Natural disasters can happen in a blink of an eye. It is never too early to prepare and be ready. The fall brings hurricanes, the winter brings snow, the spring brings tornados, and the summer brings lots of heat. Knowing how to prepare for these occasions is extremely important.
Hurricane Harvey reminds us of the images of Hurricane Katrina and the overwhelming damage that can be done by natural disasters. How can we prepare for these events? The Federal Emergency Management Agency outlines general guidelines for preparedness.
- Make a family emergency communication plan and include your pets.
- Identify an out of town emergency contact to coordinate information with family/friends.
- Check on neighbors.
- Keep an emergency kit wherever you spend time: home, car, work etc.
- Download the FEMA App and set up local alerts
- Listen to local officials by radio, TV, or social media and take action.
- Practice your preparedness plans with a drill or exercise.
- Take a first aid class so you can help until first responders arrive.
- Print the monthly preparedness
Looking for Friends, Family Members, and Loved Ones
Often times during natural disasters our loved ones can be misplaced, out of phone service and power. The Red Cross has provided a resource that allows individuals to mark themselves as safe, and at the same time provides a database of those individuals for family members to search. For access to this database click here.
Assistance During Disaster
If you find yourself in a disaster and need assistance the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will provide assistance. In order to apply for assistance click here.
Natural disasters not only bring about physical destruction, but they bring personal worry and stress as well. To reach the Stress and Disaster Relief Hotline click here.
How Can You Help During a Disaster?
Are you wanting to help your fellow citizens during the time of a disaster? The Virginia Voluntary Organizations Active in Disasters program provides a database of organizations and how you can help with any disaster no matter where it is located in the United States. To find an organization click here.