Disasters can strike at any time, and the American Red Cross serving Riverside County encourages everyone to take the first step during National Preparedness Month and join America’s PrepareAthon, creating a disaster plan for their household that can help keep people safe in an emergency.
“Having an emergency plan is an important step so everyone in the household knows what they should do if something happens,” said Maxine Margaritis, American Red Cross regional CEO. “We believe people should mark National Preparedness Month by creating or updating their plan.”
Additionally, the Red Cross serving Riverside County will be providing the public various opportunities to learn how to get prepared by participating at the following events. We encourage all Riverside County residents to join us at these events and learn the basic steps of preparedness.
Sept. 14, 2014 (12:35 p.m.)
PrepareSoCal Day at the Angels
Angels Stadium, Anaheim, CA
*50% off original ticket window prices on select seating! Enter promo code PREPARE and $3 per ticket will be donated to the American Red Cross.
Sept. 18, 2014 (11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.)
National Preparedness Month Expo
Indio Senior Center
45700 Aladdin Street
Indio, CA 92201
Sept. 27, 2014 (10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.)
4th Annual Temecula Health & Community Resource Fair
Temecula Civic Center
41000 Main Street
Temecula, CA 92590
Ready Riverside Emergency Preparedness Fair (11:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.)
3520 Tyler Street (Target Store Parking Lot)
Riverside, CA 92522
Sept. 30, 2014 (6:00 – 8:00 p.m.)
Earthquake and Disaster Preparedness Presentation
American Red Cross, Riverside County
6235 River Crest Dr. Suite A
Riverside, CA 92507
Oct. 11, 2014 (9:00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m.)
Senior focused Earthquake and Disaster Preparedness Presentations
Janet Goeske Center
5257 Sierra St.
Riverside, CA 92504
Everyone in the household should help put the emergency plan together so they know what to do if something occurs. Because everyone may not be together at home when a disaster happens, the plan should include ways to contact one another and two places to meet – one near the home in case of a sudden emergency like a fire, and one outside the neighborhood in case circumstances prevent people from returning home. The plan should also identify an emergency contact person from outside the area in case local telephone lines are overloaded or out of service.
Any emergency plan should also include decisions about where to go if ordered to evacuate and what route to take to get there. It’s a good idea to include alternate routes in case roads are closed. Don’t forget family pets. Make sure to include plans for them such as pet-friendly hotels and animal shelters along the evacuation route.
The most common threat people face across the country is a fire in their home. National Preparedness Month is a good time to develop a fire escape plan and practice it with everyone in the household. When developing the plan, walk through the home and look at all exits and possible escape routes, including windows. List two ways to get out of every room in case fire blocks one of the paths. Pick a place to meet outside, a safe distance away and – no matter the circumstances – stay out of the home until fire officials say it is okay to go back inside. All households should practice their plan at least twice a year.
People should also install smoke alarms on every level of their home, inside bedrooms and outside sleeping areas. They should test the alarms monthly, replace the batteries at least once a year and replace them every ten years.
The Red Cross has developed mobile apps that provide information on what to do before, during and after emergencies, including a “Make a Plan” feature on how to develop an emergency plan. The free apps can be downloaded from the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store for Android by searching for American Red Cross.
For more information on how to prepare for all types of emergencies, people can visit redcross.org/riverside or contact the American Red Cross serving Riverside County at (888) 831-0031.
About the American Red Cross
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or join our blog at http://blog.redcross.org.