Make a Plan
National Preparedness Month is in full swing! This year’s theme is “A Lasting Legacy: The life you’ve built is worth protecting.” Therefore, throughout September we are sharing tips and best practices related to individual, household, and community preparedness. Preparing for disasters will help create a lasting legacy for you and your family.
What’s the best place to start preparing? Make a plan!
An emergency plan is a detailed, written set of actions you will take in the event of an emergency. It includes things like where you’ll go if you cannot shelter in place, how you’ll communicate with loved ones both near and far, what your plans are for your pets, and more. For a full description of what to include in your emergency plan, visit Ready.gov/plan
Remember : writing your emergency plan down and discussing it with your family, friends, and neighbors can help manage any fear that exists around potential disasters. Involving kids in the planning process can help ease their anxiety and build confidence as they learn what to do in an emergency.
Once you’ve finalized your plan, bring your neighbors and loved ones into the conversation. Sharing your plan saves valuable time for first responders who are checking on people after a disaster. Furthermore, it gives your loved ones peace of mind that you will be safe.
Useful Tip : appoint an out of town friend or family member as your designated point of contact. Put them in charge of reaching out to designated people to let them know that you are safe after a disaster. By notifying your “point of contact” with one call, you save time and resources. This is particularly important if there is prolonged power loss or damage to communication services.
Without a doubt, an emergency plan is the foundation for individual and family preparedness. The more prepared that you and your household are, the less reliant on post-disaster services you will need be. As a result, more of your time and energy can be spent helping others, which helps your community recovery in the long run.
There’s no better time to start preparing than today! For more information on how to create a written emergency plan, including downloadable plan templates, videos, and activities, visit www.ready.gov/plan. Visit the National Hurricane Center website for up to date, reliable forecasts. Finally, remember to visit VITEMA’s website or sign up for AlertVI to get USVI specific alerts, watches, and warnings.