The power of preparation

Posted on Sep 05 2022 in Heartland REMC
Emergency kit

With severe weather events occurring more often, it makes sense to be prepared. During a prolonged power outage or other emergency, this means having enough food, water and supplies to last at least a few days. 

In honor of National Preparedness Month in September, Heartland REMC reminds members of our community about the power of preparation. Even at a modest level, preparation can help reduce stress, lessen anxiety and minimize the impact of an emergency event. 

We recommend starting with the basics. 

Guidelines from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA):

  • Assemble a grab-and-go disaster kit. Include items like nonperishable food, water (one gallon per person, per day), diapers, batteries, flashlights, prescription medications, first-aid kit, battery-powered radio and phone chargers.
  • Develop a plan for communicating with family and friends (e.g., via text, social media, a third party, etc.).
  • Have some extra cash available. During a power outage, electronic card readers and cash machines may not work.
  • Store important documents (birth certificates, property deed, etc.) in safe place away from home (e.g., a bank safe deposit box).
  • Keep neighbors and coworkers apprised of your emergency plans.
  • Fill your car with gas.
  • Organize your supplies together in an easily accessible location that family members know about.

Caring for vulnerable family members 

If you have older family members or those with special needs, make sure they have enough medication and supplies for a few days. If they don’t live with you, arrange for a neighbor to check in on them. If a severe weather event is expected, consider having your relative stay with you if possible. Otherwise, call them daily. If you have an infant or young children, make certain that you have ample formula, diapers, medication and other supplies on hand. 

Keeping four-legged family members safe

  • Bring pets indoors at the first sign of a storm or other emergency. Pets can become disoriented and frightened during severe weather and may wander off during an emergency.
  • Microchip your pet and ensure the contact information is up to date.
  • Store pet medical records on a USB drive or in an easy-to-remember location.
  • Create an emergency kit for pets. Include shelf-safe food, bottled water, medications and other supplies.

At Heartland REMC, we care about your safety. Planning for an emergency situation today can give you more confidence to deal with severe weather and potential outages in the future.