The first step in preparing for a natural disaster is to make a disaster risk assessment. Being aware and informed about the type of disaster, both natural and man made, that is most likely to occur where you live, will increase your survival risk.
The West and West Coast regions of the country are the most likely to have an earth quake. If you live in “Tornado Alley” which consists of Nebraska, Oklahoma, Kansas, South Dakota and Northern Texas, you are more prone to experience tornados and high winds.
The Southeast coast and the Gulf Coast are the most susceptible to hurricanes. Florida is the most vulnerable state to hurricanes because it has two coastlines.
Even though high water can occur almost anywhere, low lying areas such as the Mississippi and Missouri rivers are the more inclined to have frequent flooding. Also, flooding and mud side disasters can occur in all mountain areas because of heavy rainfall or early snow melt.
You can be forewarned of some natural disasters such as hurricanes, tornadoes, flooding and fire by being alerted via TV broadcasts, emergency radio, or Internet. Or, perhaps you will receive a phone call or hear a special siren. Emergency workers have been known to go door-to-door in isolated areas.
Other natural disasters, such as earthquakes, and some fires are hard to predict. It may be impossible to forewarn you of forthcoming dangers. Regions that are vulnerable to these types of crisis generally have emergency disaster centers that are equipped with disaster risk management information. Locate a center in your area and obtain survival instruction.
Depending upon the severity of the disaster, you may ask to evacuate your home. Or, you may be advised to hunker down and stay in your own home or protected area. Either way, you should be prepared. Being aware of the kinds of natural disaster that you are prone too, you will have some indication what what you can expect.
Bottom Line: By making a disaster risk assessment and getting information from your local Emergency Disaster Center, you will reduce your natural disaster risks substantially. Protect yourself and your family by becoming educated about your community’s particular disaster risk.