On Monday, February 6, Governor Nathan Deal, the Georgia Emergency Management Agency/Homeland Security (GEMA) and the National Weather Service (NWS) ask families to join them in preparing for natural disasters. it is the first day of Severe Weather Awareness Week in Georgia - a day for families to create an emergency plan and purchase and program a NOAA weather radio is the best way to hear watches and warning from NWS, even if they are issued in the middle of the night.
GEMA's Ready Georgia campaign can help. The Ready Georgia website (www.ready.ga.gov) provides online step-by-step tools that enable you to create a custom preparedness plan and emergency supply kit.
You can create a personal profile with basic family member information (medical instructions, disabilities, pets) and contact information (work, school, emergency contact, meeting place). After you create your profile, a custom checklist and plan will be generated with recommended amounts of food and water your family will need to survive for 72 hours along with a personal emergency communication plan with specific meeting places.
For preparedness on the go, families can also download Ready Georgia's free mobile app to learn how to prepare for emergencies, create family communications plans, receive weather alerts, and more.
Parents will find children's games and activities on the ReadyKids page, and households with elderly or disabled family members and pets will also find specific information on preparing for severe weather.
"The best way to survive a disaster is to become your own first responder by taking the necessary steps to prepare," says Charley English, director of GEMA/Homeland Security. "You can create a Ready profile in less than an hour.
NOAA Weather Radios are one of the most vital components of being prepared. NOAA Weather Radio is a nationwide network of radio stations broadcasting continuous weather information direct from a nearby NWS office. NOAA Weather Radio broadcasts NWS continuous weather and other hazard information 24 hours a day.
During an emergency, NWS will interrupt routine weather radio programming and send out a special tone alarm that activates weather radios in the listening area. A statewide tornado drill will be conducted on Feb. 8.
For more information on how to prepare for severe weather, visit these websites: www.ready.ga.gov, www.srh.noaa.gov/ffc, www.gema.ga.gov. For more information about specific risks in your area, contact your local emergency management agency