OSWEGO, NY – As September marks the 11th anniversary of National Preparedness Month, the Oswego County Health Department reminds individuals and families to prepare for natural and man-made disasters.
“The record flooding in 2011, the extreme wildfire season this year, and the potential for severe winter weather reminds us that we need to be prepared for all types of disasters,” said Oswego County Public Health Director Jiancheng Huang.
The three main steps in disaster preparedness include: assembling an emergency kit, making a preparedness plan, and being informed.
An emergency kit should include the following supplies:
Non-perishable food and water. Plan to have one gallon of water per person per day for at least three days. This will be used for drinking and sanitation.
First aid supplies
A battery-powered or hand-crank radio. Having a weather radio will help you stay informed about what might happen next during an emergency.
A flashlight with extra batteries
As severe winter weather is the main hazard in Oswego County, it is also important to have an emergency supply kit in your vehicle in the event that you are stranded in bad weather.
When creating your emergency plan, consider how family members will contact each other, escape routes from home, what to do during a power outage, and how you will care for your pets, whether you are evacuating or sheltering-in-place.
Being informed means knowing what hazards are likely to occur where you live, where you are traveling to, and how to respond to such emergencies.
You can learn more about different hazards at www.ready.gov or www.cdc.gov
Modern technology can help families communicate during and after an emergency and back up important family documents.
“We’ve seen in recent disasters that text messaging and internet services will often still work when traditional phone service has been interrupted. Learning how to use this technology can really make a difference in how a family recovers from an emergency,” said Huang.
For more information and tools to help your family get ready, call the Oswego County Health Department at 349-3547 or visit www.oswegocounty.com/ready