Are You Prepared?
The most important thing you may do for your family is to properly prepare for a disaster. Disasters can take many forms, but preparation for all of them involves simple planning steps.
In Florida, we all worry about hurricane season every year, and you
will find a wealth of information to prepare yourself and your family in the
event we are threatened by a hurricane again, however, we should prepare for all types of disasters.
Emergencies can include natural disasters, severe weather, explosions, chemical spills and disease outbreaks.
Table of Contents
Before A Disaster Strikes
- Choose a place for your family to meet after a disaster.
- Choose a person outside the immediate area for family members to contact in case you get separated. This person should live far enough away so they are not involved in the same emergency.
- Assemble a disaster kit that allows you to be selfsustaining for three-five days
- Know where a safe place is in your home. This can be used for hurricanes, tornadoes, or to shelter in place in case of a chemical release.
- Know how to contact your children at their school or day care, and how to pick them up after a disaster. Keep your child’s emergency information up to date.
- Prepare a plan and discuss with your family how you should react to all hazards that may affect you. Make sure everyone knows what to do.
- Learn your community’s public warning signals, what they sound like, where they come from and what you should do when you hear them.
- Learn first aid and CPR. Have a first aid kit, a first aid manual and extra medicine for family members.
- Learn how to shut off your water, gas and electricity properly. Know where to find shut-off valves and switches.
- Have a small amount of cash available. If the power is out, ATM machines won’t work.
- Make copies of your vital records and store them in a safe location. Keep photos and videotapes of your home and valuables.
- Make sure family members know all the possible ways to get out of your home. Keep all exits clear.
- Make sure your plans include taking care of your pets.
- Purchase a NOAA Weather Radio.
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What Are Some of the Different Types of Emergencies?
- Tropical storms
- Severe weather
- Hazardous materials incidents
- Technological events
- Man-made events
- Gas line explosions
- Multiple casualty events
- Freeze warnings
- Oil spills or other environmental emergencies
- Homeland security
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What Kind of Emergency Supplies Should I Have?
Seven (7) days per person emergency supplies included, are not limited to the following:
- Seven (7) gallons of water;
- Non-perishable food and utensils;
- Change of clothing and footwear;
- A blanket or sleeping bag;
- First aid kit;
- Flashlight and extra batteries;
- Hygiene materials;
- Extra pair of glasses;
- Important family documents in a waterproof container;
- Emergency cash or traveler’s checks.
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Click here for a shopping list to help you build your own Disaster Kit.
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What About Filling My Prescription Medications?
Emergency-preparedness prescription medication refills. —All health insurers, managed care organizations, and other entities that are licensed by the Office of Insurance Regulation and provide prescription medication coverage as part of a policy or contract shall waive time restrictions on prescription medication refills, which include suspension of electronic “refill too soon” edits to pharmacies, to enable insureds or subscribers to refill prescriptions in advance, if there are authorized refills remaining, and shall authorize payment to pharmacies for at least a 30-day supply of any prescription medication, regardless of the date upon which the prescription had most recently been filled by a pharmacist, when the following conditions occur:
- Is under a hurricane warning issued by the National Weather Service;
- Is declared to be under a state of emergency in an executive order issued by the Governor; or
- Has activated its emergency operations center and its emergency management plan.
- The prescription medication refill is requested within 30 days after the origination date of the conditions stated in this section or until such conditions are terminated by the issuing authority or no longer exist. The time period for the waiver of prescription medication refills may be extended in 15- or 30-day increments by emergency orders issued by the Office of Insurance Regulation.
This section does not excuse or exempt an insured or subscriber from compliance with all other terms of the policy or contract providing prescription medication coverage. This section takes effect July 1, 2006.
Source: 2014 Florida Statutes; www.leg.state.fl.us/Statutes; 252.358
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