Over the last few years we have seen an increasing number of billboards and mobile signs stating, “Are you prepared for bad weather and disaster?” The State of Kentucky website (http:kyem.ky.gov/preparedness.htm) has links available to assist you in your preparation. In Kentucky we have the threat of bad weather and the possibility of an earthquake, as we live near the New Madrid fault. In the event of an emergency, the government may be unable to respond immediately or adequately. For the safety of your family, “Be prepared! You should have at least a three day supply of food and water for each member of your family, along with essentials such as: medicine, flash lights, radio, extra batteries, matches, candles, first aid supplies, etc.”
In the aftermath of the earthquake in Japan, within a matter of days the store shelves were left bare, with no flashlights, water or other basic necessities available. Due to the interruption of road transportation, refilling the shelves take much more time. Do not wait until the disaster to obtain what you do not have.
We all have families, who in the event of a disaster, will be much better off if you prepare in advance. Have similar small bags in each of your vehicles so if you are stranded away from home you will still be prepared with necessities.
We are always hopeful disasters will not happen to us! But would you not feel better knowing you are ready to ride out the storm with food and water for your children?
PLANNING FOR DISASTER:
(from KY Division of Emergency Management)
“Be Aware – Be Prepared – Have a Plan – Make a Kit”
Know in advance your weather forecasts
Stay tuned to your local broadcasting stations
Discuss conditions with family members and know their location during times of known potentially threatening conditions.
Discuss your plan with family members and neighbors
Review your plan periodically for necessary updates
Refresh you emergency kit(s) periodically
Drill: practice your plan with household members
Have a Plan:
Utilities: Written instructions for how to turn off electricity, gas and water if authorities advise you to do so. (Remember, you’ll need a professional to turn them back on)
Shelter: Identify safe locations within your residence
Contacts: Written contact information should include; relatives, neighbors, utility companies, employers (employees) and local emergency contact telephone numbers
Evacuate: Predetermine evacuation routes. Identify where you could go if told to evacuate Choose several places: a friend or relative’s home in another town, a motel, or a shelter
Children: Make back up plans for children in case you (or they) can’t get home in an emergency
Vehicles: Maintain a half tank of fuel in vehicles. Move vehicles from under trees during possible wind events. Keep an “Emergency Go Kit” in the vehicle.
Medications: prepare a list of all prescription drugs
Share your plan with others. It is suggested to include sharing it with contacts in another region or even another state.
Make a Kit:
First aid kit and essential medications (to include prescription meds)
Canned food and can opener
At least three gallons of water per person
Protective clothing, rainwear, and bedding or sleeping bags
Battery-powered radio, flashlight, and extra batteries
Waterproof matches, candles
Local phone book
Special items for infants, elderly, or disabled family members
Extra set of car keys
Katrina Hood, MD. FAAP
Pediatric & Adolescent Associates