Disasters can occur anyplace at any time. The earthquake and resulting tsunami recently experienced by Japan serves as a not-so-gentle reminder of the importance of personal preparedness. Individuals and families should be prepared to meet their own needs without assistance for a minimum of three days.
Lynette Ranney Black, 4-H Youth Development Faculty in The Dalles provides these tips for preparing for a catastrophic disaster:
- Develop a survival kit with food, water, and personal items needed to live without support of your home, neighbors or stores. Several resources listing suggested items to be included are available through FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency), American Red Cross and EDEN (Extension Disaster Education Network).
- Make a plan with your family or household members, determine what to do if you need to evacuate and where to meet and who to contact in case you are separated during an emergency. It doesn’t hurt to practice these scenarios.
- Utilize tools like the American Red Cross Emergency Contact Cards.
- Learn first-aid skills, especially skills needed when first responders will be delayed. For example, classes such as Wilderness First Aid are offered through OSU, Dixon or the Oregon Pacific Chapter of the American Red Cross.
- Learn stress management techniques, familiarize yourself with typical mental responses to trauma, and learn ways to help yourself and others cope with the trauma.
- Stay healthy both physically and mentally by getting enough sleep, eating well and enjoying one’s life.
- Protect your assets with appropriate insurances and financial plans.
For information about tsunamis and other disasters visit the OSU Extension website on Natural Disasters
Also, if you’d like to be more involved in Public Health around campus check out Public Health Club.