The need for emergency preparedness is becoming more and more apparent every day. Since Hurricane Katrina made it so obvious that the need to be prepared is a very real one, we’ve had several more examples of situations where basic preparations would have saved thousands of people unnecessary hardship and some even death.
Hurricane Irene made a track up the East Coast causing several million people from North Carolina to Maine, and every state along the coast in between to lose power for a week or more before it could be restored. Tropical Storm Lee followed right behind a few days later causing power outages, in Alabama and Mississippi with flooding and several thousand people had to evacuate the lower lying areas. Last month, the power to Southern California, parts of Arizona, and Mexico was knocked out by a utility worker performing maintenance work in Yuma, Arizona.
The people affected by these things could have saved themselves a lot of trouble by having an emergency preparedness plan and a few emergency essentials stored away.
On almost a weekly basis something is happening somewhere that puts your way of life in jeopardy.
Natural disasters, “flash mobs” and gang violence in our cities, power outages, and brown outs due to increased demand and a collapsing infra-structure that can’t keep up with the demand. These are just some of the things we’ve had to deal with, and as time goes on there will be more and more.
Things will not get any better soon. Due to the economy and recent budget cuts, the governmental agencies that are entrusted with public safety just do not have the manpower or supplies to help all the people affected by disasters. You can expect to be on your own for the first 72 hours. FEMA recommends that all households should have at least a 2 week supply of food and water, and any medications needed. Why do you think they would make such a recommendation? It is because they realize that it will take them time to get organized, mobilize and actually get on the ground in an area where their services are needed.
Law Enforcement personnel are already stretched thin and just barely have the manpower to deal with things in normal times, much less during a disaster. You can not depend on Law Enforcement for the security of your family during a crisis. You will have to provide your own help and your own security.
You need to have an emergency preparedness plan for your home and family. With the entire family working as a cohesive group, everyone will know what is expected of them and will be able to face the situation with confidence and resolve. This will make it easier to get the things that need to be done accomplished in an orderly way. Everyone having their own responsibilities in a crisis will also help prevent panic and anxiety which would make the crises even harder to deal with.
Most people have a tendency to think “that will never happen to me”, or “that couldn’t happen in my neighborhood”, but it does happen to people just like you and in neighborhoods just like yours. That is what most of the people in New Orleans and on the East Coast thought, and it happened to them just the same. No matter who you are or where you live, you are no more immune to being caught up in a crises than these people were.
Emergency preparedness is for everyone. Do not let your family be caught up in a crisis for which you are unprepared. Do not put it off until the crisis occurs. Once a crisis occurs, it’s too late. Get prepared now. You can get some great ideas about how to prepare and learn what you need to know by getting;