weather conditions may prevent help from reaching you right away.

 

You can do something right now in case the worst happens. What if you were trapped in your home and a blizzard or ice storm has knocked out the power in your county? What if power were unavailable in several counties, and downed trees and heavy snow prevented anyone from reaching you, or kept you from getting out to get the food, water, or other life-sustaining supplies you need?

There are three simple steps you can take:

  • Build a kit. Your emergency supply kit should have everything you need to sustain you and your family (including your pets) for a minimum of 3 days, and it is recommended you have enough supplies for up to two weeks. Get a checklist you can use to put together your own kit.

  • Make a plan. Knowing what to do in the event of an emergency is key. Make sure everyone in your family knows what to do. Get your family plan here.

  • Be Aware. Learn about the hazards that can affect your community, and learn how to get information about current weather and road conditions.