Prepare to Weather the Future Storms of 2011
Preparedness for severe weather is a nationwide initiative, as weather watchdogs like Weather Services International are predicting 15 named storms in 2011, including eight hurricanes, two or three of which may hit landfall in the United States.
Hurricanes often spur additional weather emergencies including tornadoes and flooding. While severe storms, tornadoes, floods and hurricanes are inevitable in spring, summer and even into fall, planning and preparation can make severe weather challenges manageable and even help save lives.
One of the most common occurrences in storms–regardless of severity–is the loss of electricity. Losing electricity does not have to mean loss of all power. Whether it is a brief inconvenience or a prolonged outage, use flashlights or lanterns and make sure they are easily accessible for all family members. Energizer® Weatheready® lights feature long-lasting LED technology. This extensive flashlight line is designed to provide extended runtimes so your family has light where and when it is needed most.
Another important safety measure is to avoid the temptation to light candles when the power fails. According to the National Fire Protection Association, more than 15,000 fires are caused annually by candle use, and the risk of a fatal candle fire is greatest when the candles are used as a light source. A flashlight for every family member ensures safe lighting during power outages.
The Federal Emergency Management Association (FEMA) recommends the following items for an emergency preparedness kit. Keep these items together in a safe location for access in case of storm damage.
- Water: According to FEMA, each person should have a supply of one gallon of water per day for three days, as a normally active person needs at least one-half gallon of water daily just for drinking, in addition to cooking and sanitation.
- Nonperishable food and a manual can opener
- Antibacterial Hand Wipes for when soap and water are not available.
- One change of clothing and footwear per person; toys and books for children
- One blanket or sleeping bag per person
- A first aid kit, including necessary prescription medications and eyeglasses
- Pictures of family members and pets, in the event of separation
- Pet care items
- Extra set of car keys
- Vehicle fuel tanks filled
- Credit card or cash
- Special items for infant, elderly or disabled family members
“An emergency power kit along with other essentials can help ensure the comfort and safety of families throughout the country in severe weather situations,” said Jim Olsen, vice president of marketing for Energizer North America. “We are reminding families to be prepared for power outages by putting together their own backup power kits to ensure they are always prepared for blackouts due to severe weather situations.”
With the severe weather season of 2011 already breaking records—681 recorded tornadoes in April alone, according to The Weather Channel—taking the following steps before weather disasters strike will help ensure you and your family are prepared.
- Develop a family plan so that everyone knows what to do in weather emergencies
- Know where you will go
- Secure your home whenever you have time to prepare
- Have a pet plan to ensure the well-being of your animals
In addition to a backup power kit and emergency supplies keep copies of important medical records, insurance documents and personal family papers easily accessible.