CodeRed Emergency Alerts

Elbert County Emergency Services keeps residents and businesses informed of emergencies and other time-sensitive information through CodeRED, a high-speed emergency notification solution provided by Emergency Communications Network. Elbert County Emergency Services uses CodeRED to quickly and effectively keep the community informed of time sensitive information that may impact the entire city/county, or specific neighborhoods. To see how the CodeRED system works, click here.

Elbert County Emergency Services will use the CodeRED system to keep you informed of emergency information that may impact your safety by sending you telephone calls, text messages and emails. Messages may regard evacuations, police activity, missing children, boil water notices or other information that you are asked to take immediate action or precautions for.

As an extra tool to keep our community safe, Elbert County Emergency Services also provides CodeRED Weather Warning, which sends automatic phone calls, emails and text messages to residents and businesses in the direct path of a severe thunderstorm, tornado or flash flood. During enrollment, you may select the types of warnings you would like to receive. Weather Warnings are only delivered to those residents and businesses that enroll, so please make sure you are in the database. Make sure to tell family, friends and co-workers who live in Elbert County about this free service and encourage them to enroll.

Click here to sign up for CodeRED emergency notifications

Please note: If you are unsure of whether your contact information is in the Elbert County CodeRED emergency database, or you have recently moved or changed your telephone number, it is important to visit the enrollment page above to add or update your information. Do not assume you are automatically enrolled to receive notifications.

Identifying Notifications

You will know the call is from Elbert County Emergency Services when you see the following Caller IDs. Please make sure to add these telephone numbers to your phone’s contacts. If you would like to hear the last message delivered to your phone, simply dial the number back.

Emergency Comm 866-419-5000

ECN Community 855-969-4636

Emergency Comm Weather Alert 800-566-9780

Do you have a smartphone? Make sure to download the CodeRED Mobile Alert app to receive free emergency, general and missing person notifications from Elbert County Emergency Services directly on your smartphone. As you travel to other communities that also use the CodeRED service and there is an active warning that affects your current location, the app will also notify you.

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Praise and Preparedness

praise_logo_grn

If Disaster Strikes, Will Your House of Worship Be Ready?

 

In recent years, Georgia has been hit by severe storms, extreme heat, a crippling freeze, deadly tornadoes and dangerous wildfires – resulting in the loss of property and even human life.  Unfortunately, there are still many Georgians who are not prepared for the next disaster.

In times of crisis, many people look to faith-based organizations for guidance and support. As part of Praise & Preparedness – a new initiative launched by the Georgia Emergency Management Agency/Homeland Security (GEMA) in partnership with your local emergency management agency – faith-based organizations statewide are encouraging their members to prepare before disaster strikes.

In addition, congregations often play an integral role in local readiness and recovery, providing shelter and supplies before and after disasters. The Praise & Preparedness Partnership Program offers three ways to build upon these traditional roles.

  • Facility Safety: Conduct a facility safety assessment and complete or update theemergency plan for all the congregational buildings.
  • Congregant Safety: Encourage members of the congregation to develop familyemergency plans.
  • Expanded Ministries: Explore new opportunities for the congregation to becomeinvolved in community emergency disaster relief efforts, feeding and shelteringprograms.

We know that the next emergency is coming. We just don’t know when or what kind it will be, so take simple steps now to protect yourself and your loved ones. For more preparedness tools, tips and resources, visit GEMA’s Ready Georgia campaign at www.ready.ga.gov or download GEMA’s free Ready Georgia mobile app for iPhone and Android for information on the go.   For more information on specific risks in your community, contact your local emergency management agency.

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Flood Safety

Floods, Flash Floods Can Happen Anytime, Anywhere

Last year, Georgia experienced a record-setting wet year. It was the fifth wettest year in Atlanta, the sixth wettest year in Columbus, and the ninth wettest year ever recorded in south Georgia. Meanwhile, Macon had its wettest year on record, with 72.91 inches of rain. The heavy rain caused flooding that washed away roads and bridges and damaged dozens of homes and businesses across Georgia throughout 2013.

Floods are the most common and widespread of all natural disasters, except fire. Floods can be slow or fast rising but generally develop over a period of days. Flash floods usually result from intense storms dropping large amounts of rain within a brief period. They occur with little or no warning and can reach full peak in only a few minutes. Dam failures are potentially the worst flood events. When a dam fails, an enormous quantity of water suddenly rushes downstream, destroying anything in its path.

“Neighborhoods located in low-lying areas are especially at risk for flooding. Those near bodies of water or downstream from a dam are vulnerable, too,” says Elbert County Emergency Management Agency (EMA) Director Chuck Almond.

Here is some information to help you develop a plan and be ready to act before the possibility of a flood or flash flood threatens you or your family:     

Know What to Expect

·         Know your area’s flood risk — if unsure, call your local emergency management agency office, planning and zoning department, or visit www.floodsmart.gov. 

·         If it has rained hard for several hours or rained steadily for several days, prepare for the possibility flooding. 

·         Closely monitor a local radio station, television or NOAA Weather Radio for flood information. 

 

Reduce Potential Flood Damage By

·         Avoid building or buying a home in a floodplain. Visit www.floodsmart.gov to learn about your flood risk.

·         Raising your furnace, water heater, and electric panel if they are in areas of your home that may be flooded. 

·         Consulting a professional for further information about damage reduction measures that you can implement. 

 

Floods Can Take Several Hours or Days to Develop

·         A flood WATCH means a flood is possible in your area. 

·         A flood WARNING means flooding is already occurring or will occur soon in your area. 

 

 Flash Floods Can Take Only a Few Minutes or a Few Hours to Develop 

·         A flash flood WATCH means flash flooding is possible in your area. 

·         A flash flood WARNING means a flash flood is occurring or will occur very soon. 

 

Prepare a Family Disaster Plan 

·         Check to see if you have insurance that covers flooding. If not, get flood insurance immediately. 

·         Keep insurance policies, documents, and other valuables in a safe-deposit box.

·         Identify where you could go if told to evacuate. Choose several places — a friend’s home in another town, a motel, or a shelter. 

 

Assemble a Disaster Supplies Kit Containing

·         First aid kit and essential medications. 

·         Canned food and can opener. 

·         At least three gallons of water per person. 

·         Protective clothing, rainwear, and bedding or sleeping bags.

·         Battery-powered radio, flashlight, and extra batteries. 

·         Special items for infants, elderly, or disabled family members. 

·         Written instructions for how to turn off electricity, gas and water if authorities advise you to do so. (Remember, you’ll need a professional to turn them back on.)

 

When a Flood WATCH is Issued 

·         Move your furniture and valuables to higher floors of your home. 

·         Fill your car’s gas tank, in case an evacuation notice is issued. 

 

When a Flood WARNING is Issued 

·         Closely monitor NOAA Weather Radio, local radio or television for the latest weather forecasts.

·         If told to evacuate, do so immediately! 

 

When a Flash Flood WATCH is Issued 

·          Be alert to signs of flash flooding and be ready to evacuate on a moment’s notice. 

 

 When a Flash Flood WARNING is Issued 

·         Or if you think flooding has begun, evacuate immediately. You may have only seconds to escape. Act quickly! 

·         Move to higher ground away from rivers, streams, creeks, and storm drains. Do not drive through or around barricades . . . they are there for your safety. 

·         If your car stalls in rapidly rising waters, abandon it immediately and climb to higher ground. 

To help families prepare, Ready Georgia, a statewide emergency preparedness campaign established by the Georgia Emergency Management Agency/Homeland Security offers the tools needed to make an emergency supply kit, develop a communications plan and stay informed about potential threats. Visitors to Ready Georgia’s website, www.ready.ga.gov, can create an online profile to receive a tailored plan for the entire family that includes the specific amount of supplies to put in their household Ready kits. They can also find local emergency contact information, learn about Georgia-specific disasters and read preparedness testimonials from local sports stars. Employers can use the Ready Your Business guide to create custom contingency plans and children can visit the ReadyKids page for age-appropriate information, videos and games. For preparedness on the go, families can also download Ready Georgia’s free mobile app to learn how to prepare for emergencies, create family communications plans and more.

For more information, contact Elbert County EMA at 706-283-2003 or visit these websites: www.ready.ga.gov, www.srh.noaa.gov/ffc/ or www.gema.ga.gov.

 

 

About Ready Georgia

Ready Georgia is a statewide campaign designed to educate and empower Georgians to prepare for and respond to natural disasters, pandemic outbreaks, potential terrorist attacks and other large-scale emergencies. The campaign is a project of the Georgia Emergency Management Agency (GEMA) and provides a local dimension to Ready America, a broader national campaign. Ready Georgia aims to prepare citizens for maintaining self-sufficiency for at least 72 hours following an emergency, and uses an interactive website, free mobile app, online community toolkit, broadcast and print advertising and public awareness media messaging to reach its audiences. Ready Georgia is also on Facebook and YouTube.

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Praise Preparedness Meeting

praise_logo_grnElbert County EMA in conjunction with the Georgia Emergency Management Agency held an information session designed to reach Houses of Worship in Elbert County.  Launched in January 2014, Praise & Preparedness is a statewide program from the Georgia Emergency Management Agency/Homeland Security (GEMA) that provides faith-based organizations with the tools they need to take action to prepare for a disaster. GEMA is the state agency that is responsible for emergency mitigation, preparedness, response, recovery and special events.Praise_preparedness_1

The event was held at Athens Technical College in the Auditorium of the Frank Coggins Building.  Attendees were given an overview of the Praise and Preparedness Program and also given the opportunity to ask questions of GEMA Representatives and Local EMA Director Chuck Almond.  Praise_preparedness_4More information is available at www.praise.ga.gov or you can contact the Local Emergency Management Agency at 706-283-2003.

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Lightning Safety

Beware of Lightning —

A Deadly Threat in Thunderstorms

 

Lightning is a deadly by-product of thunderstorms, which are very common in Georgia, particularly in the spring and summer. Lightning kills an average of 55 people each year throughout the United States. It occurs mostly during the warmer months of June through September. Last year, one person died as a result of lightning strikes in Georgia.

 

“Learn the basic safety rules and precautions about thunderstorms and the embedded killer called lightning. Share this knowledge with your family and friends. Don’t be caught off-guard by these storms. When outdoors, be aware of the most current local weather forecasts. Always stay alert for signs of approaching thunderstorms. Lightning is nature’s warning signal that a thunderstorm is in its most violent state and that you should seek shelter immediately,” urges Chuck Almond.

 

Before Lightning Strikes

1.    Keep an eye on the sky. Look for darkening skies, flashes of light, or increasing wind. Listen for the sound of thunder.

2.    If you can hear thunder, you are close enough to the storm to be struck by lightning. Go to safe shelter immediately.

3.    Monitor NOAA Weather Radio, commercial radio, or television for the latest weather forecasts.

 

When a Storm Approaches


1.    Find shelter in a building or car. Keep car windows closed and avoid convertibles.

2.    Telephone lines and metal pipes can conduct electricity. Unplug appliances. Avoid using the telephone or any electrical appliances. (Leaving electric lights on, however, does not increase the chances of your home being struck by lightning.)

3.    Avoid taking a bath or shower, or running water for any purpose.

4.    Turn off the air conditioner. Power surges from lightning can overload the compressor, resulting in a costly repair job.

5.    Draw blinds and shades over windows. If windows break due to objects blown by the wind, the shades will help prevent glass from shattering into your home.

 

If Caught Outside

1.    If you are in the woods, take shelter under the shorter trees.

2.    If you are boating or swimming, get to land and find shelter immediately!

 

Protecting Yourself Outside

1.    Go to a low-lying, open place away from trees, poles, or metal objects. Make sure the place you pick is not subject to flooding.

2.    Be a very small target! Squat low to the ground. Place your hands on your knees with your head between them. Make yourself the smallest target possible.

3.    Do not lie flat on the ground. This will make you a larger target!

 

After the Storm Passes

1.    Stay away from storm-damaged areas.

2.    Listen to the radio or television for information and instructions.

 

If Someone is Struck by Lightning

1.    People struck by lightning carry no electrical charge and can be handled safely.

2.    Call for help. Get someone to dial 9-1-1 or your local Emergency Medical Services (EMS) number. 

3.    The injured person has received an electrical shock and may be burned, both where they were struck and where the electricity left their body. Check for burns in both places. Being struck by lightning can also cause nervous system damage, broken bones, and loss of hearing or eyesight.

4.    Give first aid. If breathing has stopped, begin rescue breathing. If the heart has stopped beating, a trained person should give CPR. If the person has a pulse and is breathing, look and care for other possible injuries. Learn first aid and CPR by taking an American Red Cross first-aid and CPR course; call your local Red Cross chapter for class schedules and fees.

To help families prepare, Ready Georgia, a statewide emergency preparedness campaign established by the Georgia Emergency Management Agency/Homeland Security offers the tools needed to make an emergency supply kit, develop a communications plan and stay informed about potential threats. Visitors to Ready Georgia’s website, www.ready.ga.gov, can create an online profile to receive a tailored plan for the entire family that includes the specific amount of supplies to put in their household Ready kits. They can also find local emergency contact information, learn about Georgia-specific disasters and read preparedness testimonials from local sports stars. Employers can use the Ready Your Business guide to create custom contingency plans and children can visit the ReadyKids page for age-appropriate information, videos and games. For preparedness on the go, families can also download Ready Georgia’s free mobile app to learn how to prepare for emergencies, create family communications plans and more.

For more information, contact Elbert County EMA at 706-283-2003 or visit these websites: www.ready.ga.gov, www.srh.noaa.gov/ffc/ or www.gema.ga.gov.

 

 

 

About Ready Georgia

Ready Georgia is a statewide campaign designed to educate and empower Georgians to prepare for and respond to natural disasters, pandemic outbreaks, potential terrorist attacks and other large-scale emergencies. The campaign is a project of the Georgia Emergency Management Agency (GEMA) and provides a local dimension to Ready America, a broader national campaign. Ready Georgia aims to prepare citizens for maintaining self-sufficiency for at least 72 hours following an emergency, and uses an interactive website, free mobile app, online community toolkit, broadcast and print advertising and public awareness media messaging to reach its audiences. Ready Georgia is also on Facebook and YouTube.

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Tornado Preparedness

Tornado Preparedness Requires a Plan

 

According to the National Weather Service (NWS), tornadoes are the No. 1 severe weather-related killer in Georgia. Last January, severe storms spawned a powerful EF-3 tornado, which tore across Bartow, Fannin, Gilmer and Gordon counties, killing one man and damaging hundreds of homes and businesses. Less than two months later, on March 18, 2013, EF-1 and 2 tornadoes were confirmed in Burke, Meriwether and Pike counties. One person was killed in these storms.

Tornadoes are violently rotating columns of air extending from a thunderstorm to the ground. Tornadoes can vary in shape, size and intensity. Most tornadoes are weak, lasting a few minutes and producing winds of less than 100 mph. However, a few tornadoes are strong or even violent. These tornadoes last from 20 minutes to more than an hour and can produce wind speeds higher than 166 mph.

“The best thing to do to protect yourself and your family is to have a plan of action before a threatening tornado develops,” said Elbert County Emergency Management Agency (EMA) Director Chuck Almond.

Prepare a Home Tornado Plan

  • Pick a place where family members could gather if a tornado is headed your way. It could be your basement or, if there is no basement, a windowless center hallway, bathroom or closet on the lowest floor. Keep this place uncluttered.
  • If you are in a high-rise building, you may not have enough time to go to the lowest floor. Pick a place in a hallway in the center of the building.

Assemble a Disaster Supplies Kit Containing

  • First aid kit and essential medications.
  • Canned food and can opener.
  • At least three gallons of water per person per day.
  • Protective clothing, bedding or sleeping bags.
  • Battery-powered radio, flashlight, and extra batteries.
  • Special items for infant, elderly or disabled family members.
  • Written instructions on how to turn off electricity, gas, and water if authorities advise you to do so. (Remember, you’ll need a professional to restore natural gas service.)

Stay Tuned for Storm Warnings

  • Listen to NOAA Weather Radio, local radio and television stations, or download the Ready Georgia app for updated storm information.
  • Know what a tornado WATCH and WARNING means:
    • A tornado WATCH means a tornado is possible in your area.
    • A tornado WARNING means a tornado has been sighted and may be headed for your area. Go to safety immediately.

 

 

  • Tornado WATCHES and WARNINGS are issued by the National Weather Service.

When a Tornado WATCH is Issued

  • Listen to NOAA Weather Radio, local radio and television stations, or download the Ready Georgia app for further updates.
  • Be alert to changing weather conditions. Blowing debris or the sound of an approaching tornado may alert you. Many people say it sounds like a freight train.

When a Tornado WARNING is Issued

  • If you are inside, go to the safe place you picked to protect yourself from glass and other flying objects. The tornado may be approaching your area.
  • If you are outside, hurry to the basement of a nearby sturdy building. As a last resort, lie flat in a ditch or low-lying area.
  • If you are in a car or mobile home, get out immediately and head for safety.

After the Tornado Passes

  • Watch out for fallen power lines and stay out of the damaged area.
  • Listen to the radio for information and instructions.
  • Use a flashlight to inspect your home for damage.
  • Do not use candles at any time.

To help families prepare, Ready Georgia, a statewide emergency preparedness campaign established by the Georgia Emergency Management Agency/Homeland Security offers the tools needed to make an emergency supply kit, develop a communications plan and stay informed about potential threats. Visitors to Ready Georgia’s website, www.ready.ga.gov, can create an online profile to receive a tailored plan for the entire family that includes the specific amount of supplies to put in their household Ready kits. They can also find local emergency contact information, learn about Georgia-specific disasters and read preparedness testimonials from local sports stars. Employers can use the Ready Your Business guide to create custom contingency plans and children can visit the ReadyKids page for age-appropriate information, videos and games. For preparedness on the go, families can also download Ready Georgia’s free mobile app to learn how to prepare for emergencies, create family communications plans and more.

For more information, contact Elbert County EMA at 706-283-2003 or visit these websites: www.ready.ga.gov, www.srh.noaa.gov/ffc/ or www.gema.ga.gov.

 

 

About Ready Georgia

Ready Georgia is a statewide campaign designed to educate and empower Georgians to prepare for and respond to natural disasters, pandemic outbreaks, potential terrorist attacks and other large-scale emergencies. The campaign is a project of the Georgia Emergency Management Agency (GEMA) and provides a local dimension to Ready America, a broader national campaign. Ready Georgia aims to prepare citizens for maintaining self-sufficiency for at least 72 hours following an emergency, and uses an interactive website, free mobile app, online community toolkit, broadcast and print advertising and public awareness media messaging to reach its audiences. Ready Georgia is also on Facebook and YouTube.

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Thunderstorm Safety

Severe Weather Awareness Week:
Thunderstorm Safety Tips

 

You may be tempted to ignore thunderstorms because they are extremely common in Georgia and affect relatively small areas when compared with hurricanes and winter storms. Despite their small size, however, all thunderstorms are dangerous because they can produce strong winds, lightning, tornadoes, hail and flash flooding. The typical thunderstorm is 15 miles in diameter and lasts an average of 30 minutes.

“Straight-line winds can exceed speeds of 125 mph and produce damage similar to a tornado,” says Elbert County Emergency Management Agency (EMA) Director Chuck Almond.

According to the National Weather Service, on average, we can expect 45 to 55 days with thunderstorms each year in Georgia. Approximately 10 percent of all thunderstorms that occur in the U.S. are classified as severe. The biggest threat from severe thunderstorms is damaging straight-line winds and large hail. They occur in every month of the year, but are most common in the spring and summer months, peaking in July.

Here is some information to help you recognize severe weather, develop a plan, and be ready to act when threatening weather approaches:      

To prepare for a thunderstorm, you should do the following:

·         Remove dead or rotting trees and branches that could fall and cause injury or damage during a severe thunderstorm.

  • Remember the 30/30 lightning safety rule: Go indoors if, after seeing lightning, you cannot count to 30 before hearing thunder. Stay indoors for 30 minutes after hearing the last clap of thunder.

What you should do if a thunderstorm is likely in your area:

  • Postpone outdoor activities.
  • Get inside a home, building, or hard top automobile (not a convertible). Although you may be injured if lightning strikes your car, you are much safer there than outside.
  • Remember, rubber-soled shoes and rubber tires provide no protection from lightning. However, the steel frame of a hard-topped vehicle provides increased protection if you are not touching metal.
  • Secure outdoor objects that could blow away or cause damage.
  • Shutter windows and secure outside doors. If shutters are not available, close window blinds, shades, or curtains.
  • Avoid showering or bathing. Plumbing and bathroom fixtures can conduct electricity.
  • Use a corded telephone only for emergencies. Cordless and cellular telephones are safe to use.
  • Unplug appliances and other electrical items such as computers and turn off air conditioners. Power surges from lightning can cause serious damage.
  • Use your battery-operated NOAA Weather Radio for updates from local officials.

Avoid the following:

  • Natural lightning rods such as a tall, isolated tree in an open area.
  • Hilltops, open fields, the beach, or a boat on the water.
  • Isolated sheds or other small structures in open areas.
  • Anything metal—tractors, farm equipment, motorcycles, golf carts, golf clubs, and bicycles.

To help families prepare, Ready Georgia, a statewide emergency preparedness campaign established by the Georgia Emergency Management Agency/Homeland Security offers the tools needed to make an emergency supply kit, develop a communications plan and stay informed about potential threats. Visitors to Ready Georgia’s website, www.ready.ga.gov, can create an online profile to receive a tailored plan for the entire family that includes the specific amount of supplies to put in their household Ready kits. They can also find local emergency contact information, learn about Georgia-specific disasters and read preparedness testimonials from local sports stars. Employers can use the Ready Your Business guide to create custom contingency plans and children can visit the ReadyKids page for age-appropriate information, videos and games. For preparedness on the go, families can also download Ready Georgia’s free mobile app to learn how to prepare for emergencies, create family communications plans and more.

For more information, contact Elbert County EMA at 706-283-2003 or visit these websites: www.ready.ga.gov, www.srh.noaa.gov/ffc/ or www.gema.ga.gov.

 

 

About Ready Georgia

Ready Georgia is a statewide campaign designed to educate and empower Georgians to prepare for and respond to natural disasters, pandemic outbreaks, potential terrorist attacks and other large-scale emergencies. The campaign is a project of the Georgia Emergency Management Agency (GEMA) and provides a local dimension to Ready America, a broader national campaign. Ready Georgia aims to prepare citizens for maintaining self-sufficiency for at least 72 hours following an emergency, and uses an interactive website, free mobile app, online community toolkit, broadcast and print advertising and public awareness media messaging to reach its audiences. Ready Georgia is also on Facebook and YouTube.

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Severe Weather Awareness Week

NEWS RELEASE

Severe Weather Awareness Week Begins Feb. 3 with ‘Family Preparedness/NOAA Weather Radio Day’

The Elbert County Emergency Management Agency (EMA) supports the Georgia Emergency Management Agency/Homeland Security (GEMA) and the National Weather Service in observingFebruary 3 to 7, 2014, as Severe Weather Awareness Week. This is an excellent time for families to learn emergency preparedness and response procedures for all types of severe weather. A different topic will be highlighted each day:

February 3 Monday Family Preparedness/NOAA Weather Radio Day
February 4 Tuesday Thunderstorm Safety
February 5 Wednesday Tornado Safety (Statewide Tornado Drill)
February 6 Thursday Lightning Safety
February 7 Friday Flooding (Alternate Drill Day)

“Family Preparedness Day is a time for every family to plan and rehearse what they should do during the first 72 hours of any severe weather-related event or disaster,” says Elbert County EMA Director Chuck Almond. “It’s also important to pay attention to your local forecast and be sure you have a way to receive weather alerts, even if you are asleep. Elbert County provides CodeRed Mass Emergency Notification. In addition, we recommend National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio as standard operating equipment in every home.”

NOAA Weather Radio is a nationwide network of radio stations dedicated to broadcasting continuous weather information directly from a nearby National Weather Service office. It is the best way to hear watches and warning from the National Weather Service (NWS), even if they are issued in the middle of the night.

To help families get started preparing for emergencies, Ready Georgia, a statewide emergency preparedness campaign established by GEMA offers the tools needed to make an emergency supply kit, develop a communications plan and stay informed about potential threats. Visitors to Ready Georgia’s website, www.ready.ga.gov, can create an online profile to receive a tailored plan for the entire family that includes the specific amount of supplies to put in their household Ready kits. They can also find local emergency contact information, learn about Georgia-specific disasters and read preparedness testimonials from local sports stars. Employers can use the Ready Your Business guide to create custom contingency plans and children can visit the ReadyKids page for age-appropriate information, videos and games. For preparedness on the go, families can also download Ready Georgia’s free mobile app to learn how to prepare for emergencies, create family communications plans and more.

During winter storms, floods, tornadoes or hurricanes, it may take emergency workers at least three days to reach certain areas in order to open roadways and restore utilities. The benefit of being self-sufficient for at least three days is that your family can survive circumstances that might otherwise be tragic, if you were not prepared. “With a little time and effort, families can prepare for severe weather hazards affecting our area. Developing a family disaster plan is the first step,” says Director Chuck Almond. Severe weather or a disaster may force an evacuation of your neighborhood or confine you to your home. What will you do if your basic utilities – water, gas, electricity, or telephones — are cut off? These are the types of questions your family disaster plan must address in order to help protect your family.

Follow these basic steps to develop a family disaster plan:

Gather information about hazards
In addition to your local EMA, you may contact the nearest National Weather Service office or Ready Georgia. Find out what type of disasters could occur and how you should respond. Learn the community’s warning signals and evacuation plans.

Meet with your family to create a plan
Discuss the information you have gathered. Pick two places to meet: a spot very near your home for an emergency, such as fire, and a place away from your neighborhood in case you cannot return home. Choose an out-of-state friend as your “family check-in contact” for everyone to call if the family gets separated. Discuss what you would do if advised to evacuate.

Implement your plan

  1. Post emergency telephone numbers by phones.
  2. Install safety features in your house, such as a NOAA Weather Radio, smoke detectors and fire extinguishers.
  3. Inspect your home for potential hazards: such as items that can move, fall, break or catch fire; and, correct them.
  4. Have family members learn basic safety measures: such as CPR and first-aid; how to use a fire extinguisher; and, how and when to turn off water, gas and electricity in your home.
  5. Teach children how and when to call 9-1-1 or your local Emergency Medical Services number.
  6. Keep enough supplies in your home to meet your family’s needs for at least three days.
  7. Assemble an emergency preparedness kit with items you may need in case of an evacuation.

Practice and maintain your plan
Ask questions to make sure your family remembers meeting places, phone numbers, and safety rules. Conduct drills. Test your weather radio and smoke detectors monthly and change the batteries at least once a year. Test and recharge your fire extinguishers according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Replace stored water and food every six months.

For more information, contact Elbert County EMA at 706-283-2003 or visit these websites: www.ready.ga.gov, www.erh.noaa.gov/gsp/ or www.gema.ga.gov.

About Ready Georgia

Ready Georgia is a statewide campaign designed to educate and empower Georgians to prepare for and respond to natural disasters, pandemic outbreaks, potential terrorist attacks and other large-scale emergencies. The campaign is a project of the Georgia Emergency Management Agency (GEMA) and provides a local dimension to Ready America, a broader national campaign. Ready Georgia aims to prepare citizens for maintaining self-sufficiency for at least 72 hours following an emergency, and uses an interactive website, free mobile app, online community toolkit, broadcast and print advertising and public awareness media messaging to reach its audiences. Ready Georgia is also on Facebook and YouTube.

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Ready Georgia Mobile App

Check out the link below for access to the Ready Georgia Mobile App for iPhone and Android.  It is a great way to keep informed!

Ready Georgia Mobile App

 

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Ready Georgia

Check out the link to Ready Georgia and the great videos over a multitude of topics!

Ready Georgia PSA


Ready National Preparedness Month Video


Ready Flood Video


Ready Business Video


Ready Family Video


Ready Seniors Video


Ready Pets Video


Ready Kids Video


Ready Football Video

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