(WGHP) – As we wrap up severe weather preparedness week, it is time to put what we have learned about the different types of weather emergencies into an emergency action plan. 

The first step in making sure that you and your family are prepared for severe weather is pledging to prepare. This includes developing a family emergency and communications plan. In short, know what to do before severe weather strikes by creating an emergency action plan today! 

Your family may not be together when a disaster strikes, so it is important to plan the following in advance: how you will get to a safe place, how you will contact one another, how you will get back together and what you will do depending on the situation. 

One of the first things to do in the event of severe weather is ensure that you and your family members know about your surroundings and the severe weather risks in your area. 

Have an emergency plan in place and know what to do before the severe weather strikes. A great way to do this is to create a family emergency plan from the readync.org website. 

Make sure you’re staying up to date with the severe weather by having multiple ways to receive weather alerts. A few ways include the MyFOX8 news app, cell phone alerts, weather radio, and social media. Do not rely on a single source for weather alerts because sometimes technology can fail. 

Identify an appropriate shelter in your home, neighborhood and community ahead of the severe weather event. This is especially important if you live in a mobile home. Storm shelters are available in several counties during severe weather, visit https://www.readync.gov/stay-informed/open-shelters to see what shelters are open in your area. 

Learn how to strengthen your home and business against severe weather. This is a great way to further protect your house and your family in the event of severe weather and can be incredibly helpful during a severe weather event such as a hurricane or tropical storm. 

What should you include in your emergency preparedness kit? 

In the event of an emergency, it’s a good idea to have a kit full of supplies ready to go. The following are important items that are recommended to be included in your emergency preparedness kit. 

  • Water: 1 gallon per person per day for 3 to 7 days
  • Food: non-perishable and canned food supply for 3 to 7 days
  • Battery-powered or hand crank radio and weather radio with extra batteries 
  • Cell phone with charger and portable chargers in the event of a power outage
  • First aid kit 
  • Flashlight and extra batteries 
  • Wrench or pliers to turn off water 
  • Blanket or sleeping bags
  • Daily toiletries such as toothbrushes, soap, medications, etc. 
  • Extra house and car keys
  • Important documents such as insurance policies, driver’s license, social security card, bank records etc.
  • Fire extinguisher
  • Cash 

If you have a pet, you’ll need to have emergency supplies for them too. The following are recommended for your pet’s kit. 

  • Canned or dry pet food
  • Water for 3 to 7 days
  • Food dishes
  • Collar and leash
  • Immunization records
  • Identification tag
  • Current photos of your pet in case they become lost
  • Pet beds and toys
  • Pet carrier 

A severe weather plan and an emergency kit can help you stay on top of whatever the weather may through at you. Visit https://www.readync.gov/plan-and-prepare/get-kit for more information on how you can plan and prepare for a severe weather event.