Improve Your Readiness
The "Formidable Footprint" LinkedIn Group for all the exercise participants, Exercise Supporters, Exercise Partners and anyone else interested in the "Formidable Footprint" series of online exercises created by the Disaster Resistant Communities Group, The Stoneybrook Group and Depiction. Exercises are HSEEP designed, 3 hours in length and designed for community & neighborhood groups to assess the capability of neighborhood residents to work together to prepare for, respond to and recover from a variety of natural disasters which can affect the lives of neighborhood residents. This Group will provide a platform for everyone to network, discuss relevant topics and provide feedback on the exercise series. We hope you'll join your "Formidable Footprint" colleagues and find the network interaction mutually beneficial.
Formidable Footprint website: www.formidablefootprint.org
Be Aware Of Your Local Government's Emergency Or Disaster Plan
One of the important first steps in preparedness is to familiarize yourself with your local community’s emergency or disaster plan. The following link takes you to the Escambia County Department of Public Safety. There you will find important local information resources and contact information for public officials: www.bereadyescambia.com
Know How To Find The Emergency Broadcast Channel On The Radio
Emergency Alert System (EAS)
The Emergency Alert System (EAS) is a national public warning system that requires broadcasters, cable television systems, wireless cable systems, satellite digital audio radio service (SDARS) providers and, effective May 2007, direct broadcast satellite (DBS) service providers to provide the communications capability to the President to address the American public during a national emergency. The system may also be used by state and local authorities to deliver important emergency information such as AMBER alerts and weather information targeted to a specific area.
In Escambia County the following stations are designated as participants in the EAS system:
- WYCL FM 107.3
- WRRX FM 106.1
- WXBM FM 102.7
- WTKX FM 101.5
- WJLQ FM 100.7
- WYCT FM 98.7
- WTKE FM 98.1
- WGCX FM 95.7
- WMEZ FM 94.1
- WEGS FM 91.7
- WPCS FM 89.5
- WUWF FM 88.1
- WVTJ AM 610
- WPNN AM 790
- WRNE AM 980
- WNVY AM 1090
- WDWR AM 1230
- WEBY AM 1330
- WCOA AM 1370
- WBSR AM 1450
- WNRP AM 1620
Recently, many websites have been created to help spread the message and encourage preparation and preparedness. Whether you are looking for specific information about what to do in your area, or something more broad like what should be in a "Go" kit, these sites are good places to start:
Prepare A Disaster Supply Kit
After a disaster, local officials and relief workers will be on the scene, but they cannot reach everyone immediately. You could get help in hours, or it may take days. Would your family be prepared to cope with the emergency until help arrives? The following will link you to an American Red Cross document that will aid greatly in family disaster preparedness: http://www.redcross.org/images/pdfs/preparedness/A4600.pdf
Prepare A“Go” Kit
Since emergencies can strike at any time, it’s a good idea to have some supplies that are packed in an easily-moveable, waterproof container that can take with you.
Your "Go" kit should include some food and water to get you from emergency to safety as well as some of the comforts from home, like a toothbrush. Customize your “Go” kit based on your own personal needs, but every good “Go” kit should include:
- battery powered flashlight
- battery powered radio
- work gloves
- plastic work goggles
- dust mask
- rain poncho
- first-aid kit.
Your family may not be together when disaster strikes, so you must plan in advance. Who is the point of contact? How will you communicate? These are just a few of the important questions that must be addressed in your plan. Creating a plan is surprisingly easy, thanks to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Ready campaign. There is even a downloadable Family Emergency Plan. It asks the questions... you answer them... and there is your plan! The American Red Cross also offers tips on creating a plan.
Establish A Specific Meeting Place
Having a predetermined meeting place away from your home will save time and minimize confusion if your home is affected or your neighborhood is evacuated. Have you decided on a meeting place? Does everyone in your family know where it is?
You should also be aware of the Next Of Kin Registry (NOKR) -- a free tool for daily emergencies and national disasters. NOKR is an emergency contact system to help if you or a family member is missing, injured or deceased. NOKR provides the public a free proactive service to store emergency contacts, next of kin and vital medical information that would be critical to emergency response agencies.
Practice What To Do In An Emergency
The old saying is true: Practice makes perfect. And although no one can ever be perfectly prepared... practicing or performing emergency drills is very important. Most schools require all students to participate in fire drills...every family should have emergency drills as well. You can even make them an enjoyable family activity.
Volunteering before, during and/or after an emergency provides people with important skills and knowledge. It helps to make a prepared individual and a prepared community even better able to respond.
The American Red Cross should be your first stop when looking for local emergency preparedness opportunities. And since we all have a role in hometown security, Citizen Corps is a great way for individuals to embrace the personal responsibility to be prepared; to get training in first aid and emergency skills; and to volunteer to support local emergency responders, disaster relief, and community safety.
Stay Current On First Aid Skills (Training within the past 5 years)
Being trained in first aid gives you the confidence to respond in an emergency situation with skills that can save a life. If you haven’t taken a first aid class in the past five years, it’s time to do it! From CPR, first aid and automated external defibrillator (AED) training to injury prevention courses, blood borne pathogens training and community disaster education, you can learn from the most trusted name in safety training for nearly a century - the American Red Cross. Red Cross training offers complete, flexible programs that help you, your family and your community stay prepared for virtually any life-threatening situation. Contact the American Red Cross of Northwest Florida for more information.
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