Are you ready for a big storm?
How long can you hold out in a power outage?
Have you got enough food in your home?
These are the questions you should be asking yourself, says the Takoma Park Emergency Preparedness Committee.
And you should be asking them right now.
“Winter is here,” warns committee co-chair Jennifer Kurtinitis, “which means freezing temperatures, snow, and ice are just around the corner.”
She urges residents to take this check-list to heart:
Have an emergency kit in your vehicle – if a winter storm develops suddenly, have supplies on hand in case you’re stranded in your vehicle. (Ready.gov/build-a-kit has tips to get you started)
Take precautions for power outages – winter storms often cause power outages, so be sure your family and home take steps to sustain yourselves for at least 72 hours.
Keep enough food on hand – prepare 3 days worth of non-perishable, nutritious food that requires little or no water and cooking to prepare. Don’t forget to store a manual can opener!
Limit travel during a storm – only venture out on the roads if it’s absolutely necessary
The committee is not just concerned with the next Snowpocalypse. They wonder if the next Hurricane Sandy hits Takoma Park whether residents and city services are ready for the aftermath.
Readers interested in knowing how Takoma Park and Montgomery County prepare for and respond to disasters are urged to join the committee, or at least attend a holiday get-together/new member recruitment event on Thursday, Jan. 24, 7:30 p.m. in the Hydrangea room of the Takoma Park Community Center. Attendees can meet committee members, learn about preparedness, and consider joining the Committee or find out other ways you can help your community prepare for emergencies.
The city, to encourage participation on the Committee, the EPC, has changed its meeting time. Beginning in January, the EPC will meet every other month on the fourth Thursday at 7:30 p.m. On alternate months, beginning in February, the Committee will meet the fourth Thursday at 8:30 a.m.