New safety program directs residents to grab a kit and walk to school in the wake of a disaster
Posted by Ben McAdams
September 25, 2017
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Major disasters have swept areas of our country over the last several weeks. Hurricanes and fires have displaced families from their homes causing fear and uncertainty as people look to escape the disaster and then rebuild in its wake. Salt Lake County is overdue for a large earthquake to rock the region. We don’t know when it will hit, but we know it will. The best thing we can do, is to prepare now.
The SAFE (Schools Aid Families in Emergencies) Neighborhoods program helps to organize communities for a major disaster. Today I joined emergency managers to highlight the new program that is now active at every elementary school throughout the Salt Lake Valley. After disaster strikes, people can grab their 96-hour kit and go to school. At every school is a sign posted telling the first person to arrive where to find the “Just In Time” (JIT) kit. The JIT kit has clear instructions, maps, and other materials that any adult can use to begin organizing their neighborhood.
SAFE Neighborhoods focuses on three areas:
- Build a 96-hour kit for each family member. The kit contains things like food, medications, and first aid.
- Create a family communications plan so your family members know where to go and who to contact in a disaster.
- After a major disaster, grab your kit and go school.
Watching the recent disasters unfold have shown that emergency responders will be very busy and unable to reach neighborhoods, so we need to step up and get prepared to be our own response, until help can arrive. We’ve also seen neighbor helping neighbor. It’s been inspiring to watch people – in the face tragedy – lending helping hands and care for one another. That is what SAFE Neighborhoods is about.
Mayor McAdams looks through a JIT kit with Melissa Ford, local resident trained in SAFE
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