Only the brave and strong can admit that they are not really ready should a disaster strike! Here is a quick and easy list of 10 essentials that each of us should have on hand:
1) A smoke alarm and a carbon monoxide alarm on each floor of your home. Our Del Mar Fire Department recommends changing the batteries every 6 months…have some extra batteries too.
2) Two working flashlights in your home and a battery powered radio. Remember that you can always use your car radio if necessary. Include a car charger for your cell phone.
3) A 3-5 day (up to date) supply of water (1 gal for each person in your home for 3-5 days). Authorities tell us that our water supply might be diminished should a major earthquake occur.
4) A 3-5 day (up to date) supply of non-perishable foods in your home, enough for all household members.
5) An evacuation list for items to take along if you and family are evacuated. It’s much more reliable if you plan ahead before an emergency occurs.
6) A Vial of Life standardized information form that contains important medical information and family contacts. This form can quickly assist emergency personnel and is kept in a plastic sleeve on your refrigerator. (Please contact Del Mar Community Connections at (858) 792-7565 for form and plastic sleeve.)
7) A plan for different emergencies with each household member including an out of state contact number and a meeting place if you become separated from family members. Also, make a plan to help any neighbors who you think may need help.
8) Know where the utilities are located in your home. Make sure you know when and how to turn them off, and any devices needed to turn them off.
9) Stay informed…register for the Reverse 9-1-1 County alert system which will notify you of emergencies by phone (landline and cell). Sign up for Reverse 9-1-1 on the City of San Diego website at www.readysandiego.org/alertsandiego. For the City of Del Mar notifications sign up on the City website at www.delmar.ca.us.
10) Have a plan for your pets during disaster or evacuation. Consider a microchip ID tag for easy identification.
There are many more items you could have on hand to prepare for disaster…please check the City of Del Mar website (see above) for a complete list. Also, take a look at the short “Are You Ready” Disaster Preparedness video on the City website for a quick refresher under the title “Emergency Preparedness”. This video also gives simple directions on how to handle utilities in a disaster.