Disaster or Emergency Preparedness Plan for Women

When disaster strikes, you may not have much time to act. Prepare now for a sudden emergency. By taking simple steps to prepare your family for natural or other disasters, you can help protect your loved ones and you will be able to cope better if a disaster does occur.

There are three basic steps for disaster or emergency preparedness:

  • 1. KNOW - what natural or other disasters could occur in your area and how to prepare for them. Know what your local evacuation routes are so that you know how to leave an area quickly. The Federal Emergency Management Agency has lots of information on preparedness. For information on pandemic flu and avian influenza, see www.pandemicflu.gov.
  • 2. PLAN - make an emergency plan - and give family members a copy of it. Talk with your family members so they know the potential disasters or emergencies that could happen in your area and explain how to respond to each of them. Select a meeting place, other than your home, for your loved ones to meet in case it's unsafe to return to home or you are unable to. Make sure you designate an "emergency check-in" contact and teach your children the phone number for this contact. This is important in case you get separated during a disaster! Download a ready-made checklist (PDF file).
  • 3. PACK - emergency supplies in your home to meet your needs for three days. Always keep all of your important documentation together, in one place, in case you have to "grab and go" during an evacuation.