WASHINGTON –Today, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is encouraging individuals, families, workplaces, schools, and organizations across the nation to take part in National PrepareAthon! Day on September 30th, 2015. Extreme weather is occurring more often across the United States, which is increasing the costs of natural disasters. According to a recent survey conducted by FEMA, fewer than half of Americans have discussed and developed an emergency plan with their household.
As part of National Preparedness Month and National PrepareAthon! Day, FEMA is encouraging everyone to develop and practice their family emergency plan to prepare for disasters that are known threats in their communities.
“The first step in preparing yourself and your family is learning the type of disasters that can happen where you live,” said FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate. “Your family may not be together when disaster strikes. Developing an emergency communication plan doesn’t cost a thing, and the time you’ve invested beforehand will make it easier for your family to reconnect.”
National PrepareAthon! Day is part of America’s PrepareAthon!, a nationwide grassroots campaign for action to increase community preparedness and resilience through hazard-specific group discussions, drills, and exercises. The campaign offers easy-to-implement preparedness guides, checklists, and resources to help individuals, organizations, and communities prepare for the types of disasters that are relevant to their area. People can take these simple steps to increase their preparedness:
- Create a family emergency communication plan. Visit ready.gov/prepare and download Be Smart. Take Part: Create Your Family Emergency Communication Plan. Collect the information you need, decide on the places you will meet in case of an emergency, share the information with your family, and practice your plan.
- Sign up for local text alerts and warnings and download weather apps. Stay aware of worsening weather conditions. Visit ready.gov/prepare and download Be Smart: Know Your Alerts and Warnings to learn how sign up for local alerts and weather apps that are relevant for hazards that affect your area.
- Gather important documents and keep them in a safe place. Have all of your personal, medical, and legal papers in one place, so you can evacuate without worrying about gathering your family’s critical documents at the last minute. Visit ready.gov/prepare and download Be Smart: Protect Your Critical Documents and Valuables for a helpful checklist.
- Create an emergency supply kit. Be prepared for bad weather by creating an emergency supply kit for each member of your family. Visit ready.gov/build-a-kit for more ideas of what to include in your kit.
Visit the America’s PrepareAthon! website, ready.gov/prepare for more information, to sign up, and to register your participation.