During times of disaster, the world as you know it may literally be falling apart. A simple and realistic plan can help bring some order to the chaos and make the difference in saving lives and property.
Understand the various emergencies that have historically affected or potentially could affect the local area of Santa Clara County: terrorism, earthquakes, power outages, hazardous materials, fires, floods/storms, extreme heat/drought, tornados, and lightning.
Discuss with your household the importance of being prepared for the next emergency. Enlist their commitment and contributions.
Know where to call for an emergency. Post these numbers near all your telephones:
Familiarize yourself with local community warning signals and actions you should take.
Keep a list of important information of household members readily available:
Date of Birth
Social Security Number
Medical Information (medication, allergies, specialist doctors, equipment or supplies)
Work, school, and other addresses/telephone numbers
Maintain some basic emergency supplies and keep them readily available.
FIRE PREVENTION AND SAFETY
Learn what you can do to prevent fires and other tragic accidents through fire prevention and safety.
Install smoke detectors on each level of your home, especially near bedrooms.
Get training from the fire department on how to use fire extinguishers (A-B-C type) and keep it readily available.
Determine the following evacuation routes:
Two ways out of each room (keep clear).
Best routes out of the home (keep clear).
Best routes out of the neighborhood.
Designate two places for the family to meet and account for everyone.
Establish an out-of-state family contact to coordinate information. (After an emergency, it is usually easier to call long-distance.) Everyone should know the contact’s phone number and email address. For school-aged children, write the number in their binder or backpack.
Learn simple methods of reducing home hazards.
FIRST AID / CPR
Take a Red Cross first aid and CPR class.
Learn how to turn off all the utilities (water, gas, and electricity) at the main connections and when or who should turn them back on.
Verify that you have adequate insurance coverage (life, disability, health, home, auto, and other property).
Ensure you have copies of important documents in an alternate location (family, friend, safety deposit box, etc…)
Consider any special needs of your household for the successful execution of this plan (non-English-speaking people, children, elderly, disabled, medically fragile, animals, etc…).
Learn simple ideas of putting it into practice until everyone knows the plan and feels confident with it.
Think about actually responding to emergencies.
Once you and your family have a general emergency plan in place, you can take additional steps to be better prepared for the specific emergencies that affect Santa Clara County (terrorism, earthquakes, power outages, hazardous materials, fires, floods/storms, extreme heat/drought, tornados, and lightning).
OTHER EMERGENCY PLANS
Familiarize yourself with the emergency plans of the places your family spends time (school, business, etc.).
Learn about volunteering and training opportunities with your local community on how you can better prepare for and respond to the next emergency as a team and neighborhood asset. Understand the skills (medical, technical, etc.) and special needs (non-English-speaking people, children, elderly, disabled, medically fragile, animals, etc.) of your neighbors.
(Attributions: American Red Cross)
For More Information Please Contact:
Office of Emergency Services
55 W. Younger Avenue
San Jose, CA 95110