The period between September and October marks the transition from summer to fall and the knowledge that winter is just around the corner. Gardens and flowers are going into their dormant state; the fall harvest of crops is about to be completed; and preparations for the coming, shortened days of winter are underway-at least in the northern climates. A certain dog is also making sure we are all thinking about fire safety as well.
While the calendar can tell us when to think about certain tasks requiring preparation because of the changing seasons, there is no similar calendar that says what day a tornado will strike, when an earthquake will be triggered or what day a fire might affect our home, place of work or community in the case of a wildfire. September is National Emergency Preparedness Month-a time to pause and think about the what if’s: what if I have a fire in my home; what if a hurricane is imminent; what if I lose the power to my home for several days; what if I have cope with extreme heat-or a severe winter storm.
Devoting a month to think about these perils and how you can best handle them is good planning-and good preparation. NFPA offers myriad resources to identify the what if’s and just as importantly, the how to’s; how to react to a fire in my home; how to prepare for a hurricane; how to deal with no power; how to manage in extreme swings of temperature or other weather events. Check out NFPA’s Emergency Preparedness page for ideas, planning, supplies and resources you and your family should have on hand. See the numerous resources and information available from FEMA on their Ready.Gov website.
Ralph Waldo Emerson once said- An ounce of action is worth a ton of theory. This September, add a few ounces to your preparation cart.-Robert Solomon, PE, NFPA