Disasters disrupt thousands of lives every year. Each disaster has lasting effects, both to people and property.
If a disaster occurs in your community, local government and disaster-relief organizations will try to help you, but you need to be ready as well. Local responders may not be able to reach you immediately, or they may need to focus their efforts elsewhere.
Being prepared can reduce fear, anxiety, and losses that accompany disasters. People also can reduce the impact of disasters (by flood proofing or securing items that could shake loose in an earthquake) and sometimes avoid the danger completely.
To help you prepare for a disaster, FEMA developed Are You Ready? An In-depth Guide to Citizen Preparedness - a comprehensive source on individual, family, and community preparedness.
Are You Ready? provides a step-by-step approach to disaster preparedness by walking the reader through how to get informed about local emergency plans, how to identify hazards that affect their local area, and how to develop and maintain an emergency communications plan and disaster supplies kit. Are You Ready? also provides Are You Ready in-depth information on specific hazards (such as floods, winter storms, earthquakes and landslides) including what to do before, during, and after each hazard type.