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Make a Plan

Emergency Preparedness Plan

Natural disasters such as tornadoes, severe thunderstorms, hurricanes and floods affect thousands of people every year.  It’s important to know what our risks are in Alabama and prepare to protect yourself, your family and community.
Recognizing an impending hazard and knowing what to do to protect yourself and your family will help you take effective steps to prepare beforehand and aid recovery after the event.

Some of the things you can do to prepare for the unexpected, such as assembling a supply kit and developing a family emergency plan, are the same for all types of hazards. However each emergency is unique and knowing the actions to take for each threat will impact the specific decisions and preparations you make. By learning about these specific threats, you are preparing yourself to react in an emergency.

Your family may not be together when a disaster strikes so it is important to plan in advance: how you will get to a safe place; how you will contact one another; how you will get back together; and what you will do in different situations.


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As you prepare, tailor your plans and supplies to your specific daily living needs and responsibilities. Most or all individuals have both specific personal needs as well as resources to assist others. You and your household and others you help or rely on for assistance should work together.

As part of tailoring your plans, consider working with others to create networks of neighbors, relatives, friends and co-workers who will assist each other in an emergency. Discuss your needs and responsibilities and how people in the network can assist each other with communication, care of children, pets, or specific needs like the operation of durable medical equipment. Create your own personal network for specific areas where you need assistance.

Factors to Keep In Mind

Households/individuals should consider and customize their plans for individual needs and responsibilities based on the methods of communication, types of shelter and methods of transportation available to them.


Other factors to keep in mind include:
• different ages of members
• responsibilities for assisting others
• locations frequented
• dietary needs
• medical needs including prescriptions and equipment
• disabilities or access and functional needs including devices and equipment
• languages
• cultural and religious considerations
• pets or service animals

In planning for emergencies, all of these individual differences make it important for every household and each individual to consider what they need in their plans and their supplies.


A few examples of considerations for tailoring your plans and supplies include:

  • Households with children should understand the school’s plans and where the children will stay safe if adults in the household need to shelter in other locations until the immediate hazard is over.

  • Individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing should make sure that they can receive emergency alerts and warnings in an accessible form.

  • Individuals who require accessible transportation should work with their local paratransit and disability service providers to make an emergency plan.

  • People who speak languages other than English may need to identify sources of alerts and warnings and information about community plans in other languages.

  • People without vehicles should know local plans for public transportation and may need to make arrangements for transportation from local government, organizations or others.

  • Households with infants should plan for food and supplies for infants and nursing mothers.

  • People with dietary needs should have an adequate emergency food supply to meet their needs.

  • People who take medications should maintain an adequate supply, and copies of their prescriptions.

  • People with service animals should work with local emergency management to ensure that their service dog will be admitted to shelters with them during emergencies (as required by law) and should make sure their plan kit supplies include food and other items for their service animal.

  • People who require power for medical or other assistive devices should consider how they will maintain the use of these devices if there is a loss of power. Keep extra batteries for small devices (hearing aids, cell phones for example) and consider obtaining and learning how to use a generator for home use and carrying a charger when away from home, especially when loss of power may jeopardize health or safety.


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