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Be ready for emergencies with food, water and a ... can opener?

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Updated: October 25, 2012 6:11AM



From a can opener to water and wrench, the Kane County Health Department is urging residents to be prepared for emergencies by having needed items on hand before disaster strikes.

The department is issuing the advisory as the nation recognizes September as National Preparedness Month.

Following a natural or man-made disaster, people may need to survive on their own. That means having enough food, water and other supplies to last 72 hours, the health department said in a press release.

It noted that relief workers may not be able to reach everyone immediately, and it could take days to get help.

Emergency experts have four sayings to help families prepare for emergencies: Get informed, Make a Plan, Get a Kit, and Get Involved. A disaster supplies kit is simply a collection of basic items a household may need in the event of an emergency.

People should try to assemble a kit well in advance of an emergency. They may have to evacuate at a moment’s notice and take essentials with them. Additionally, basic services such as electricity, gas, water, sewage treatment and telephones may be cut off for days, the health department said.

A basic emergency supply kit could include the following items:

Water (one gallon of water per person per day for at least three days) for drinking and sanitation.

Food (at least a three-day supply of non-perishable items).

Battery-powered or hand-crank radio and a NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert and extra batteries for both.

Flashlight and extra batteries.

First aid kit.

Whistle to signal for help.

Moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties for personal sanitation.

Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities.

Manual can opener for food.

Local maps.

Cellphone with chargers (inverter or solar charger).

“Remember the unique needs of your family members, including growing children, when making your emergency supply kit and family emergency plan,” the release said.

More information is available by visiting http://kanehealth.com/emergency_response.htm or www.ready.gov.



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