05 September, 2009


National Preparedness Month is sponsored annually in September by the US Department
of Homeland Security’s “Ready” campaign. It is designed to encourage individuals across the nation to take steps to increase their preparedness, including making a family emergency plan,making an emergency supply kit, and being informed about the different emergencies that may affect them. The District of Columbia is among more than 1,200 national, regional, state and local businesses and organizations that have joined the National Preparedness Month Coalition and pledged to sponsor events and activities to promote preparedness during the 2009 National Preparedness Month observance.

The MPD offers a number of recommendations on how people can prepare for a possible
emergency situation. The first thing to consider are the basic necessities for survival: fresh water,food, clean air and warmth. Households should create an emergency supply kit that provides these necessities for every person (and pet) who lives there. Families should also create a plan and review it as a group so everyone knows where to go, who to contact, and how to reach each other in the event of an emergency. In addition to the recommendations offered by the MPD, the DC Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management (HSEMA)offers a number of preparedness guides and other emergency planning tools for reference.

Whether you plan to shelter in place or evacuate, which clearly depends on the emergency circumstances, it’s important to monitor the news (on TV, the radio, or the internet) for information and official instructions. If you live in the District of Columbia, you may want to register with Alert DC to receive regular emergency alerts via email or text.

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