National Weather Service Provides Preparedness Tips

Some disasters are so severe that people have to vacate their homes to stay safe. That’s why we recommend having a bug-out bag packed and ready to grab at a moment’s notice.

Most emergencies, including many severe weather events that knock out electrical power for varying amounts of time do not require an evacuation.

But they do require preparation. It’s important to have a plan in place in case your power goes out. Whether it’s only for a couple of hours or it takes a week for it to be restored.

And it’s not only 4Patriots that suggests you be ready for the type of weather emergency that occurred on the East Coast last weekend. Several dot-gov websites recommend the same thing.

The National Weather Service (NWS) wants people to be prepared year-round for hazardous weather. So, they’ve established National Seasonal Safety Campaigns in order to build a “Weather-Ready Nation.”

Each campaign includes seasonal resources providing information vital to keeping people safe in weather emergencies. That includes the approaching spring, notorious for extreme weather events.

The materials include websites, articles, social media, infographics, videos and other content connected to the type of extreme weather events most likely to occur in a given area.

You can check out the NWS’s Weather and Water Preparedness Events Calendar at:

http://www.nws.noaa.gov/om/severeweather/severewxcal.shtml.

In the meantime, it’s important to have as many emergency supplies stockpiled in your home as possible, because it’s very likely that’s where you’ll hunker down to handle the next crisis. You should also keep a smaller kit at your place of work if you can.

Among the items you should have on hand are:

  • Water- 1.5 gallons per person per day, for a minimum of three days.
  • Food – At least a three-day supply of non-perishables.
  • Flashlights and batteries.
  • First-aid kit.
  • Battery-powered radio.
  • Wrench or pliers for turning off utilities, if necessary.
  • Moist towelettes and paper towels.
  • Fire extinguisher.
  • Personal hygiene items.
  • Disinfectant and bleach.

Of course, an extreme weather event could force you away from your home temporarily. So, it’s a good idea to have some additional items ready to take with you. They include:

  • Prescription and over-the-counter medications.
  • Warm clothes including coats, gloves, hats and rain gear.
  • Sturdy shoes or boots.
  • Sleeping bags and blankets.
  • A tent.
  • Plastic sheeting and duct tape.
  • Compass
  • Fire starters.
  • Signal flares.
  • Battery-powered tools.
  • A whistle to signal for help.
  • Important family documents.
  • Pet supplies.

Those are only partial lists. No doubt you can think of additional items that would be beneficial, especially if the emergency extends beyond three days.

It’s good to see that government agencies are helping people prepare for emergencies. But at the end of the day, we know we need to be self-reliant to survive disasters.

Don’t depend on Fema or the Red Cross for help in a crisis – do everything within your power to be as prepared as possible.

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