Monday, May 22, 2006

A New NC Web Site To Help Prepare For Emergencies

As we saw with Hurricane "Katrina" in 2005, we all need to be prepared to survive for several days after a storm without outside help. It is a wise precaution to have a disaster supply kit and a disaster plan of action inplace before a storm strikes your area.
The state of North Carolina has developed a new web site to help citizens get ready for the next natural disaster that could affect the state.

STATE UNVEILS NEW WEBSITE TO HELP CITIZENS PREPARE FOR EMERGENCIES

Personal Preparedness is the Focus as the 2006 Hurricane Season Approaches


RALEIGH – As North Carolina prepares for the 2006 hurricane season, the state today kicked off a public awareness campaign aimed at getting people to take personal responsibility for themselves and their families in emergency situations. The campaign features a new website – ReadyNC.org – that includes information on how to prepare for any type of emergency as well as information on what type of emergencies occur in North Carolina.

The ReadyNC.org website includes links on such things as emergency planning for families, seniors, the disabled and pets; first aid; home safety; power outages; how to evacuate and shelter-in-place; and where people can go for local assistance and volunteer opportunities. The site also includes information on the types of severe weather that impact North Carolina, as well as tips for dealing with terrorism, radiation and contagious diseases. The pages include links to other sources of information at the federal, state and local levels. The website will be translated into Spanish and available at ListoNC.org – which is ReadyNC.org in Spanish – early this summer.

A recent Elon University poll found that 57 percent of the residents in North Carolina, Virginia, South Carolina, Georgia and Florida said they and their families have done nothing to get ready for the 2006 hurricane season. Only 18 percent of those polled said they were assembling an emergency kit.

“It’s hard to believe that after Hurricanes Fran, Floyd, Isabel, Frances, Ivan and some of the terrible winter storms we’ve had that so many people would not have taken some very simple precautions to be ready,” said Doug Hoell, Director of N.C. Emergency Management. “Our state has an excellent emergency response system and our partners at the county emergency management agencies will do everything they can to help in an emergency, but the fact is that people may have to take care of themselves for the first 48-to-72 hours after a disaster.”

The ReadyNC.org website will be advertised on a series of billboards (JPEG attached) across the state beginning in June that read “Got bottled water? Canned food? Evacuation plan? Prepare Now!” The campaign logo is an outline of the state with the words “Make a Plan, Build a Kit, Be Involved – ReadyNC.org.” The phrases are also part of the website and direct readers to which portions of the website will help them with emergency planning, building an emergency supplies kit, and seeking out volunteer opportunities and local assistance.

The campaign is being paid for with U.S. Homeland Security grant funds assigned to the N.C. Citizen Corps program. Citizen Corps is a network of state, local and tribal councils whose mission is to encourage every citizen to participate in making communities better prepared to respond to emergencies through education, training, and volunteer service.

CCPS and Citizen Corps are working with a committee of the N.C. Emergency Management Association (NCEMA) to enhance public education efforts using the ReadyNC.org website as a basis for expansion. The groups hope to work with private industry, amateur and professional sport teams and personalities, non-profit organizations, and other government agencies to carry the preparedness message throughout the state.

Governor Easley has declared May 21-27 Hurricane Preparedness Week in North Carolina in conjunction with the national recognition. Easley issued a press release last week urging citizens to prepare now for what is expected to be a busy season.

“Unfortunately, North Carolina is subject to bad weather all year round,” said Emergency Management Director Hoell. “It’s tornado season now, hurricane season is coming, and winter follows that. People should enjoy all the beauty that North Carolina has to offer, but we have to be ready for the storms that we know are going to happen.”

Here is the link to the ReadyNC.org.
http://www.readync.org/

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