According to local disaster cleanup professional Charles Hare, owner of ServPro of Rockford, Hurricane Isaac was a recent, powerful reminder about the importance of disaster preparedness — not only for those in the path of the storm, but for all homeowners.
“Natural disasters come in different forms, depending on where you live,” said Hare. “For some, tornadoes pose a threat. For others, it’s drenching rain, high winds, flash flooding, lightning strikes, snow and ice, or even out-of-control brush fires. The one thing all of these extraordinary events have in common is that they can strike with little warning and can turn your life upside down.”
Each year, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) designates September as National Preparedness Month. ServPro, as a coalition member of FEMA’s Ready Campaign, says this is the perfect time to take some simple steps to help weather a sudden emergency.
ServPro franchisees, including Hare, are trained professionals in helping homeowners prepare for natural disasters, cope with the immediate aftermath and then put a plan in place to restore their properties.
Hare says one important disaster readiness step all families can take is to build a basic emergency supply kit, stocked with necessities to keep each family member (and pet) supplied with water, food and required medications for at least three days.
A basic “Readiness Kit” would include the following:
• Water (1 gallon per person per day);
• Three-day non-perishable food supply;
• Manual can opener;
• Battery-operated radio, preferably a NOAA weather radio;
• Flashlight and extra batteries;
• First aid kit;
• Whistle (to signal for help);
• Dust masks or bandanas;
• Local maps;
• Important documents, such as copies of insurance policies, identification and bank account information; and
• Matches (in a waterproof container).
“Of course, your family members may not all be at home when disaster strikes,” said Hare, “so another key component of your readiness planning is to set a place to meet and a plan for contacting each other. Taking the time to prepare and plan now can make all the difference in the first few stressful hours after disaster strikes.”
ServPro of Rockford specializes in disaster restoration, cleanup and repair services, helping to remediate damage, making it “Like it never even happened,” for both commercial and residential customers.
Rockford-area residents are encouraged to visit ServPro of Rockford for free readiness resources including emergency supply checklists and tips about emergency planning. Residents also have access to ServPro’s free Ready Plan Mobile Application, available on all smartphones. For more information about the App, visit www.servpro.com/ready.
From the Sept. 26-Oct. 2, 2012, issue