September is National Preparedness Month. Are You Prepared?

This September, National Preparedness Month (NPM) will focus on planning, with an overarching theme “Disasters Don’t Plan Ahead.  You Can.” We should all take action to prepare!  We are all able to help first responders in our community by training how to respond during an emergency and what to do when disaster strikes – where we live, work and visit.  The goal of NPM is to increase the overall number of individuals, families and communities that engage in preparedness actions.  Tornadoes in the midwest, flooding down south, hurricanes in the east and wildfires and earthquakes out west, it seems no one is immune. After the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, September has been recognized as National Preparedness Month to serve as a reminder that you must take action to prepare, now and throughout the year, for the types of emergencies that could affect you where you live, work, and also where you visit. It is recommended that you prepare and plan in the event you must go for three days without electricity, water service, access to a supermarket, or local services for several days.

Just follow these four steps:

  • Stay Informed: Information is available at to learn what to do before, during, and after an emergency.
  • Make a Plan: Discuss, agree on, and document an emergency plan with those in your care. For sample plans, see
    • Work together with neighbors, colleagues, and others to build community resilience. Sign up for alerts and warnings in your area. Learn your evacuation zone and have an evacuation plan. Check your insurance coverage and review the Document and Insure Property guide. Plan financially for the possibility of a disaster.
  • Build a Kit: Keep enough emergency supplies — water, nonperishable food, first aid, prescriptions, flashlight, and battery-powered radio on hand — for you and those in your care.
  • Get Involved: There are many ways to get involved especially before a disaster occurs.

10 essential items for your emergency stockpile

  1. Three-day supply of water, with one gallon of water per person per day
  2. Three-day supply of nonperishable food
  3. Manual can opener
  4. First-aid kit
  5. Battery operated radio
  6. Flashlights and lanterns
  7. Batteries
  8. Whistle to signal for help
  9. Prescription medications
  10. Battery-operated or solar cellphone charger