Dangerous tornadoes and strong storms have already struck areas of our country during the last two months, not to mention Ana, the first tropical storm of the year, already made landfall. Thus, the question, are you and your family ready?
These storms are only part of more rough weather to come.
We all must be ready, not just for hurricane season, but also for the summer storm season. When disasters hit, you’re either ready or you’re not.
Following are some very basic guidelines to help you prepare. These include:
1. Include your family in all of your preparations. Make sure they get their things ready. Storms can have very a serious effect, especially on kids. Be sure your family knows what to do in case you are not available. Make sure they have plenty of the required supplies on hand.
2. Prepare and secure your personal documents and other important items that you may have to take with you in the event of a short notice evacuation.
3. Prepare your home as best as you can to minimize damage. Take photos in advance and store them in a secure area with your insurance documents.
4. Find out what preparations have been made at your place of work. Ensure your contact information is up to date.
5. Know the “Rule of 72.” Depending on the level of destruction and the amount of damage after the storm, many emergency responders, including Fire/Rescue and the Sheriff’s Office, may not be able to reach many people for up to 72 hours or more. Be prepared to be on your own, not only with emergency supplies but also in case of medical emergencies. Have a good First Aid kit ready. Check the ones you have for items that have expired.
6. Work with your neighbors and watch out for one another. Many communities have residents who have completed Community Emergency Response Training (C.E.R.T.) training. These residents have completed special training in areas such as CPR/First Aid and emergency communications.
As we all saw after the strong storms rolled across the Midwest, disaster recovery operations involves community residents working together to pick up the pieces and supporting one another.
When the storms are rolling in is not the time to prepare.