Disaster Preparedness Suggestions

At last night’s meeting of the Victory Heights Community Council (read the full minutes here) we heard all about disaster preparedness and tips that could really make a difference. Think about recent events in Houston, Florida, Puerto Rico, and Mexico City. Is it so incredible to think about a massive earthquake hitting the Puget Sound area?  Even if there were no substantial damage in our neighborhood, it’s estimated it could be two weeks before we would see outside assistance (other higher priority areas, debris, damaged bridges). Here are some suggestions that would make survival a whole lot better:

  • Sturdy shoes and socks under each bed
  • Flashlight under bed
  • Remove or secure pictures / shelves around bed
  • Secure refrigerator to wall
  • Plug-in-the-wall flashlights that come on automatically when the power is cut
  • Know where the water cut-off is inside your house.
  • Learn how to turn off your gas at the meter if you smell/hear gas leaking
  • Designate an out-of-town contact person
  • WATER! (assume 1 gallon per person per day x 14 days, don’t forget your pets)
  • Strap down water heater
  • Food – do you have enough to last two weeks in your house?
  • Make/buy an emergency toilet (5 gallon buckets work)
  • Find emergency communication HUB closet to your house, work, schools (in Victory Heights there will be one set up in the park)
  • Assemble a “Get Home Bag” for your car or work
  • Scan important documents and upload to the cloud
  • Have cash in small bills stashed away, assume ATMs will not work

Here is a list of further resources:
Securing household items http://www.earthquakecountry.org/step1/index.html
Securing refrigerator to the kitchen wall https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UaMqz9Q_vgc
Turning off the WATER to your house: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RvE6n7rTGnM
Turning off GAS to your house: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=keNdbAs-sBk
Twin-Bucket Emergency Toilet http://www.portlandoregon.gov/pbem/article/394125
 Map of HUB locations in Seattle http://seattleemergencyhubs.org/seattle-emergency-neighborlink-map
 Seattle Hazards Map http://seattlecitygis.maps.arcgis.com/apps/MapSeries/index.html?appid=0489a95dad4e42148dbef571076f9b5b
Alert Seattle http://alert.seattle.gov
Smart 911 https://www.smart911.com
Add Emergency Contact Number to your phone’s lock screen http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2489237,00.asp
GPS Apps for Offline Navigation https://www.wired.com/2015/04/offline-gps-apps/
Seattle Resilience Survey http://www.seattle.gov/resilience/get-involved
The next meeting of the community council will be Tuesday, October 17th at 7 PM in the co-op preschool building in Victory Heights Park.

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