National Preparedness Month

Hurricane Issac, the slow-moving tropical cyclone that developed from a tropical wave in waters east of the Lesser Antilles, caused severe damage along the northern Gulf Coast of the United States this past August.

In the wake of Hurricane Issac, President Barack Obama declared September to be National Preparedness Month so that we may “renew our commitment to promoting emergency preparedness in homes, businesses, and communities nationwide, and to [build] an America more ready and resilient than ever before.”

Ready.gov has everything you need to know to prepare yourself and your family.

Be Informed.
Learn about natural disasters (like drought, earthquakes, floods, and hurricanes), pandemics,  technological & accidental hazards (like blackouts, hazardous materials incidents, and nuclear power plants), terrorist hazards, options for protection, and recovering from disaster.

Being educated about possible hazards and disasters will help you if these events ever occur because you will know what to expect.

Make a Plan.
It’s important to make a plan with your family to choose a safe place, choose a method of communication, and how to get back together with one another.  You can download a Family Emergency Plan, fill it out, and give it to members or your family, to make sure everyone in your family is on the same page.

Build a Kit.
Put together a kit of basic disasters supplies ahead of time.  This kit will come in handy in the event you and your family need to evacuate at a moment’s notice.  FEMA recommends having enough food, water, and other supplies to last for at least 72 hours.  Check out this list of basic disaster supplies, how to maintain your kit, and where to store the kit for easy accessibility.

Get Involved.
Volunteer in your community!  Before a disaster strikes, be apart of your community’s planning process.  Connect with your local emergency planning group, and get disaster response training.  If there is no plan for your community, start a preparedness project!

For information about how hurricanes and other natural disasters impact our islands visit the  Pacific Disaster Center website.  You can even download their FREE Disaster Alert mobile app, available for Android and iPhone!

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