SPRINGFIELD – With weather forecasters predicting the potential for heavy rainfall this weekend as remnants of Hurricane Isaac move through Illinois, the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) today reminded people of the importance of personal preparedness.
The agency will be working to increase public awareness throughout September as part of National Preparedness Month, a nationwide campaign that encourages Americans to take simple steps to prepare for emergencies in their homes, businesses and communities.
“We certainly hope the remnants of Hurricane Isaac don’t cause any major problems,” said IEMA Director Jonathon Monken. “But if flooding or other problems arise, basic preparedness, such as having an emergency supply kit, a family communications plan and staying aware of changing weather conditions, can help people stay safe.”
Monken said every home should be equipped with an emergency supply kit, containing such items as water, non-perishable food, a weather radio, flashlight and extra batteries. A family communications plan, with agreed-upon meeting places for family members after a disaster and emergency contact information, is also an important part of family preparedness.
There are many resources available to help people prepare for disasters. The state’s Ready Illinois website (www.Ready.Illinois.gov) is a one-stop resource for detailed information about what to do before, during and after disasters. The website is also used during disaster to post current information, such as shelter locations, road closures and safety information. During the February 2011 blizzard, more than two million people sought information on the Ready Illinois website during a three-day period.
In addition, IEMA will post preparedness tips on the Ready Illinois Facebook page (www.facebook.com/ReadyIllinois) each day during September. Nearly 3,800 people currently follow IEMA on Facebook.