How to Prepare for an Emergency
Family Emergency Preparedness Guide
Find out what could happen to you
Potential Disasters that may impact our
Contact your local emergency management or civil
defense office and American Red Cross chapter - be
prepared to take notes: Ask what types of disasters
are most likely to happen. Request information on
how to prepare for each. Learn about your
community's warning signals: what they sound like
and what you should do when you hear them. Ask about
animal care after disaster. Animals may not be
allowed inside emergency shelters due to health
regulations. Find out how to help elderly or
disabled persons, if needed. Next, find out about
the disaster plans at your workplace, your
children's school or daycare center and other places
where your family spends time.
Our Community's Warning Signals
During a disaster citizens will be instructed to
tune into the radio and/or television. The City of
Mesa has access to the local cable system in Mesa.
Mesa is able to interrupt local cable broadcast's to
deliver an emergency alert, as needed.
Create a Disaster Plan
Meet with your family and discuss why you
need to prepare for disaster. Explain the dangers of
fire, severe weather and earthquakes to children.
Plan to share responsibilities and work together as
a team. Discuss the types of disasters that are most
likely to happen. Explain what to do in each case.
Pick two places to meet:
- Right outside your home in case of a sudden
emergency, like a fire.
- Outside your neighborhood in case you can't
- Ask an out-of-state friend to be your
- After a disaster, it's often easier to call
- Other family members should call this person
and tell them where they are.
- Everyone must know your contact's phone
- Discuss what to do in an evacuation.
- Plan how to take care of your pets.
- Everyone must know the address and phone
Complete This Checklist
- Post emergency telephone numbers by phones
(fire, police, ambulance, etc.).
- Teach children how and when to call
911 or your local Emergency Medical Services
number for emergency help.
- Show each family member how and when to turn
off the water, gas and electricity at the main
- Check if you have adequate insurance
- Teach each family member how to use the fire
extinguisher (ABC type), and show them where
- Install smoke detectors on each level of
your home, especially near bedrooms.
- Conduct a home hazard hunt.
- Stock emergency supplies and assemble a
Disaster Supplies Kit.
- Take a Red Cross first aid and CPR class.
- Determine the best escape routes from your
- Find two ways out of each room. Find the
safe spots in your home for each type of
Practice and Maintain Your Plan
- Quiz your kids every six months so they
remember what to do.
- Conduct fire and emergency evacuation
- Replace stored water every three months and
stored food every six months.
- Test and recharge your fire extinguisher(s)
according to manufacturer's instructions.
- Test your smoke detectors monthly and
change the batteries at least once a year.
- Change batteries once each year.
Keep enough supplies in your home to meet your
needs for at least three days. Assemble a
Disaster Supplies Kit with items you may need in
an evacuation. (A
workplace supplies kit is also recommended).
Store these supplies in sturdy, easy-to-carry
containers such as backpacks, duffle bags or covered
- A three-day supply of water (one gallon per
person per day) and food that won't spoil. One
change of clothing and footwear per person, and
one blanket or sleeping bag per person.
- A first aid kit that includes your family's
- Emergency tools including a battery-powered
radio, flashlight and plenty of extra
- An extra set of car keys and a credit card,
cash or traveler's checks.
- Sanitation supplies.
- Special items for infant, elderly or
disabled family members.
- An extra pair of glasses.
important family documents in a waterproof
container. Keep a smaller kit in the truck of
Emergency Vehicle Kit:
- Battery powered radio, flashlight and extra
- Booster cables
- Fire extinguisher (5lb. ABC type)
- First aid kit
- Bottled water and non-perishable high energy
- Maps, shovel, flares Tire repair kit and
If Disaster Strikes:
Remain calm and patient.
Put your plan into action.
Check for injuries:
Give first aid and get help for seriously injured
Listen to your battery powered radio for
news and instructions:
Evacuate, if advised to do so and invoke your
Family Communications Plan. Wear protective
clothing and sturdy shoes.
Check for damage in your home:
- Use flashlights - do not light matches or
turn on electrical switches, if you suspect
- Check for fires, fire hazards and other
- Sniff for gas leaks, starting at the water
heater. If you smell gas or suspect a leak, turn
off the main gas valve, open windows, and get
everyone outside quickly.
- Shut off any other damaged utilities.
- Clean up spilled medicines, bleaches,
gasoline and other flammable liquids
- Confine or secure your
- Call your family contact-do not use the
telephone again unless it is a life-threatening
- Check on your neighbors, especially elderly
- Make sure you have an adequate water supply
in case service is cut off.
- Stay away from downed power lines.