Disasters happen: Prepare now, learn how

By Anita Stoner - Preble County Public Health

PREBLE COUNTY — Tornados, severe storms, flooding, snow storms. Emergency situations can develop during any of these times. Are you ready? Do you have a plan? During September, National Preparedness Month , FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) encourages everyone to Prepare Now. Learn How.

Take time to learn lifesaving skills — such as CPR and first aid, check your insurance policies and coverage for the hazards you may face, such as flood, earthquakes, and tornados. Make sure to consider the costs associated with disasters and save for an emergency. Also, know how to take practical safety steps like shutting off water and gas.

In addition, talk with your family and make sure everyone knows the following:

• Know how you will receive emergency warnings.

• If the need arises to evacuate, make sure everyone knows where to go for shelter, which route to take, and how to meet up once you get there.

• Make sure to have a family communication plan in place; all members of the family should review and practice the plan.

• Have all family members’ and other important phone numbers written down or memorized.

• Have an emergency kit in your car and at least three days of food and water at home.

• Be sure to store all important documents – birth certificates, insurance policies, etc. – in a fire-proof safe or safety deposit box.

These are just some of the things you can do to be prepared. Visit www.ready.gov for more in depth information and resources, or contact your local Emergency Management Agency (EMA) at 937-456-1243.

To keep up with other public health-related issues make sure to check out Preble County Public Health online at www.preblecountyhealth.org, through Facebook at www.facebook.com/PrebleCoHealth and on Twitter at @PrebleCoHealth! We are also available Monday through Friday between the hours of 8 a.m.-4 p.m. by phone at 937-472-0087.

By Anita Stoner

Preble County Public Health