It’s now week two of National Preparedness Month, and for this week the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) advises people to “Make a Plan.”

Dallas County Emergency Management Coordinator A.J. Seely emphasizes that planning ahead is a simple but effective way to keep yourself and others safe during times of crisis. “This could be as broad or as narrow as we like it to be. We typically encourage folks to focus really on the primary threats, so hazards like fire or potentially a water shortage or outage. So if for whatever reason you don’t have electricity or a water main breaks, we want people to be able to be prepared to handle those types of situations. Doing that takes those emergencies and just turns them into minor inconveniences.”

Seely says when it comes to water outages, he recommends having a gallon of water per person in your household per day for up to three days. As for electrical outages, he says a simple thing like having a phone charger in your car is helpful, but those dependant on it for medical reasons should ensure they have a generator on hand or at least somewhere they can go if they lose power. Seely also recommends having a fire evacuation plan, a tornado shelter location, and a method for receiving emergency alerts from local authorities. Specifically related to weather, he says listening to Raccoon Valley Radio Severe Weather Action Team coverage is a good idea to keep up to date on where storms are headed.

To learn more about National Preparedness Month, click the first link below to visit the Dallas County EMA Facebook page. You can also click the second link to listen to the Perry Fareway Let’s Talk Dallas County program with Seely.