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Why Should I Prepare?

Prepare in a Year

Family Disaster Plan

72 Hour Kit




Hazardous Materials

Hazard Risks

Shelter in Place


Water Purification


Winter Storms

Create a Family Disaster Plan

Download the plan

Disaster Preparedness Handbook 2003 is a new publication from Washington State Division of Emergency Management that goes beyond the basics covererd in the Family Preparedness Plan below.

The 1996 publication "Family Emergency Preparedness Plan" is a good starting point. Also, the  Red CrossYou are about to leave the Whatcom County Site - click globe for disclaimerwebsite can provide you with information on creating a Family Emergency Preparedness Plan.

Your plan should include the following:       

  • What types of disasters can happen in your community and what to do in each type.
  • What you will do in an evacuation, including what to do with pets. Remember, most disaster shelters will not accept animals.
  • Where you will meet if separated. Pick one place outside your home and one place outside your community. Make sure that each family member knows the address and phone number of these locations.
  • Two escape routes from each room in case of a fire.
  • The location of the utility shut-off in your home, and procedures for using them.
  • Two escape routes from your community. Remember, roads may be blocked during a disaster.
  • Your out of area Contact. Designate a friend or family member, preferably in another state, to be your out of out of area contact. When a disaster occurs, you can contact this person, who will act as a relay to other friends or family members.
  • Emergency phone numbers. These should include the numbers for police, fire, ambulance, out of neighborhood meeting site, and your out of area contact. Consider making cards with these numbers for each member of the family to keep with them.

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