Wednesday, March 25, 2015
Wednesday, March 18, 2015
Have you ever noticed a unique sound and vibration coming from your cell phone? You may have received a Wireless Emergency Alert (WEA) - a nationwide emergency alert system notifying you of a pending emergency in your area. These messages provide information about extreme weather warnings, local emergencies, AMBER Alerts™, and Presidential Alerts during a national emergency.
WEAs look like a text message and show the type and time of the alert, any action you should take, and the agency issuing the alert. If you receive a WEA, follow any directions advised by the message and seek additional information from local media or authorities.
WEAs are sent by authorized government agencies through your mobile carrier. Government partners include local and state public safety agencies, FEMA, the Federal Communications Commission, the Department of Homeland Security, and the National Weather Service.
Posted by Lloyd Colston at 1:37 PM
Wednesday, March 11, 2015
Loss of power can jeopardize the safety of the food stored in your home refrigerator or freezer. In the event of a blackout, do you know how to determine if your food is safe to eat? The U.S. Department of Agriculture(USDA) offers tips to minimize the potential loss of food and lower the risk of foodborne illness.
Before a blackout:
- Gather an emergency supply of shelf-stable food, packaged foods, boxed or canned milk, bottle water, and canned goods;
- Have coolers and frozen gel packs on hand to keep refrigerated food cold if the power goes out longer than four hours; and
- Keep freezer items close together—this helps the food stay cold longer.
Bacteria in food grow rapidly at temperatures between 40 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit. The USDA instructs setting your refrigerator at or below 40 degrees Fahrenheit. If the power is out for less than four hours and the refrigerator door is kept closed, your food should be safe.
Following a blackout:
- Discard any perishable food items such as meat, poultry, fish, eggs, and leftovers that have been exposed to temperatures above 40 degrees Fahrenheit for two hours or more;
- Use a food thermometer to test the temperature of food – never taste it! You can’t rely on appearance and odor to determine whether food is safe; and
- Discard any items in the refrigerator that have come into contact with raw meat, seafood, or poultry juices.
Power outages can occur anywhere at any time of the year. Make sure you and your family are prepared and know what to do to avoid getting sick.
Posted by Lloyd Colston at 1:38 PM
Wednesday, March 04, 2015
Due to the recent winter storms several communities across the county have experienced dangerous utility outages. Beyond the initial inconvenience, loss of electricity, gas or water can be life threatening. It is critical to know how you and your family can prepare and stay safe in the event of a utility outage.
Use FEMA’s free, online activity module, “Going Off Grid: Utility Outages,” to reference simple steps to get prepared for an outage. Some utility outagechecklist items include:
- Document important phone numbers and vital power company information;
- Locate and label your utility shutoffs; and
- Have your disaster kit ready and stocked.
The “Going Off Grid: Utility Outages” activity module is part of FEMA’s “Preparedness Activities for Communities Everywhere” tools, which educate individuals about easy ways to become prepared for all types of hazards. The tools are designed for anyone to use in coordination with local emergency preparedness partners to help better prepare for emergencies.
Posted by Lloyd Colston at 1:36 PM
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