Earthquake Preparedness Step 6: Help Your Neighbors Get Prepared

Kim from Tulsa, OK recently shared her experience with me about living through an ice storm that downed trees, trapping her neighborhood from emergency help for three days.  Kim’s neighbors had literally no emergency supplies set aside.  Kim, having prepared her family already, was in a position to help.
But imagine if disaster hit your neighborhood, and no one had emergency supplies of food, water, blankets or battery radios to share.  During a disaster your neighbors emergencies can become your own emergencies, especially if you have elderly residents or small children on your block.   That’s why the 6th step in the 6-Step Earthquake Preparedness Series, to help your neighborhood get prepared is so important.
There are some really easy ways to help prepare your neighbors:

  • Schedule your local emergency management official or Red Cross chapter representative to come out to your neighborhood and give a talk about preparing for disasters.  It’s free, and a great way to introduce the topic to your neighbors.
  • Ask your local utility company representatives to come out to show your neighbors how to turn off their water, gas, and electricity in the event of an emergency.
  • Invite the neighbors over for a planning session.  Identify which neighbors have which tools (chainsaws to clear downed trees for example) and identify which neighbors have special needs or disabilities that will addressing in an emergency.
  • Ready to take on your block?  Use the Map Your Neighborhood Booklet to identify emergency contacts for your neighbors, create emergency maps for your neighborhood, decide upon a community gathering site, a care center and more.  Get the program by downloading the Map Your Neighborhood Booklet (this copy is from the City of Gresham website, your local emergency management office can get you set up with hard copies as well).
  • Sign up for your local CERT training and ask your neighbors to take the course with you.  You can find the contact information for your local CERT by visiting the Citizen Corps website.
  • Share our blog address ( for the six step series.  You’ve been following the six steps and there is no better inspiration that someone who has already gone through the process.

Emergency preparedness is a shared responsibility between individuals, families, corporations, neighborhoods and governments.  I hope by following these six steps to earthquake preparedness you’ve not only become prepared, but have learned a lot.  I’d love to hear your story about how you succeeded in preparing your family and neighborhood.  Please let me know how it works out for you and your family by leaving a comment or sending an email.

Did you miss the first five steps?  Catch up here:

Ready to purchase your emergency kit for your family?  Check out our entire line of affordable emergency kits.  They are fast, easy and complete.

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