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.
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 at least three days without electricity, water service, access to a supermarket, or many other local services for several days. Just follow these four steps:
1. Stay Informed: Information is available from federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial resources, including City of Cape Girardeau online resources (website, Facebook, Twitter). Access Ready.gov to learn what to do before, during, and after an emergency.
2. Make a Plan: Discuss, agree on, and document an emergency plan with those in your care. For sample plans, see Ready.gov. Work together with neighbors, colleagues, and others to build community resilience.
3. Build a Kit: Keep enough emergency supplies – water, nonperishable food, first aid, prescriptions, flashlight, and a battery-powered radio on hand – for you and those in your care.
4. 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 just these few simple actions, you can make your family safer. For more information, check out National Preparedness Month online at ready.gov/september and follow @Readygov and @PrepareAthon on Twitter.