September is National Preparedness Month, a time for families to take these steps to be better prepared for any emergency, large or small.
Build a kit with enough supplies to last you at least three days. Include:
Water and food. Include can openers!
Pet food and supplies.
Money and important documents.
Talk with your family and friends about what you will do in different emergencies and practice different scenarios.
Make an emergency plan with your family.
Insurance is your first line of defense. Check your insurance coverage.
Plan financially for the possibility of disaster.
Learn safety skills such as how to turn off utilities like natural gas, water, and electricity in your home; how to use a fire extinguisher; and how to perform CPR and first aid.
3. Stay Informed
It’s important to stay informed about what might happen and know what types of emergencies are likely to affect your region.
Sign up for the Eau Claire emergency notification system. This system that helps first responders, police and fire locate and help you in an emergency. Sign up at tinyurl.com/EauClaire911.
Stay connected to social media. Follow Eau Claire County Emergency Management and the Eau Claire City-County Health Department on Facebook and Twitter. Search #prepareauclaire for tips.
Have a weather radio. If you live in rural areas with intermittent cell service have a weather radio that will advise you of emergencies in these areas.
4. Get Involved
Be a part of something bigger and volunteer with the Eau Claire County Medical Reserve Corps (ECC-MRC). The ECC-MRC is a group of non-medical and medical volunteers who have special training to help respond during an incident.
Learn more at tinyurl.com/ECC-MRC or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Natasha Bentz is the emergency preparedness specialist at the Eau Claire City-County Health Department. She served six years active duty in the U.S. Marine Corps and is currently a reservist in the aviation community. In her spare time she enjoys running and biking the beautiful trails of Eau Claire.