The Office of Emergency Management (OEM), a division of Miami-Dade Fire Rescue (MDFR), encourages residents of Miami-Dade County to be ready for hurricane season, which started on Sunday, June 1. OEM wants the public to take four simple steps to be prepared for the 2014 hurricane season.
1. Be Informed — Before a disaster, get information about local emergency plans for shelter and evacuation. If you feel you will need emergency evacuation assistance during a storm, call 3-1-1 for an application to be mailed to your residence. Have a list of local emergency contacts handy. Sign up for Miami-Dade Alerts, at <www.miamidade.gov/fire>. This free service will send you text messages about any significant emergency event.
2. Make a Plan — Create a family emergency plan and make sure to go over it with every member of your family. This plan should cover evacuation routes, contact information, and important phone numbers. You may download a family emergency plan at <www.ready.gov>.
3. Get a Kit — This kit should have enough items to survive for the first 72 hours after a storm. It should include non-perishable foods, one gallon of water per person per day, battery operated radio, and flashlights. Other items that should be included are medication, diapers and formula if you have a small child, and please don’t forget the food for your pets.
4. Get Involved — Miami-Dade County offers free training in basic disaster response skills for members of the Community Emergency Response Team (CERT). Volunteers will learn fire safety, light search and rescue skills, team organization, and disaster medical operations. To learn more about becoming a CERT member, send email to <firstname.lastname@example.org>.
For more information on what you should do to prepare for the 2014 hurricane season, download the 2014 Miami-Dade County Hurricane Guide at <www.miamidade.- gov/fire>. For additional information, contact MDFR’s Public Affairs Bureau at 786- 331-5200.