Individual & Community Preparedness
updated: Sep 04, 2013, 12:00 PM
Source: Office of Emergency Management
• Preparedness Backpack
• Family Matters
• Fast-Moving Flames
School bells are ringing for many students across the nation. As your child heads back to class, are they
ready for emergency situations that can arise? Prepare yourself and children now to be disaster-ready
throughout the school year. In addition to keeping your emergency contact information up-to-date at
your child's school, follow these steps:
• Find out where children will be taken if they have to evacuate the school;
• Ask if they store enough food, water and other supplies in case they have to "shelter-in-place;"
• Designate a friend or relative to pick up your children in an emergency and make sure the school
knows who that person is; and
• Ask how they will communicate with families during a crisis.
Remember, back-to-school preparedness means more than buying notebooks and pencils! Visit the new
Ready Kids site for valuable tools to help kids, parents and teachers prepare for emergencies.
September is National Preparedness Month - the annual campaign to encourage Americans to take steps
to prepare for emergencies in their homes, schools, organizations, businesses and communities. We
want to encourage you - as individuals and families - to pledge to prepare during the month of
September but we also want to encourage you and your family to make preparedness a part of your
daily life every day moving forward. Here are three easy steps for you and your family to take to get
involved and be better prepared:
Step 1: Pledge to Prepare
The first step to getting involved is to register as a coalition member at Ready.gov/pledge. Members will
have access to the online community, resources and tools available to help get you and your family
prepared for an emergency.
Step 2: Take a Free Online Preparedness Course
Developed in partnership with the Emergency Management Institute and in consultation with faith-
based and community partners, FEMA's "IS-909 Community Preparedness: Implementing Simple
Activities for Everyone" training course will introduce you to a program for promoting individual and
community preparedness through simple and engaging activities. The course is free, available online
and is designed for anyone to use in coordination with your local emergency preparedness partners.
Step 3: Implement Simple Preparedness Activities
FEMA has made available to the public, free training and resources to help you and your family to take
action and implement simple preparedness activities. Some of the simple activities include:
• Creating a no-cost or low-cost disaster kit;
• Preparing for utility outages; and
• How to use a fire extinguisher.
FAST MOVING FLAMES
Raging wildfires near Yosemite National Park have threatened thousands of homes, forced evacuations
and initiated a state of emergency for the San Francisco Bay Area. The fire described as "one of the
largest in recent California history" may also impact the area's water supply and power grid. If these
fast-moving flames are in your area, do you know what to do? Take these steps to stay safe if you are at
• Arrange temporary housing with a friend or relative outside of the area in case you need to evacuate;
• Shut off any natural gas, propane or fuel oil supplies at the source;
• Fill up any pools, tubs or garbage cans with water;
• Place valuables that cannot be damaged by water in a pool or pond. Put other valuables in the car; and
• Remove flammable drapes or curtains.
If advised to evacuate, do so immediately taking your disaster supply kit with you. Be sure to let
someone know where you will be.
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