Personal Readiness – It is your responsibility. Only you can ensure you are ready. Being ready means learning about the various types of disasters that affect Los Angeles, assembling emergency supply kits for our homes, places of employment and our cars. It means having and practicing a family disaster plan that includes emergency procedures for when you are home and when family members are away from home or at school. Your emergency supply kit and your plan should reflect personal sustainability for a minimum of 72 hours. The needs of small children, seniors, family members with disabilities and pets should be included in this planning process. Being prepared helps ensure you will be better equipped to respond appropriately when disaster strikes.
Neighborhood Readiness – Your neighbor could be your first responder. Take time now to meet and talk to your neighbors about the importance of preparedness. Just think what would happen if you are stranded in your neighborhood for days or weeks. Getting to know your neighbors and the skills and resources within your community could very well save your life. Free Community Emergency Response Training (CERT) is available through the LAFD.
Neighborhood Councils – Many Los Angelenos are looking for ways to make a difference in their communities on the issues they care about, such as disaster readiness. Participating in a neighborhood council is one-way residents, business owners, and property owners can advocate directly for real change in their communities. Neighborhood councils are city-certified local groups made up of people who live, work, own property or have some other connection to a neighborhood. For more information on how to get involved or to see a list of neighborhood councils, visit EmpowerLA.org.
Know what resources and training are available and how to access them – Find out which organizations and services are already in your area. Make a list and distribute them to your block club or share with your neighbors. One call to City Hall 311 is a great resource. The County of Los Angeles also has a 211 information number. Here are a few tips to getting your plan started:
American Red Cross offers CPR and Disaster Relief Shelter Certification
Community Emergency Response Team (CERT)
Take online FEMA Emergency Management Institute courses