Guide to Tsunami Preparedness
The deadliest tsunamis recorded in history took the lives of thousands of people. Reliving these moments is not anyone’s idea of spreading awareness but being prepared will likely let you survive life-threatening situations. Tsunamis are very dangerous and they don’t need to be taken lightly. Here are some tips on how you can prepare for a tsunami:
1.) Contact your local disaster management office and find out if tsunamis have occurred in your area or if they can possibly occur. You may also get in touch with your local state geological survey, NWS (National Weather Service) or American Red Cross chapter. It will also help if you know the actual height of your street above sea level and the distance of your street from the coast and other bodies of water.
2.) Create an evacuation route and keep practicing until you familiarize yourself with it. This will allow you to panic less during a tsunami because you already know where to go. Also, you’d be able to follow your escape route even at night or during stormy weather if you practice. Having alternative routes will also prepare you better when dealing with different possibilities (road blockages, fallen trees, etc.).
3.) If you are at home and your local authorities alert you of an incoming tsunami, you need to act fast and take only the items you need to get through the disaster. Your survival kit should be kept in a spot that you can easily access. The most important items in a Bug Out Bag include non-perishable food, water or water purification tablets, first aid supplies, mylar blankets, clothing and survival tools such as waterproof matches and LED flashlight.
4.) It wouldn’t hurt to discuss the dangers of tsunami to everyone in the family. Educate yourself about the warning signs and create an evacuation plan. Practice some tsunami drills and make sure everyone knows what to do and what to bring before you leave your home.
5.) If you have pets, you need to build an emergency kit for them too. It’s also crucial to know where you are supposed to take them when a disaster hits your area. Of course most owners would want to take their pets with them if possible. However, some emergency shelters do not allow pets so it’s a must to contact your veterinarian to ask for some advice. Find out which hotels or motels in your area are pet-friendly. You can stay in a hotel temporarily until you find a more permanent place to go to.
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