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2014-08-14

During hurricane season, be ready & stay ready

By City Marshal James "Charlie" Hicks

By City Marshal James "Charlie" Hicks
Special to the Courier

Since hurricane season is now in full swing, all citizens are advised to put together an emergency-disaster preparedness kit. Now is the time to collect together that can have an impact on how emergencies are handled.
Consider these important tips:
• Discuss the emergencies and disasters most likely to effect you and your family. Hazards in this area include fires, severe weather and storms, flooding and hazardous materials threats that might lead to evacuations.
• Train all family members. Take first aid classes. Learn to use a fire extinguisher and how to shut off utilities. Do not take the chance that the only person who knows first aid or how to turn off natural gas will be at home when needed.
• Assemble all emergency-disaster supplies into a personal 72-hour emergency preparedness kit. An ice chest, box, or tub with rollers can be used to store supplies. The kit should include non-perishable food, water, clothing, medications, a first-aid kit and flashlights with extra batteries.
Each family or individual's kit should be customized to meet specific needs, such as medications and infant formula if needed. It should also be customized to include important family records and documents. Make sure each family member knows the location of the kit - and don't forget to prepare for your pets.
• Have phone numbers for both in- and out-of-state emergency contact names and numbers. Place copies near the phone and in the kit.
• Be ready and stay steady by reviewing your emergency-disaster preparedness plan with your family. Identify what new training, equipment or supplies you may need.