Prepared Starts With P

— Written By

North Carolina Army National Guardsmen (NCNG) and local emergency services assist with the evacuation efforts in Fayetteville, N.C., on Friday, Oct. 08, 2016. Heavy rains caused by Hurricane Matthew have led to flooding as high as five feet in some areas. U.S. Army National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Jonathan Shaw, 382nd Public Affairs Detachment/Released.

The beginning of hurricane season is just around the corner. Although we are still recovering from the effects of Hurricane Matthew, you need to consider now what to do if disaster strikes again.

There are a number of items to keep in mind as make a list of the things you would need or want to take with you if you had to leave your home quickly. Store the basic emergency supplies in a “Go Bag” or other container.

As a guide, consider the Five Ps of Evacuation:

People:  make sure you have a meeting place and communication system for your immediate family, and for those out of town who may be trying to reach you. Have a plan for your pet (s).

Prescriptions: Have a supply of all of your daily prescriptions, with their dosages, preferably in their original containers. If you need a breathing machine, eyeglasses, insulin syringes or other medically related equipment, makes sure you can grab it quickly.

Papers: Important papers like insurance documents, passports, car titles, deeds, and licenses. Keep a copy of each in your “Go Bag” or make electronic copies and keep them on a USB drive.

Personal needs: have enough clothing, food, water and hygiene for 5-7 days. This includes diapers, cash, and phone chargers. Remember to include specialized items for people with disabilities and others with access and functional needs, such as older adults, children, and those with Limited English Proficiency. For people with special needs or disabilities include walkers, canes, or wheelchair.

Priceless items: pictures, mementos, jewelry, and other items that cannot be replaced should be easy to grab.

For more information about preparing for disaster contact Jayne McBurney, Area Extension Agent, Family & Consumer Sciences, at the Nash County Cooperative Extension Service, 919-459-1405 or by email, jayne_mcburney@ncsu.edu.