Personal and Household Preparedness
There are many activities that individuals and households can undertake to reduce their vulnerability to disasters. First and foremost, residents can endeavor to educate themselves regarding their exposure to hazards and can plan to reduce or eliminate the potential for loss. Information regarding Juneau-area hazards can be found on this Web site.
The American Red Cross is an excellent source for information on household preparedness. Their Web can help you and your family create a disaster plan as well as provide you with more information on disasters themselves, Red Cross services, and general health and safety information.
Juneau residents can further reduce their vulnerability to local hazards by making sure that they are prepared for an event that cuts off power, phone, and transportation for several days. Sometimes the simplest steps can make a big difference during a crisis. The following suggestions may help you begin:
- Work with your family to create a disaster plan. Decide how you will react, where family members should meet, and what items you might need.
- Assemble a home disaster kit with such items as flashlights, batteries, canned food, blankets, and other items you might need in a disaster.
- Learn to shut off power, gas, and water to your home.
- Ensure that pets and livestock will be cared for in a disaster. Keep food and supplies for your pet in your home disaster kit.
- Establish a network of friends and neighbors who are willing to work together in a disaster. If each household is prepared for a disaster, the community as a whole will be able to recover more quickly.
It’s also vital to be aware of hazards and their proximity to your home and workplace. Make sure you know whether your home lies in a flood plaIn, avalanche zone, or other hazardous area. If you need help determining whether your home is at risk, please feel free to contact our office and ask.
Once you know what hazards you face, there are many measures you can take to reduce your likelihood of disaster losses. Some mitigation measures are a function of a household’s specific vulnerabilities. However, some large-scale events, such as earthquakes, can cause such wide-spread destruction that all residents should take steps to prepare for them. It’s always a good idea to be ready for even the most unexpected event. Hazard-specific information can be found on the Juneau Hazards page.
If you wish to become more involved in your community’s disaster preparedness, consider joining the Community Emergency Response Team. Click on the link for more information.