For most people in Washtenaw County, September marks the end of the summer and the beginning of football season, but it’s also the beginning of National Preparedness Month. National Preparedness Month is sponsored by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and is designed to raise awareness and encourage Americans to take steps to prepare for emergencies in their homes, schools, organizations, businesses, and places of worship. National Preparedness Month serves as a reminder to help Americans understand what it truly means to be ready. At Ann Arbor Arms, we’re always helping people in the community plan ahead and prepare for unexpected situations.
A crisis can occur at any time without warning and can change your life forever. Recent events such as Hurricane Harvey and the floods that have followed, are a harsh reminder that we can be dramatically impacted by a disaster at any time. At Ann Arbor Arms, we are committed to raising awareness on the importance of preparation and we help customers customize their own preparedness plan. In the spirit of this year’s theme “Disasters Don’t Plan Ahead. You Can”, we would like to share a checklist to help your family prepare for a disaster or emergency.
- Be informed – Know what disasters could affect us in Washtenaw County. Is our area prone to tornados or flooding? Now is the time to find out.
- Sign up for alerts and warnings in our area. Washtenaw County Sheriff’s Office is now using an online service, called Nixle, to communicate with citizens.Click here to learn more.
- Plan ahead – Make a Plan for Yourself, Family and Friends Visit ready.gov to Make an Emergency Plan for your family. Make sure to communicate your plan with family members. Everyone in the family should be aware of all emergency plans, procedures and strategies.
- Make digital copies of important documents and save them on the cloud or a secure cell phone app in case disaster strikes.
- Check your insurance coverage and review the Document and Insure Property guide. Make sure you know what your insurance policy covers before an emergency: fema.gov/national-flood-insurance-program. Flood insurance policies have a 30-day waiting period before they go into effect. Plan now for floods www.floodsmart.gov.
- Plan financially for the possibility of disaster – Maintain emergency savings for use in case of an emergency. Financial prep tip: flood-proof important documents by putting them in plastic bags to protect against water damage. Keep some cash on hand in case of emergencies.
- If you don’t know where the shut-off valves for water/gas/electricity are, call your utility company and ask someone to show you. Knowing how to shut off utilities like gas, water, & electricity is key after a disaster. Keep contact info for your utility companies on hand in case you have to report an emergency like a gas leak.
- Build and Practice Your Plans. Having a plan and executing it are key when time is limited. Don’t forget to practice evacuating in the car with your animals, so they’re more comfortable if you need to evacuate in an emergency. For more info: ready.gov/safety-skills.
- Plan to Help Your Neighbors and Community – Almost half of Americans expect to rely on their neighbors after a disaster. Plan today: ready.gov/volunteer .
- Put together a GoKit and a Survival Kit. Make sure your kit includes a supply of Emergency Food (such as Wise Freeze Dried Foods) & water purification tablets. Other things to think about are important documents to have in your emergency kit and include a one-week supply of medications. Visit Ann Arbor Arms for all of your preparedness products needs.
- Download the FEMA app for disaster resources, weather alerts, and safety tips. Throughout National Preparedness Month, FEMA encourages everyone to install and become more familiar with the FEMA App. The App allows users to receive weather alerts for up to 5 different areas, offers an emergency preparedness checklist, and provides safety tips for numerous emergency situations. The App also lists open shelters and gives users the ability to upload disaster photos from roads, parks and other public areas to help emergency managers. Sign up for monthly preparedness text messages: Text PREPARE to 43362 (4FEMA) to receive monthly preparedness tips. (msg/data rates apply)
- Beware of frauds & scams when seeking disaster assistance. Federal/state workers never ask for/accept money and always carry IDs.
We should all take action to prepare! “Disasters don’t plan ahead. You can.” Make an emergency plan today. At Ann Arbor Arms, we take preparation seriously and we are here to help members of the community feel confident that they are prepared, not only for natural disasters, but also for first aid emergencies, survival situations, extreme adventure settings, and any other times when self-sufficiency is called for. Some product that we offer are: first aid kits, food storage, water purification, emergency response tools, and survival kits!
Joy Meadows, Member Relations
Ann Arbor Arms │ 45 Metty Drive │ Ann Arbor, MI 48103
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