Editorial: Emergency Preparation

Natural disasters are happening every day all across the world. You can’t stop it, but you can prepare yourself in case of an emergency. Any emergency. Whether it’s an earthquake, fire, or even a windstorm. 

Being ready means being equipped with the proper supplies you may need in the event of an emergency or disaster. Keep your supplies in an easy-to-carry emergency preparedness kit that you can use at home or take with you in case you must evacuate.

According to ready.gov, a “basic emergency supply kit should include the following recommended items: Water — one gallon of water per person per day for at least three days, for drinking and sanitation. Food — at least a three-day supply of nonperishable food. Battery-powered or hand-crank radio and a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio with tone alert.”

“Over the last five years, weather-related deaths are up 41% from 2014, while the number of weather events has increased 5% and injuries have decreased by 40%. In 2018, 62,339 weather events resulted in 782 deaths and 1,797 injuries,” according to injuryfacts.nsc.org.

In California alone, between 2014 and 2018, there have been 7,128 weather events that caused 790 injuries and have a death toll of 293. Heat waves, winter weather, and wildfires were responsible for the most deaths during 2018. 

“The most deadly weather events in the United States over the past five years include Hurricane Irma, wildfires in California, and Hurricane Harvey,” according to injuryfacts.nsc.org.

According to the National Safety Council (NSC), “an unforeseen emergency can strike at any given moment at home or work.” That’s why it’s imperative to have employees that are aware of how to respond quickly and effectively.

Keep a kit in a designated place and have it ready in case you have to leave home quickly. Make sure all members of the family know where the kit is kept and how to handle all items inside.

Be prepared to take shelter at work for at least 24 hours. Work kits should include food, water, necessities like medicines, walking shoes, and be stored in a “grab and go” bag. In case you are stranded, keep a kit of emergency supplies in your car.

You do not know where you will be when an emergency happens, prepare supplies for home, work, and your vehicles.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) suggests that you plan for before, during, and after an emergency. Planning won’t stop the inevitable, But it will at least keep you prepared.

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