Having emergency numbers on hand is an essential part of being
prepared. During an emergency, it's easy to become disoriented or upset, so you
need to have all important phone numbers readily available ahead of time.
each phone number clearly so that it will be easy for kids to read. Use a pen
with dark-colored ink because pencil or light-colored ink can be harder to read
when you're in a hurry or if lights are dim. If you choose to create your own
phone list, make sure your list includes the following numbers:
medical services (In most places this is 911, but your community may
have its own number. Check your telephone book if you're unsure.)
control center (Call 1-800-222-1222 to be connected to a center in
at work, including cell phone and pager
- neighbor or
list should also include known allergies, especially to any medication, medical
conditions, and insurance information for all members of the family.
accidents can happen in any part of the home, make copies of the completed list
and post one near every telephone in the house. In addition, make sure that
adults who come to the house to watch your children (babysitters or relatives,
for example) familiarize themselves with the list.
can also set up a network of friends and family who live outside of your area to
keep in touch with during an emergency. It may be easier to make a long-distance
phone call than to call across town, so an out-of-state contact may be in a
better position to communicate among separated family members. Be sure
every member of your family knows the phone number and has coins or a prepaid
phone card to call the emergency contact. You may have trouble getting through,
or the telephone system may be down altogether,
but be patient.
Organizations During Natural Disasters:
American Red Cross
Red Cross disaster relief focuses on meeting the emergency
disaster-caused needs of individuals and families. When a disaster threatens or
strikes, they provide shelter, food, and health and mental health services,
which address basic human needs. In addition, they help individuals and families
to resume their normal daily activities independently. This may include a
referral or a way to pay for what is needed most: groceries, new clothes, rent,
emergency home repairs, transportation, household items, medicines, and
The Red Cross may also help those needing long-term
recovery assistance when all other available resources, including insurance,
government, private, and community assistance, are either unavailable or
inadequate to meet the needs. All assistance is based on verified
disaster-caused needs and all assistance is free.
The Red Cross also feeds disaster victims and emergency
workers, handles inquiries from concerned immediate family members outside the
disaster-affected area, provides blood and blood products to disaster victims,
and links disaster victims to other available resources. You can visit them at http://www.redcross.org.
Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)
is an independent federal agency with more than 2,600 full time employees. They
work at FEMA headquarters in Washington D.C., at regional and area offices
across the country, at the Mount Weather Emergency Operations Center, and at the
FEMA training center in Emmitsburg, Maryland. FEMA also has nearly 4,000 standby
disaster assistance employees who are available to help out after disasters.
Often FEMA works in partnership with other organizations that are part of the
nation's emergency management system. These partners include state and local
emergency management agencies, 27 federal agencies and The American Red Cross.
mission is to educate the public on disasters so that people can prepare against
hurricanes, earthquakes, tornadoes, floods, fires or hazardous spills, or any
other acts of nature or terrorism. Their mission has been to
reduce loss of life and property and protect our nation's critical
infrastructure from all types of hazards through a comprehensive, risk-based,
emergency management program of mitigation, preparedness, response and
recovery. You can visit them at http://www.fema.org.