September is National Preparedness Month
September is National Preparedness Month (NPM). It is a time to prepare yourself and those in your care for emergencies and disasters. If you’ve seen the news recently, you know that emergencies can happen unexpectedly in communities just like yours, to people like you. We’ve seen tornado outbreaks, river floods and flash floods, historic earthquakes, tsunamis, and even water main breaks and power outages in U.S. cities affecting millions of people for days at a time.
Police, fire and rescue may not always be able to reach you quickly in an emergency or disaster. The most important step you can take in helping your local responders is being able to take care of yourself and those in your care; the more people who are prepared, the quicker the community will recover.
This September, please prepare and plan in the event you must go for three days without electricity, water service, access to a supermarket, or local services for several days. Just follow these four steps:
- Stay Informed - Information is available from federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial resources. Visit Ready Army to learn what to do before, during, and after an emergency.
- Make a Plan - Discuss, agree on, and document an emergency plan with those in your care. Work together with neighbors, colleagues, and others to build community resilience. Visit Ready Army to learn more about making your plan.
- Build a Kit - Keep enough emergency supplies - water, nonperishable food, first aid, prescriptions, flashlight, and battery-powered radio on hand - for you and those in your care. Visit Ready Army for tips on building a kit.
- Get Involved - There are many ways to get involved especially before a disaster occurs. The whole community can participate in programs and activities to make their families, homes and places of worship safer from risks and threats. Community leaders agree that the formula for ensuring a safer homeland consists of volunteers, a trained and informed public, and increased support of emergency response agencies during disasters.
By taking a few simple actions, you can make your family safer. Consider planning a Ready Kids event in your community to encourage families to get prepared with their children.
Topics to Help You Be Ready and Prepared
Select a topic to learn more about how you and your family can be prepared and ready.
- Preparedness for Individuals with Access and Functional Needs
- Preparedness on a Budget
- Preparedness for Pet and Animal Owners
If you or someone close to you has a disability or other access or functional needs, you may have to take additional steps to protect yourself and your family. Each person's needs and abilities are unique, but every individual can take important steps to prepare for all kinds of emergencies and put plans in place. By evaluating your own personal needs and making an emergency plan, you can be better prepared for any situation.
- Consider how a disaster might affect your individual needs or the needs of someone you care for
- It's possible that you will not have access to a medical facility or even a drugstore. Plan to make it on your own, at least for a period of time.
- Identify what kind of resources you use on a daily basis and what you might do if they are limited or not available.
- Build a Kit with your unique consideration in mind. What do you need to maintain your health, safety and independence?
For more information, check out:
- Ready Army’s tips for Soldiers and Families with special needs
- FEMA Office of Disability Integration and Coordination
- "Preparing Makes Sense for People with Disabilities and Other Access and Functional Needs"-
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It is no secret that many families and individuals are looking to cut back on spending. But with the frequency of disasters, both natural and manmade, can you afford not to be prepared? Preparedness doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg.
September is National Preparedness Month, and we are asking you to help your family and friends prepare for whatever may come. Here are a few tips on how you can protect those that matter to you without spending a fortune.
- Make a Plan. Work with you family and neighbors to make an emergency plan for the types of disasters that affect your area. Make sure everyone in your family understands where to go and what to do in case of an emergency. You can download Family Emergency Plan templates Ready.gov/make-a-plan.
- Update Contact Information. Having accurate records for family, friends and neighbors will help you stay in contact and possibly help those in need. Make sure updated contact information is posted in visible places throughout your house and workplace. Family Emergency Plan
- Check Your Policy. Review your insurance policy annually and make any necessary changes- and renters, do the same too! When a disaster strikes, you want to know that your coverage will get you back on your feet.
- Make a Ready List. You may not need all of the items in ready-made preparedness kits. Choose the essentials that fit your needs and budget. Don’t forget to keep supplies at work and in your car. Sample Ready Lists can be found at Ready.gov/build-a-kit.
- Plan Your Purchases. You can save money by thinking ahead. Don’t buy preparedness items just before a storm when they’re expensive and supplies will be in high demand. Buy items at the end of the season when you can get good deals.
- Shop Sales. Shop at sales and used goods stores. Buy preparedness items throughout the year, instead of all at once, and you won’t notice the cost as much.
- Make Sure it Keeps. Store water in safe, containers. You don’t need to buy expensive bottled water, just make sure your water containers are disinfected and airtight.
- Request a Gift. We all get things we don’t need. Suggest preparedness supplies as gifts from your friends and family. It just might save your life.
- Trade a Night Out. Trade one night out to fund your 72-hour kit. Taking a family of four to the movies can cost upwards of $80. Just one night staying in could fund your Ready kit.
Start now! Take small steps toward preparedness and before you know it, you will be Ready!
For more information, check out:
If you are like millions of animal owners nationwide, your animal is an important member of your household. When planning your family for disaster, don’t overlook the needs of your animals or pets. The likelihood that you and your animals will survive an emergency such as a fire or flood, tornado or any of the all hazards depends largely on emergency planning done today.
September is National Preparedness Month (NPM); while you make a plan to prepare your families also consider your animal or pet. Some of the things you can do to prepare for the unexpected, such as assembling an animal emergency supply kit and developing an animal care buddy system, are the same for any emergency. Whether you decide to stay put in an emergency or evacuate to a safer location, you will need to make plans in advance for your animals and pets. Keep in mind that what's best for you is typically what's best for your animals.
If you evacuate your home, DO NOT LEAVE ANIMALS OR PETS BEHIND! Most cannot survive alone and if by some remote chance they do, you may not be able to find them when you return.
If you are going to a public shelter, it is important to understand that animals may not be allowed inside. Plan in advance for shelter alternatives that will work for both you and your animals; consider loved ones or friends outside of your immediate area who would be willing to host you and your animal or pet in an emergency.
Make a back-up emergency plan in case you can't care for your animals yourself. Develop a buddy system with neighbors, friends, and relatives to make sure that someone is available to care for your animals, if you are unable to do so.
For more information, check out: