City Hall Blog (archived)

Preparing for disaster: how to do your part


The Department of Homeland Security designates each September as National Preparedness Month. So far, 2013 has been a busy year for severe weather, including wind storms and several instances of flooding. Regardless of the disaster or time of year, now is the time to take simple steps to prepare for emergencies in your home, community and business.  Concord Emergency Management encourages all our community to be prepared for when, not if, the next emergency occurs. Preparedness is everyone’s responsibility, so let’s all do our part.
10 Ways to Prepare for Disaster
  1. Identify your risk - What are the hazards where you live or work? Find out what natural or human caused disasters pose a risk for you. Do you live near a flood plain, an earthquake fault, or in a high fire danger area? Are you prepared for an unexpected human-made disaster that can strike any time? Does your neighborhood or community have a disaster plan?
  2. Create a family disaster plan - Your family needs a plan that tells everyone where to meet if you have to evacuate; who you’ve identified as an out-of-state “family contact;” and how to get emergency information in your community. Talk to your kids about what the risks are and what your family will do if disaster strikes. Don’t forget your pets.
  3. Practice your disaster plan - After you have sat down with your family and written your plan — practice it. Start by having family members meet at a designated spot outside your home — like you would after a fire or after the shaking stops. Know how to respond in the event of any disaster — whether to stay indoors or evacuate your neighborhood by car. For help call our emergency management office at 704-920-5528.
  4. Make a disaster supply kit - If you are stranded in your car, an emergency occurs at work, or have to be self-sufficient at home until help arrives, you need to have a disaster kit with you.
  5. Prepare your children - Talk to your kids about what the risks are and what your family will do if disaster strikes.
  6. Don't forget those with special needs - Infants, seniors, and those with special needs must not be forgotten. Make sure that supplies for your infant are in your kit and that you have items such as medications, oxygen tanks, or other medical supplies seniors or those with special needs may require.
  7. Eliminate hazards in your home and workplace - You must secure the contents of your home or office to reduce hazards, especially during a tornado or from an explosion.
  8. Understand post-9/11 Risks - Disaster preparedness must now account for man-made disasters as well as natural ones. Knowing what to do during an emergency is an important part of being prepared and may make all the difference when seconds count.
  9. Learn CPR and First Aid - Contact your local chapter of the American Red Cross today and get trained on basic first aid and CPR. Your training could save the life of a loved one or neighbor following a disaster.
  10. Get involved - Donate blood, join a local Community Emergency Response Team (CERT), educate your neighbor, or volunteer with your local American Red Cross.