September is National Preparedness Month, an annual opportunity for families and communities to help raise awareness and take steps to be better prepared for emergencies. During National Preparedness Month and throughout the year, the Fresno County Office of Emergency Services (OES) encourages all Fresno County residents to take a proactive approach in personal preparedness.
National Preparedness Month is recognized every September and is part of FEMA’s Ready Campaign. This year’s theme is “Prepared, Not Scared”, and offers a weekly focus and resources on different elements of preparedness including financial preparedness, making a family emergency plan, youth preparedness, and community involvement.
Throughout the month check out Ready.gov for some great information about National Preparedness Month and how you can help you, your family and your community get better prepared for an emergency.
Emergency Preparedness Basics
So what does it take to be prepared for emergencies? In getting started on your emergency preparedness efforts it’s as simple as three steps…
Get a kit
Being prepared means having your own food, water, and other supplies to last for at least 72 hours. A disaster supplies kit is a collection of basic items your household may need in the event of an emergency. Remember that emergency kits are not “one size fits all.” It is important to items specific to the needs of every member of your household, including your pets.
Make a plan
Your family may not be together if a disaster strikes, so it is important to know which types of disasters could affect your area. Know how you’ll contact one another and reconnect if separated. Establish a family meeting place that’s familiar and easy to find.
Meet with your family members and consider the specific needs of everyone in the event of an emergency. Think about the following, and put it into practice to ensure you’re all on the same page.
- How will I receive emergency alerts and warnings?
- What is my shelter plan?
- What is my evacuation route?
- What is my family/household communication plan?
Learn the types of disasters or emergencies that may likely occur in your area. These events can range from those affecting only you and your family, like a home fire or medical emergency, to those affecting your entire community, like an earthquake or flood.
- Identify how local authorities will notify you during a disaster and how you will get information, whether through local radio, TV or NOAA Weather Radio stations or channels.
- Know the difference between different weather alerts such as watches and warnings and what actions to take in each.
- Know what actions to take to protect yourself during disasters that may occur in areas where you travel or have moved recently. For example, if you travel to a place where earthquakes are common and you are not familiar with them, make sure you know what to do to protect yourself should one occur.
- Make sure that at least one member of your household is trained in first aid and CPR and knows how to use an automated external defibrillator (AED). This training is useful in many emergency situations.
You can also sign up to receive emergency alerts to be notified of important information during an emergency. Sign up here to receive alerts from the Fresno County Sheriff’s Office.
Helpful Fresno County Emergency Preparedness Links/Resources
- Fresno County Office of Emergency Services
- Fresno County Sheriff’s Office
- Fresno County Department of Public Health
- Fresno County Fire Protection District
- American Red Cross of Central California
- California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services
- 10 Ways to Be Prepared