City of Woodstock urges all citizens and businesses to make or update a disaster plan during the month of September. As we continue to respond to COVID-19, there’s no better time than the present to update your plan. You can find resources to help at ready.gov. The Department of Homeland Security suggests weekly activities to do this month so that you are ready for whatever comes.
During week 1, September 1-5, make a plan for your household by discussing how you will receive emergency alerts, what you will do to shelter in place and evacuate if necessary, how you will communicate with loved ones, and what you need for an emergency preparedness kit.
There is a link to a very thorough template on ready.gov’s National Preparedness Month page. You can complete the document and make copies to keep in cars, purses, or backpacks so each member of your household can refer to it in the event of an emergency.
During week 2, September 6-12, take time to build your kit. Gather what you will need to stay at home or evacuate to a safer location in the event of an emergency. Ready.gov lists recommended items for a basic emergency supply kit. You need one gallon of water per person per day for at list three days for drinking and hygiene as well as a three-day supply of food. Don’t forget pets’ need for food and water.
Other items recommended include first aid kits, dust masks, plastic sheeting and duct tape. It’s suggested that you keep important family documents like insurance policies, identification, and bank records saved electronically or in a waterproof, portable container.
During week 3, September 13-19, limit the impacts a disaster may have on your household. Think about the potential for major storm damage. Check to ensure your homeowners or renters insurance policy covers all of your needs.
Be sure you are signed up to receive emergency alerts. If you click STAY CONNECTED on woodstockga.gov you will find a link to sign up for Cherokee Sherriff’s Office updates through CodeRED.
During week 4, September 20-26, teach your children about preparedness. There are resources for kids, teens, families, and even educators on ready.gov including information on coping when disaster strikes and financial preparedness. There are also resources available in Spanish.
Additionally, Woodstock Fire & Rescue recommends that you take time during the month of September to check the batteries in your smoke detectors. Having multiple smoke detectors in your home may reduce the time it takes for smoke to activate the alarm. WFD also recommends you inspect your fire extinguishers. Be sure they are visible, unobstructed, and have no signs of damage, corrosion, or leakage.
Finally, take time to learn more from the American Red Cross at redcross.org. You can sign up to receive preparedness times or get involved as a volunteer and there’s an online store with emergency preparedness gear and first aid kits.