Some preparedness tips from Herriman’s Emergency Preparedness fair
Jan 14, 2020 09:04AM
By Kirk Bradford
Curtis Watkins explains a grant that allows the SLCEM trainers to train a family, ward, business or any other establishment for free on how to deal with a variety of situations. (Kirk Bradford/City Journals)
By Kirk Bradford | [email protected]
In November, the City Journals spent time training with Salt Lake County Emergency Management trainers Kathy Allen and Curtis Watkins. The three separate trainings consisted of the Herriman Emergency Preparedness Fair and training with Salt Lake City library staff on trauma and wound care. The third portion of the training called Tactical Emergency Care was complete with the Unified Police Officers at the Sheriff’s Office.
The event in Herriman covered a variety of topics such as how food storage and other emergency supplies can be important resources for families.
Water, food, and the clothing and accessories needed to maintain a healthy body temperature and provide protection against the elements are the most important to ensure you have. Also, keep in mind that many people require certain prescription medications daily to stay healthy.
The ideal kit contains two types of separate kits full of materials. One, you will have set up for a situation where you are required to stay in your home. The second kit should be much smaller, lightweight and designed separately if you or your family are forced to evacuate possible even in a hurry. Both kits should include enough supplies to take care of your needs for at least a minimum of three days, but a week is even better because it provides security as well as the ability to help others if you can.
Traveling workers and/or students should put together a small kit at their place of work or school. For those who spend much time driving, keeping a kit in the trunk just like you should have a winter kit here in Utah is ideal. If you already have some kits at home, a third one in your vehicle can absolutely save your life in the wrong situation.
When preparing for a possible emergency situation, it's best to think first about the basics that aid in survival. Having some fresh water, food, clean air and warmth are critical. Next is thinking about the basic tools such as a set of matches, a waterproof light, flashlight, knife and a whistle. Hope for the best but plan for the worst.
Be Ready Utah recommends the following lists.
Recommended items to include in a basic emergency supply kit:
- Water, 1 gallon of water per person per day for at least three days for drinking and sanitation
- Food: at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food
- Battery-powered or hand-cranked radio and a NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert and extra batteries for both—one that allows you to plug and charge your cell phone is great option as well.
- Flashlight and extra batteries
- First aid kit
- Whistle to signal for help
- Dust mask to help filter contaminated air and plastic sheeting and duct tape to shelter-in-place
- Moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties for personal sanitation
- Small tool kit or at least some wrenches or pliers to turn off utilities
- Can opener for food (if kit contains canned food)
- Local maps and an evacuation plan for your area.
Additional items to consider adding to an emergency supply kit:
- Prescription medications and glasses
- Infant formula and diapers
- Pet food and extra water for your pet
- Important family documents such as copies of insurance policies, identification, picture of each family member and bank account records in a waterproof, portable container
- Cash or traveler's checks and change
- Emergency reference material such as a first aid book or information.
- Sleeping bag or warm blanket for each person; consider additional bedding if you live in a cold-weather climate
- Complete change of clothing including a long-sleeved shirt, long pants and sturdy shoes; consider additional clothing if you live in a cold-weather climate
- Household chlorine bleach and medicine dropper - When diluted nine parts water to one part bleach, bleach can be used as a disinfectant. Or in an emergency, you can use it to treat water by using 16 drops of regular household liquid bleach per gallon of water. Do not use scented, color safe or bleaches with added cleaners.
- Fire extinguisher
- Matches in a waterproof container
- Feminine supplies and personal hygiene items
- Mess kits, paper cups, plates and plastic utensils, paper towels
- Paper and pencil
- Books, games, puzzles or other activities for children
- Extra containers of gasoline for your vehicle—at least 5 gallons
Visit www.utah.gov/beready/ to learn more information for your family and specific situation to prepare the ideal safety kit.
The basics of Trauma and wound care were touched on by the SLCEM trainers; however, the two-hour training was the most recommended source of knowledge to safely treat and apply medical in a disaster.