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This infographic will get you started on the path to creating a hurricane plan for your family.
Below are some useful reference and informational material that will assist you in preparing for a natural or man made threat, the unexpected and the unimaginable.
An important facet to Family safety is having a plan and being prepared in case an emergency strikes. It is important so you can increase your personal sense of security and peace of mind and to know you will be ready in case of an emergency.
Below are some useful reference and informational material that will assist you in preparing an Emergency Plan. Have an out-of-state friend as a family contact, so all your family members have a single point of contact. Post emergency telephone numbers by your phones and make sure your children know how and when to call 911.
Check your insurance coverage – flood damage is not usually covered by homeowners insurance. Based on interviews with officials across city and state governments as well as first responders on the ground, our research reveals that New York City’s Mayor Bloomberg marginalized the city’s Office of Emergency Management (OEM) from the first moments of the storm’s arrival, and relocated city emergency functions to the mayor’s office. The story of why OEM was sidelined is complex, with institutional structure, political calculations, and personality clashes all playing a role. To refer to disaster plans as fantasy documents is not to impute hidden motives to the planners who create them. Indeed, NYC’s emergency response suggests that, just as OEM’s disaster plans are fantasy documents, OEM itself is a fantasy institution. Similarly, one councilman in a hard-hit Brooklyn neighbourhood said his actions as a first responder were most effective when he went “off the grid” and stopped communicating with a chaotic City Hall in the days after the storm.
The regulatory and jurisdictional challenges that motivate disaster planning are very real.
There is a fundamental difference between the need for systemic change and action across jurisdictions and at massive scales, and the immediate coordination required to meet acute needs during disaster events.
Top image: The complexity of disaster planning, as illustrated in the organizational chart for the Regional Catastrophic Planning Team. Click the image to download a pdf that includes links to important websites about emergency preparedness at Tulane University. When an emergency strikes, knowing what to do can save time, property and most of all, lives.

A matter of your family's safety.Click here for factors you should consider in making your decision. In certain circumstances the safest areas may not be your home but somewhere else in your community. Those of us who reside in the Northeast are now in the throes of trying to pick up the pieces of our lives and our homes.
Between municipal, state, and federal level agencies, the amount of planning for potential disasters is enormous. Fantasy documents are designed to shore up public trust in technocratic methods of governance, and to quell public and institutional anxiety by appearing to control the uncontrollable, predict the unpredictable, and turn uncertainty into calculated risk.
Fantasy documents are not necessarily “noble lies” or stories told by rulers to maintain social order (Strauss 1978). Given pre-existing power relations and conflicting interests, OEMs, as coordinating bodies with very little direct authority over the subject areas they are responsible for, cannot solve the problems they are tasked with solving, nor can the plans they produce.
Historically, effective impromptu responses include the resident-initiated evacuation of Three Mile Island in 1979.
Multiple respondents reported that officials who preemptively took charge were generally not challenged regardless of their position in the government hierarchy, and where a designated leader failed to lead effectively, others stepped in. Many first responders, including those in Occupy Sandy, are calling for flexible guidelines and best practices for the inevitable “next time.” How can we be more reflexive and deliberate about the roles that plans—whether fantasy or ad hoc, flexible or rigid—play in emergency mitigation and adaptation?
In the first case, plans are foundational, and in the second case, they may well be fantasies. The three main priorities to emergency preparedness are getting an emergency preparedness kit, making a plan, and being informed. Or click on the University of Missouri Extension which also has an excellent site where you can prepare and download a custom plan for your family. Hurricane Sandy hit New Jersey with such strength and force that she ripped up and knocked down almost everything that stood in her path. But during Hurricane Sandy, plans that took several years and millions of dollars to produce were thrown out almost immediately. New York City participates in various regional collaborative efforts, including the Regional Catastrophic Planning Team (RCPT) that brings together emergency managers from New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and Pennsylvania. Fantasy documents and fantasy institutions are of a piece, and they work together to create the illusion of planning and control. Likewise, during Hurricane Sandy, the largest relief effort in New York City’s history was mainly coordinated by activist, religious, and community based groups without any previous emergency aid experience, and certainly without any disaster plans.

The challenge is to ensure that long-term plans and institutions do not become fantasies as well. The famed Atlantic City Boardwalk, a popular tourist attraction since the mid 1800s, no longer exists as we know it. Long term recovery—a task that requires external resources to be channeled to the devastated locale and requires coordinated action over multi-year time-scales and across jurisdictions—is well suited to government planning. New York City’s downtown area still remains in the dark after the Hudson River came pouring into her streets, homes and shops, into the Lincoln Tunnel and into Ground Zero. Crucially, this includes climate change mitigation, which can certainly be classified as disaster planning in the twenty-first century. This will be appreciated by CERT search and rescue personnel who want to account for every neighborhood resident. For those of us who have to start over completely from scratch the task is daunting and arduous. It is not always much easier for the rest of us.Most of us know what to do to prepare for a storm and yet most of us are not quite sure what to do once the storm has hit and passed us.
The following is information I have gathered from FEMA, our Federal Emergency Management Agency.
Regardless of where you live, these tips are valuable and can be lifesaving!Collect this ideaUntil the storm has passed continue listening to a weather station or the local news for the latest updates.It may seem antiquated but listening to a battery operated radio is a must. The sooner you apply for help, the sooner you can start to rebuild.Collect this ideaUse battery-powered flashlights in the dark. Use your cell phone to keep up to date with updates from media and your local power company. Deadly levels of carbon monoxide can quickly build up in these areas and can linger for hours, even after the generator has shut off.As I write this, my home and many others remain in the dark. We at Freshome extend our thoughts, prayers  and well-wishes to all those whose lives and homes have been touched by the devastation caused by Sandy, one of the worst hurricanes in American history.
The downstairs of the house is still fairly sound, but everything has been smoke damaged and the house needs to be completely stripped. If you can’t remove the water and dry the area quickly, consider calling a water extraction company.

Hurricane and emergency preparedness equipment
Emergency alert system text message

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