Friday, September 05, 2008

September is National Preparedness Month

With news of hurricanes, severe weather and possible power outages,
here are some resources that can help you develop a plan for your family,
prepare supplies, and learn more about how to respond:

Just in Case: how to be self-sufficient when the unexpected happens
Author Kathy Harrison guides readers through the empowering process of setting up such a home system with her OAR method — Organize existing supplies, Acquire additional necessities, Rotate everything for freshness. Her comprehensive coverage of emergency preparedness includes food storage, alternative heating sources, personal supplies for every family member, entertainment ideas, toiletry and proper clothing, pet supplies, emergency family communication plans, and neighborhood cooperatives.

In addition to preparing the home for extended periods without electricity, Harrison also discusses evacuation plans — where to go, how to meet up with family, what to pack, and how best to protect all that’s being left behind. Self-sufficiency at home or in a temporary safe haven takes away much of the fear and helplessness associated with disasters.

Essentials in Emergency Management: including the all-hazards approach by Brian J. Gallant
This book takes a broader approach, covering the history of emergency management, the National Incident Management System (NIMS), natural and technological hazards, how to handle pets in an emergency, the role of volunteers for emergency support functions particularly in the aftermath and recovery process, as well as useful charts and checklists for supply kits, an emergency response plan, and a severe weather manager's checklist.

Be alert, be aware, have a plan : the complete guide to protecting yourself, your home, your family by Neal Rawls with Sue Kovach
Being prepared means being in control. Here is hard-won advice from a veteran security expert for people who want to protect themselves and their families in any situation, including personal security, crime prevention, workplace safety, as well as natural disasters, and other concerns.

For more information, go to the Virginia Department of Emergency Management and also Virginia's
Ready Campaign website for an online supply kit checklist, family emergency plans and other useful tips.