September Is National Preparedness Month
September 20, 2019
Sometimes you’ll get a warning when a disaster is about to strike, but more often than not, they arise unexpectedly. But that doesn’t you can’t be prepared. Arm yourself with knowledge about potential emergencies and make sure you’re ready for anything. Now is the perfect time to do it, given that September serves as National Preparedness Month.
FEMA leads the preparedness charge each September, along with other government and public organizations. Its team highlights the resources available to everyone to help prepare for disasters and also offers a few tips on how to make the best use of them. If you’re not sure where to start, here are a few things you can do this National Preparedness Month.
Know where to look for emergency alerts and disaster-related info. If a tornado touches down or severe storms suddenly descend, will you be among the first to know? As long as you pay close attention to your phone, you should be. All wireless users now receive emergency alerts when rough weather is in the area, so make sure you keep an eye out for one when the weather looks questionable. Also, consider following local news organizations on social media for minute-by-minute updates, and do a bit of research about what types of natural disasters are most likely in your region.
Get plans in place for all possibilities. Do you know the best route to take if you’re asked to evacuate? How about the nearest shelter in case evacuation isn’t an option? This month is a great time to figure out the basics and create a full emergency plan for your family. If you have family or friends nearby who may need assistance, especially older adults, factor them into your plans.
Gather your supplies. If you were to get trapped in your home for days (or even weeks) at a time, will you be ready? You’ll be able to confidently answer, “Yes!” as soon as you build a supply kit. Start with this checklist from FEMA, which includes everything from food and water to a hand-cranked radio in case the electricity goes out.
Take action in your community. Your local community probably offers even more resources to prepare for emergencies, especially if you live somewhere that regularly experiences events like hurricanes or tornadoes. Start researching local organizations that can help in case of emergency, and consider volunteering your time with them in order to do your part!