In a serious emergency, you may not be able to communicate with First Responders or EMTs. Be sure to put essential details someplace that is easy to find - maybe on the back of the front door to your home, in a car's glove box, in a bug-out bag; or in a pocket.
What's essential? Here's one list:
Most smartphones also allow you to enter your emergency information in a section that can be accessed by first responders, without getting into your other personal information. It's a good idea to do that, in addition to having this information also on paper (paper doesn't need batteries to be readable).
Listos California offers pre-made Disaster Ready Cards:
Listos California breaks down getting prepared into 5 easy steps, and has interactive online videos to help us get started.
In any type of emergency we may be asked to evacuate if it could be too dangerous to stay in place. See the page for If you have to evacuate for how to plan for that possibility.
Expect power outages in any disaster. Ready.gov advises:
Also check the storage needs for necessary, medications, and consider alternate or back-up power for necessary medical devices. Check the resource page in this guide for multi-day power outages, too.
A "shelter in place" order means that people are asked to stay indoors where they are (usually at home). Depending on the emergency, electrical power may go out, or it might stay on; ditto water supply.
A shelter-in-place kit is similar to a survival kit (see the page in this guide for If you have to evacuate) but assumes that people have supplies at home. It is a good idea to have on hand:
Don't forget your service animals, pets, and other animals!
They'll need food, water, and shelter (crates or animal carriers) if they need to be moved away from home.
Ideally, preparing for emergencies isn't something we do only once. It's important for emergency supplies to be regularly updated (batteries are fresh, food is still good) and that our information is current.
This calendar of monthly activities can make it easier to keep emergency supplies and preparedness skills up to date:
Once an emergency response team gives the "all clear" to return home after evacuation, there still may be dangers or hazards, as well as clean-up work to do. Continue to follow notification and advice from your local office of emergency services.
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