Tips on Preparing for Disasters from the Lakeway Police Chief

Todd Radford, chief of Police for the City of Lakeway, provided some tips for preparing for disasters and is outlined in an article from the Austin American Statesman. It seems that this topic is particularly relevant given COVID-19 and how unprepared so many people found themselves. Here are the Police Chief's tips on preparing for disasters:

  1. Ensure that you and your family have a plan in place. For example, if a disaster occurs while you are at home, it is important to have a predetermined place where the family will meet safely away from the danger. Each member of the household should be aware of the primary exit and have a secondary exit identified should the primary exit be blocked. In the event that a disaster occurs when you are away from home, it is important to have a secondary meeting location predetermined. As part of this scenario, you should also have an out of town destination that can provide shelter for you and your family in the event that you cannot return home immediately. Another consideration should be have a plan for all of your pets and animals. It is also a good idea to have a contact person in place who you can provide with updates who can pass along information to other family members and friends on your condition. As you can see, you may need multiple plans to make sure you are prepared for a variety of possible disasters and scenarios.

  2. Next, assemble a disaster supply kit or "go bag". It is important that all members of the family are active participants in this process and know what is in the kit and where to find it. According to the article, "The supply kit is a collection of basic items that you and your family might need to survive and remain somewhat comfortable during a disaster situation. This supply kit should be readily available in case you need to evacuate at a moment’s notice. The kit should be kept in a location near the exits you identified in your plan, and an additional kit should be inside your vehicle. FEMA recommends your disaster kit include at minimum a three-day supply of nonperishable food and water. Other things to consider in your kits are medications, extra clothing, a first aid kit, flashlights and batteries. Each kit will vary depending on the family’s specific needs."

  3. Lastly, have a bi-annual review process of your disaster plans and supply kit. If any updates are made, it is important to communicate them to all members of the household. This is also a good time to replace your water supply and swap out any items that may have expired or become unusable for new ones.

Source:

"https://www.statesman.com/opinion/20200509/lakeway-police-chief-offers-tips-on-preparing-for-disasters," Austin American Statesman.