Emergency Preparedness - Family Preparedness

Improving our national preparedness is not just a job for the professionals - law enforcement, firefighters and others.  All Americans should begin a process of learning about potential threats so we are better prepared to react during an emergency.

While there is no way to predict what will happen, or what your personal circumstances will be, there are three simple things you can do now to prepare yourself and your loved ones.

  1. Assemble an Emergency Supply Kit
  2. Complete the Family Communications Plan
  3. Make a Family Communication Plan.  Your family may not be together at home when an emergency occurs. Make sure everyone knows contact numbers and how to get in touch and keep a list of emergency numbers near the phone. 
  4. Learn More About Readiness.  Planning helps - if your family knows what to expect, they will be calmer in the aftermath of an emergency.   Other ways to prepare include taking a first aid and CPR class so that you can provide emergency medical help. Review your insurance policies to reduce the economic impact of a potential disaster. Remember to make accommodations for elderly family members and neighbors or those with special needs. Finally, try to make arrangements for pets not allowed in public shelters.

Further Reading

  • Homeland Security Advisory System Recommendations: Recommended actions for each of the risk/alert levels.
  • Family Disaster Plan
  • Your Family Disaster Supplies Kit
  • Food and Water in an Emergency
  • Frequently Asked Questions: Personal Protection & Chemical or Biological Terrorism
  • Before Disaster Strikes: How to make sure you're financially prepared to deal with a natural disaster
  • Illinois Department of Public Health, Emergency Preparedness Website