SEPTEMBER IS NATIONAL PREPRAREDNESS MONTH

For Immediate Release: September 17, 2015

West Trenton, NJ – September’s National Preparedness Month is in full swing at the New Jersey Office of Emergency Management (NJOEM). They are reminding New Jersey residents “Don’t Wait. Communicate. Make Your Emergency Plan Today.”

New Jersey State Police Superintendent and State Director of Emergency Management Colonel Rick Fuentes stressed the significance of linking to reliable information sources and connecting with community members to aid in the overall disaster preparedness effort. “Our State has experienced numerous incidents including Sandy, numerous winter storms, hazardous materials incidents, and other events. What we have learned is that awareness and preparedness saves lives. Tune in, log-on, opt-in, ‘like’ or ‘follow’ state, county, local and federal agencies for credible disaster-related information such as alerts and warnings, situational awareness updates, and where to find help. Personal connections matter, too. After you’ve completed your household preparedness activities, lend a hand to someone who may need assistance, or join the 24,000 New Jerseyans who have completed Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training.”

A list of New Jersey’s County Offices of Emergency Management, with social media and local alert systems links, can be found on the New Jersey Office of Emergency Management Website: www.ready.nj.gov.

NJOEM also recommends specific emergency preparedness actions:

Make an emergency kit: Emergency kits will allow individuals and families to survive several days without access to food, water or electricity. Emergency kits should include at least a three to five day supply of non-perishable food and water, prescription medications for up to two weeks if available, baby supplies and any additional items for special medical needs such as an extra pair of eye glasses and batteries for hearing aids. Your kit should also include important phone numbers for doctors as well as car cell-phone chargers. For information on how to put a family emergency kit together, visit www.ready.nj.gov

Make an emergency plan. Make plans with family and friends in case you’re not together when any type of emergency – natural, technological or man-made – occurs. Discuss how you will contact each other, where you will meet and what you will do in different situations. Become familiar with your town’s evacuation routes. For information on how to put a family emergency plan together, visit www.ready.nj.gov.

When your family plan and kit are complete, consider taking it to next level by attending Community Emergency Response Team training. Information about CERT training can be found on the NJOEM website: http://www.state.nj.us/njoem/citizen/cert.html

Stay informed: NJOEM recommends the following ways to stay informed about emergencies:

On the Web – Use credible websites to get information about natural hazards and emergency preparedness. The NJOEM works closely with the National Weather Service, the Federal Emergency Management Agency regarding forecasts and other important disaster news.

Social Media – Social media and other advanced communications technologies are used by NJOEM and by emergency managers statewide.

Alerts – Mobile / Text (SMS) & E-Mail

  • NIXLE – Subscribe to the NJ State Police (NJSP) on Nixle Connect at http://local.nixle.com/new-jersey-state-police/. New Jersey residents can register to receive messages by sending a text message with their zip code to 888777 (data rates may apply depending on your plan). Online registration is also available at nixle.com
  • NJ Alert – NJ Alert is a free, voluntary and confidential emergency alerting system that allows NJ Office of Emergency Management officials to send E-mail or text messages to cell phones, and other email enabled devices during an emergency event. Sign up for NJ Alert by logging on to: njalert.gov.
  • CMAS -the Community Mobile Alert System – this nationwide system is now being used the National Weather Service to transmit urgent weather info to your cell phone. A warning means the hazard is imminent; a watch means conditions are favorable for the hazard to occur. Your cell phone must be WEA (Wireless Emergency Alert) enabled to receive these messages.
  • NOAA Weather Radio – is a nationwide network of radio stations broadcasting continuous weather information directly from the nearest National Weather Service Office. NOAA Weather Radio broadcasts official Weather Service warnings, watches, forecasts and other hazard information 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. NOAA Weather Radios are typically inexpensive, readily available in stores and can often be programmed for your specific area. http://www.nws.noaa.gov/nwr/

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