What is a disaster?

An occurrence causing widespread destruction and distress; a catastrophe
A grave misfortune
Informal – a total failure
Disaster = Needs > Resources

What to expect after a disaster?

Delayed response from first responders
No utilities
No cell phone service
Collapsed buildings, fires, road blockages
Physical and mental trauma

Preparing Makes Sense

The likelihood that you and your family will survive a house fire depends as much on having a working smoke detector and an exit strategy, as on a well-trained fire department. The same is true for surviving a terrorist attack or disaster. We must have the tools and plans in place to make it on our own, at least for a period of time, no matter where we are when a disaster strikes. Just like having a working smoke detector, preparing for the unexpected makes sense. Click here to learn how to plan ahead.

Be prepared at home/work

Disaster can strike quickly and without warning. It can force you to evacuate your neighborhood or confine you to your home. What would you do if basic services–water, gas, electricity or telephones–were cut off? Local officials and relief workers will be on the scene after a disaster, but they cannot reach everyone right away. Where will your family be when disaster strikes? They could be anywhere–at work, at school or in the car. How will you find each other? Will you know if your children are safe?

Families can and do cope with disaster by preparing in advance and working together as a team. Follow the steps listed here and on this website. Knowing what to do is your responsibility and your best protection.

Types of Disasters