Disasters disrupt hundreds of thousands of lives every year. Disasters have long-lasting effects, both to people and property. If a disaster occurs in our community, local government and disaster-relief organizations will try to help you, but you need to be ready to help yourself and your family members.
Local emergency responders may not be able to reach you immediately, or they may need to focus their efforts elsewhere. You should know how to respond to severe weather or any disaster that could occur in your area—hurricanes, earthquakes, extreme cold, flooding, or terrorism. You should also be ready to be self-sufficient for at least three days. This might mean providing your own shelter, first aid, food, water, and sanitation.
Take Steps in Advance
1. Make a Preparedness Kit.
2. Get a Communications Plan including signing up for your local emergency communications system such as Code Red.
3. Practice your plan.
Basic Disaster Supplies Kit
To assemble your kit, store items in airtight plastic bags and put your entire disaster supplies kit in an easy-to-carry container such as a duffel bag.
A basic emergency supply kit should include the following items:
- Water: One gallon per person per day for at least three days, for drinking and sanitation
- Food: At least a three-day supply of non-perishable food such as canned meat, vegetables, fruit, etc.
- Manual can opener for food
- Battery-powered or hand crank radio
- Flashlight, including extra batteries
- Basic first aid kit
- Whistle to signal for help - SEKMCHD has a few whistles for distribution, please ask your local public health agency
- Dust mask
- Plastic sheeting and duct tape (to shelter in place)
- Cell phone with chargers and a backup battery
- Masks (for everyone ages 2 and above), soap, hand sanitizer, disinfecting wipes to disinfect surfaces
- Garbage bags and plastic ties (for personal sanitation)
- Prescription medications
- Non-prescription medications such as pain relievers, anti-diarrhea medication, antacids or laxatives
- Pet food and extra water for your pet
- Important family documents such as copies of insurance policies, identification and bank account records saved electronically or in a waterproof, portable container
- Sturdy shoes
- Matches in a waterproof container
- Paper and pencil
If you have questions related to basic emergency preparedness, please contact SEKMCHD's Regional Public Health Preparedness Coordinator.
Susan Belt, MT(ASCP)
Regional Public Health Preparedness Coordinator
Cell: (785) 640-3633