Now is the time for you to create or update your preparedness plans! Avoid the craze of standing in supermarket lines to get bottled water and the anxiety of last minute plans for you and your family members. The Hawaii Red Cross is here for you and your loved ones by providing services and information to ensure that you can be prepared for any natural disaster that comes your way. Here are three tips for you to get ready for this year’s hurricane season.
Get a Kit
• Have seven days’ worth of supplies at home so you can take shelter there, or place your supplies in a compact portable container, in case you need to vacate to a shelter. You can download a list of Hurricane Evacuation Shelters here. Remember to listen to the radio during an emergency to see which sites are open!
• Here are a few items to include in your Disaster Emergency Kit:
o Water (one gallon/per person/per day for seven days)
o Non-perishable foods (seven days)
o Crank Flashlight Radio (with cell phone charging adapter!)
o First Aid Kit
To view a more detailed list of supplies to include in your Disaster Emergency Kit, please visit our website.
Make a Plan
• As a family, decide on an evacuation location and the route you’ll be taking to get there. We recommend that you and your family run practice evacuations at least twice a year and test out alternate routes in case your primary one is closed. If a member of your family needs special accommodations, plan ahead to figure out who can help and what they can do. If you have pets, you’ll need to include them in your evacuation plan as well.
• If you and your family are separated from each other, create a plan that designates two different places to meet:
1) Near your home
2) Somewhere outside your neighborhood, in case you can’t return home or need to evacuate
• It is important to identify responsibilities for each person ahead of time, and work together as a team during any emergency.
• Learn about the different disasters or emergencies that may occur. Hawaii is at risk for many hazards including hurricanes, tsunami, flooding, earthquakes, landslides, tornados and volcanic eruptions.
• Stay informed by authorities during a disaster. Local emergency agencies broadcast through radio and TV stations, as well as online and on social media. Local Civil Defense agencies have emergency alert e-mail and text services available to the public.
• Make sure that at least one member of your household is trained in First Aid and CPR, and knows how to use an AED. You can register for any of these training classes at redcross.org/takeaclass.
• Download our free Emergency App! This “all-inclusive” app lets you monitor more than 35 different severe weather and emergency alerts, to help keep you and your loved ones safe. Get information on what to do before, during and after a disaster right in the palm of your hand! Text ‘GETEMERGENCY’ to 90999, or search “Red Cross Emergency” in the Apple App Store or Google Play Store.
By following these three simple tips, you and your family can maintain a sense of safety and peace of mind during hurricane season, or any other emergency or natural disaster. Got to redcross.org/Hawaii for more information.
Coralie Chun Matayoshi has been the CEO of the American Red Cross, Hawaii State Chapter since 2003. She is an attorney who previously served as Executive Director of the Hawaii State Bar Association for 13 years. She is a graduate of Punahou School and earned a political science degree, magna cum laude, from the University of California, Berkeley, and juris doctor degree from Hastings College of the Law. She currently serves on the University of Hawaii Board of Regents.