It is important for you, family and /or caregiver to have an emergency disaster plan. Natural occurring disasters and human caused disasters can strike at any time and any place. There are three actions one may take to prepare, make a difference and save lives: get a kit, make a plan, and be informed.

The first step is Get a kit. You should pack basic supplies in an easy to carry emergency kit to use at home, or carry with you in case you have to evacuate from home. When preparing the kit, consider all of the needs of the family including your pets. Some of the supplies recommended by the American Red Cross should include:

  • Water- one gallon per person per day (3 day supply for evacuation from home and 2 week supply for home)
  • Food- non-perishable easy to prepare items
  • Batteries & flashlight
  • Battery or hand-cranked NOAA Weather Radio
  • First Aid Kit
  • Cell phone with charger
  • Medications, medication list, pharmacy /physician contact numbers
  • Medical assistive devices
  • Copies of personal documents & family emergency contact information
  • Emergency blanket
  • Map
  • Extra Cash

The next step should include all family members to Make a plan. When discussing the plan, make sure you decide and assign responsibilities for each member of the household. It is important to decide what to do if separated during an emergency by deciding on two places to meet in case of a home fire, or outside your neighborhood in case of evacuation. You should decide on an emergency route and emergency shelter for the family and pets. Choose an out- of -area emergency contact person in which you can stay in touch by text or cell phone.

The most important step is to Be informed. When natural disasters strike your neighborhood, the community can change in a minute and resources can be disrupted such as groceries, utilities, and fuel. It is important to be informed of possible weather alerts in your area and know what actions to take. Make sure at least one family member knows CPR and the use of an automated external defibrillator (AED).