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26, 2012 –With National Preparedness Month underway this is a prime
opportunity to review your family’s emergency plan. Knowing what to do before,
during and after an emergency is a critical part of being prepared and may make
all the difference in a crisis. The Better Business Bureau serving Chicago and
Northern Illinois (BBB) urges families to devise and discuss their disaster plan.< ?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" /?>
Safety is paramount in an emergency, and knowing
what to do when- stay or go- can differ depending upon the disaster. There are important differences among potential types of
emergencies that should influence the decisions you make and the actions you
“When your safety is in question it is extremely important
to have a plan,” said Steve J. Bernas, President and CEO of the Better Business
an extremely useful tool which lists different emergencies that could happen in
your community and helps identify the best possible responses.”
Two things every family needs
regardless of the disaster are an emergency plan and an emergency kit.
For an emergency plan, make sure all
family members know where to meet and who to contact in case you get separated.
A relative or friend in another area is an ideal emergency contact person. Make
sure everyone in the family knows how to send and receive text messages.
Consider downloading smart phone apps that provide emergency information.
recommends the following items for an emergency kit:
- A gallon of water per person per day for three
- A three-day supply of nonperishable food for
each family member
- A flashlight with extra batteries
- First-aid kit
- A whistle to signal for help
- Dust masks
- A wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
- A power inverter or solar charger for your
You may consider including
prescriptions (at the very least a list of prescriptions), infant formula and
diapers, pet food and cash. Place copies of important family documents
(insurance policies, identification and financial records) in a waterproof,
portable container near your escape route. Pencil and paper, paper cups and
plates, and plastic utensils are also useful. If you have kids, pack some
games, books or puzzles. Maintaining your kit is also important. You will want
to replace stored water and food about every six months. Mark the date on
containers or cans.
For more information you can trust,
As a private, non-profit
organization, the purpose of the Better Business Bureau is to promote an
ethical marketplace. BBBs help resolve buyer/seller complaints by means of
conciliation, mediation and arbitration. BBBs also review advertising claims,
online business practices and charitable organizations. BBBs develop and
issue reviews on businesses and nonprofit organizations and encourage people
to check out a company or charity before making a purchase or donation.