Planning Ahead

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Property Readiness

  • Inspect your property for any potential problems that will be amplified during an emergency, such as missing roof tiles, broken doors, leaking windows, or propane tanks.

Financial Readiness

  • Inventory valuables in your home, recording model numbers of major items.
  • Photograph and document all valuables in your home.
  • Put original insurance policies in a safe place.
  • Have copies of policies available to take with you.
  • Review policies to assure coverage is adequate.
  • Make a list of bank account and credit card numbers - put in a secure place.
  • Make copies of social security cards and keep in a secure place.

Family Readiness

  • Sometimes local phone service is disrupted, but outside phone service is still available.  Make arrangements with family members to have an outside phone number, such as a relative in another area or state that family members can call to relay messages.
  • Establish evacuation routes out of your house, neighborhood, city and state.
  • Make copies of important documents, such as vehicle registrations, insurance paperwork, birth certificates, marriage licenses, death certificates, passports and keep them readily available in one location or folder, in case you have to leave quickly.
  • Keep some cash on hand and an extra book of checking account checks.  Keep in mind that banks and ATMs may not be available in an emergency.
  • Proof of residency (e.g., electric bill, property tax bill) is also important, especially if an area is evacuated and you need to return to your home to retrieve anything.
  • Be familiar with community warning signals and what to do when you hear them.  Work with your neighbors to plan how to survive in case of disaster until help arrives.  Know your neighbors special skills (doctor, nurse) and special needs (disabled, elderly) and consider how to help them.
  • Program ICE contact names and numbers into your phones, cell phones, or other communication .ces and place an ICE sticker on phones and/or.ces so first responders know your emergency contact information is stored there.
  • If you are assigned to work during weather or other related emergencies, consider bringing the following items to work:  Personal preparedness kit, air mattress or other items to improve your comfort and several changes of clothing for the jobs you may be assigned.

Pet Readiness

  • Keep copies of pet licenses, pet vaccination records and list of pet medications available to take with you.  Have a photo of your pet.
  • Plan how to take care of your pets in the vent of evacuation; animals may not be allowed inside emergency shelters.