WASHINGTON, Aug. 17 As the American Red Crossmonitors the track of Hurricane Dean in the Caribbean, we urge everyone totake steps to prepare their families and homes for a disaster.
Prepare for High Winds
Give yourself enough time before a storm to conduct a home hazard hunt andperimeter search, in which you inspect your home for items that can move,fall, break or cause a fire.
If a hurricane watch is issued:
The Red Cross strongly recommends that individuals and families takepreventive measures to ensure their personal safety during a hurricane watchand before a warning is issued:
Something else to keep in mind is the value of neighbors during adifficult time. Working with neighbors can save lives. Know your neighbors'special skills and consider how you could help neighbors who are elderly orhave disabilities. Make plans for child care in case parents cannot get home -- that way, all of the children in your neighborhood can be safe.
At any time, everyone can take steps to "Be Red Cross Ready" for all typesof disasters in three simple actions: 1) get a kit, 2) make a plan and 3) beinformed.
GET A KIT
Gather enough emergency supplies to meet your needs if you have toevacuate or you are asked to stay at home. A portable kit, stored in a sturdy,easy to carry, water resistant container should have enough supplies for threedays. The Red Cross also recommends having at least two weeks worth ofsupplies at home and to keep a smaller kit in the trunk of your car. Yourthree-day disaster supplies kit should include:
MAKE A PLAN
The American Red Cross, the National Weather Service and the Department ofHomeland Security urge each and every family to develop a family disasterplan.
For more information regarding how individuals and families can preparefor disasters visit http://www.redcross.org or contact your local Red Crosschapter.
The American Red Cross helps people prevent, prepare for and respond toemergencies. Last year, almost a million volunteers and 35,000 employeeshelped victims of almost 75,000 disasters; taught lifesaving skills tomillions; and helped U.S. service members separated from their families stayconnected. Almost 4 million people gave blood through the Red Cross, thelargest supplier of blood and blood products in the United States. TheAmerican Red Cross is part of the International Red Cross and Red CrescentMovement. An average of 91 cents of every dollar the Red Cross spends isinvested in humanitarian services and programs. The Red Cross is not agovernment agency; it relies on donations of time, money, and blood to do itswork.-- Make trees more wind resistant by removing diseased and damaged limbs -- Install hurricane or high-wind shutters on your windows or cut plywood to cover windows, and add protection to the outside areas of sliding glass doors -- Strengthen garage doors and un-reinforced masonry -- Move or secure lawn furniture, outdoor decorations or ornaments, trash cans, hanging plants and anything else that can be picked up by wind and become a projectile
SOURCE American Red Cross