Friday, June 15 2012
A basic emergency supply kit could include the following recommended items:
Once you have gathered the supplies for a basic emergency kit, you may want to consider adding the following items:
Friday, June 08 2012
It is better to send text messages than to call when natural disasters strike and networks get congested, a senior U.S. official said on Wednesday, also urging people to add battery-powered cell phone chargers to their storm emergency kits.
Craig Fugate, head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, told reporters that forecasts for a "normal" Atlantic hurricane season should not keep those in potentially affected areas from getting ready for storms that could make landfall.
"There is no forecast yet that says where they are going to hit or not hit. So if you live along the Gulf Coast, the Atlantic, and as far inland as the folks in Vermont found out last year, you need to be prepared for this hurricane season," Fugate said at a White House news briefing.
The U.S. government is working to extend its public alert warning system beyond radio and television to mobile networks, Fugate said, noting that most new and upgraded cell phones have the capacity to receive such emergency notices.
Households without fixed-line phones should be ready to charge cell phones during power cuts, the FEMA administrator said, also calling on families to make alternative communication plans for when wireless networks are congested.
"When there's a big crisis, don't try to call people on your phones - text message. It's a lot faster and gets through. Use social media to update people ... and also be prepared when power outages occur how you're going to keep your electronic devices charged," Fugate said. "Add to your evacuation kits your cell phone chargers."
(Reporting by Laura MacInnis; Editing by Anthony Boadle) http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/05/31/uk-usa-weather-storms-idUSLNE84U01D20120531
Tuesday, May 29 2012
Sometimes disaster strikes, despite your best efforts to prevent it. And that means you should always be ready for the unexpected.
The right emergency gear will help you protect your home and family, as well as deal with unpleasant realities like a post-storm power outage or broken windows.
Here are the most critical tools and products to have on hand when things go wrong.
Essential detection and safety devices
Throughout the house
Place wireless water alarms under sinks, behind the fridge, anywhere that water would pool if there's a leak -- they'll sound off at the slightest hint of moisture. Zircon Leak Alert three-pack, $25; amazon.com
Keep a fire extinguisher on every floor of your home, and an extra one in the kitchen, where the majority of fires start (some insurance policies will give you a discount on your premium for having them). Get multipurpose A:B:C extinguishers that douse flames from three types of fires: ordinary combustibles, flammable liquids, and electrical. Opt for a five-pound fire extinguisher, which is light enough for most people to use easily. Check the pressure gauges periodically and have the extinguishers recharged when the pressure drops. Kidde Full Home fire extinguisher, $40; homedepot.com
Supplement hard-wired smoke detectors (if you have them) with at least one battery-powered model per floor, especially in the kitchen and near bedrooms. Go with a model with a sealed-in, 10-year lithium battery to spare you frequent battery replacement. Kidde Long-Life sealed battery smoke alarm, $20; walmart.com
For the best protection, opt for separate carbon monoxide alarms instead of combination smoke/CO detectors. Place one on every level of the home and outside each bedroom or sleeping area so that occupants will wake up if it goes off at night. Plug-in versions with battery backups are convenient and discreet. First Alert plug-in carbon monoxide detector, $33; amazon.com
Basement, laundry, and mechanical room
A sump pump alarm has a sensor wire and probe that detect rapidly rising water levels, tipping you off to a potential flood. Reliance Controls sump pump alarm, $15; homedepot.com
An automatic shutoff valve for your water heater cuts off the supply to the device as soon as it senses a leak of any kind. FloodStop auto shutoff valve for water heaters, $115; safehomeproducts.com
If you forget to turn off the water supply to your washing machine when you're finished sudsing your duds, then this is the gizmo for you: a switch that automatically opens the valve as soon as you turn the machine on, and then closes it when the rinse cycle is over. Watts IntelliFlow automatic washing machine shutoff valve, about $200; amazon.com
Place sturdy escape ladders in each bedroom near a window. Practice setting them up in case you have to do it quickly. First Alert three-story fire-escape ladder, $72; target.com
Must-have tools for your emergency kit
Collect all your gear in a waterproof plastic tub and stow it in an easy-to-access spot in your house.
1. Duct tape. Use it for on-the-fly repairs and temporary fixes. $3.50 per roll at home stores
2. Blanket. Mylar is warm and lightweight, and folds up small. $3.50; grainger.com
3. Multitool. Get one with a pair of pliers and a can opener. $55; leatherman.com
4. Radio/phone charger. A hand crank will allow you to juice up the battery. $20; amazon.com
5. Work gloves. Leather grips protect your mitts during poststorm cleanup. $48; ironclad.com
6. Nylon rope. Use it to secure heavy outdoor furniture or tie down a flapping door.$30 per 100 feet at home stores
7. Lantern. A battery-operated model is safer than candles. $40; coleman.com
And add these multitaskers:
8. Fishing line. Use it wherever rope is too thick to get the job done.
9. Vinyl tablecloth. Lay it down to create a clean zone in any area.
10. Baby wipes. They'll remove grime from your hands and practically any surface.
Make sure to include first-aid supplies, three days' worth of bottled water and nonperishable food, and a list of important phone numbers.
Source: CNNMoney http://tinyurl.com/7a5jyok
Tuesday, January 17 2012
Disaster Resistant Community(DRC) is hosting the Evansville Earthquake Hazards Maps presentation.
I am inviting you to attendthe upcoming first public look at the new earthquake hazards maps of the Evansville-Henderson metro area. Please pass this invitation on to those you know who will be interested.
On Tuesday, February 7,from 5:00 pm - 7:00 pm, new earth quake hazards maps of the Evansville area will be unveiled to the public. The event will take place at the SouthernIndiana Career & Technology Center, located at 1901 Lynch Road in Evansville, Ind. The programis Free and open to the public.
There will be a special appearance by “Eliza Bryan”, who lived in New Madrid from 1780 until 1866. She survived the 1811–1812 New Madridearthquakes and left detailed accounts of her experiences. Eliza Bryan will share her recollections ofthe Mississippi River running backwards and upheavals of the earth’ssurface during those earthquakes. Phyllis Steckel, an earthquake geologist from Washington, Mo., will portray Eliza Bryan.
The Evansville AreaEarthquake Hazards Mapping Project is funded by the U.S. Geological Survey’sNational Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program. The Southwest Indiana Disaster Resistant Community Corporation; Purdue University; the Center for Earthquake Research and Information at the University of Memphis; the U.S. Geological Survey; and the state geologic surveys of Indiana and Kentucky are project leaders. The Central U.S. Earthquake Consortium and CUSEC State Geologists are also involved.
To register go to: firstname.lastname@example.org - please note this is for the "evening presentation" and list the names ofthose who will be attending.
Wednesday, November 09 2011
In less than three minutes, a house fire can become uncontrollable. In 1975, house fires tended to not become uncontrollable until an average of 17 minutes, according to a report by the National Institutes of Standards and Technology.
Despite better smoke alarms, home fires are spreading faster nowadays, studies show, so why are blazes spreading quicker?
Certain home furnishings may be one of the biggest culprits of home fires burning faster, some fire experts say. For example, upholstered furniture contains flammable polyurethane foam, which can potentially increase fire hazards. Also, fire experts note in an AOL Real Estate article, homes nowadays are constructed with more open floor plans and building materials, such as wallboard, that can contribute to faster spreading fires too.
Source: “Hot Stat: Today’s Homes Burn Faster Than Ever,” AOL Real Estate News (Nov. 7, 2011)
Friday, September 30 2011
Posted by: Craig Fugate, Administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency & Julius Genachowski, Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission
Ask anyone who has lived through a significant disaster what that experience was like and – without a doubt – one of the things some people are likely to recall is how difficult it was to communicate from their mobile phones with friends, family and emergency services like 911 in the immediate aftermath.
Many of us were reminded of this last month, when both a 5.8 magnitude earthquake and Hurricane Irene struck parts of the East Coast. People immediately reached for their phones to call loved ones or 911. Unfortunately, in some cases, loss of power made communication difficult.
The FCC and FEMA are doing everything we can to empower the public to be prepared for all emergencies (you can visit www.Ready.gov or www.Listo.gov to learn more). But one of the lessons learned from that August earthquake was that we can do more to educate the public about the most effective ways to communicate before, during and after a disaster.
Today, we are pleased to release a set of new, easy-to-follow tips to help all Americans prepare their homes and mobile phones for a disaster. These tips are practical things everyone can do to better preserve the ability to communicate effectively during – and immediately after – a disaster.
While we don’t have control over when or where the next disaster will strike, we do have control over what we do to prepare. Check out these tips and please, take one more step and share it with your networks. Use Twitter, Facebook, email or a good old-fashioned phone call to help us spread the word – and help more Americans get ready before the next disaster strikes.
And remember, if you have a question about your particular mobile phone device, contact your wireless provider or equipment manufacturer.
Before a Disaster: How to Prepare Your Home and Mobile Device
During and After a Disaster: How to Reach Friends, Loved Ones & Emergency Services