1. Make A Plan
Planning ahead is the first step to a calmer and more assured disaster response.
- Talk - Discuss with your family all the types of disasters that can happen.
- Plan - Choose a place to meet after a disaster happens. Remember, family pets are not allowed at Red Cross shelters. Make prior arrangements with animal shelters or veterinarians.
- Learn - Each adult in your household should learn how and when to turn off utilities such as electricity, water and gas. Keep a fire extinguisher in your home and learn how to use it.
- Practice - Drive your evacuation route and plot alternate routes on a map in case main roads are impassable. Practice tornado a nd fire drills at home.
2. Build A Kit
What you have on hand when a disaster happens can make a big difference. Plan to store enough supplies for everyone in your household for at least three days.
- Water - Have at least one gallon per person per day.
- Food - Pack non-perishable, high protein items, including energy bars and ready to eat soup.
- Flashlight and Battery - Operated Radio - Include extra batteries.
- First Aid Kit and Medications - Remember eyeglasses or contact lenses.
- Tools - Gather a manual can opener, screwdriver, pliers, knife, duct tape, plastic sheeting and garbage bags.
- Clothing - A change of clothes for everyone
- Personal Items - Toilet paper and toiletries; comfort items like books and toys; copies of important papers, including ID cards, insurance policies, birth certificates and passports.
- Money - Have cash. If the power goes out, ATMs and credit cards won’t work.
- Pet Supplies - Include food, water, leashes, litter box or plastic bags, tags and medications and vaccination information.
- Map - Consider marking an evacuation route from your area.
- Emergency Car Kit – Make sure to keep a smaller version of your kit in your car at all times for unexpected emergencies.
3. Get Trained
Make sure that at least one member of your household is trained in first aid and CPR and in how to use an automated external defibrillator (AED). Check the Scene. Call 9-1-1. Care for the victim.
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5. Give Blood
Blood is needed in times of emergency, but the ongoing need is also great. In Louisiana, the Red Cross does not collect blood. However, we encourage you to give blood at your local hospital or blood bank.