Make sure you have a family emergency plan should severe weather cause travel or essential services to be interrupted. Your plan should include basic safety measures, emergency phone numbers and plans to stay with friends or relatives should an evacuation be ordered. It is a good idea to set up a contact point with a relative out of the area with whom you can leave messages for other family members who may not be able to contact you via telephone.
Have your family learn basic safety measures, such as CPR and first aid: how and when to turn off utilities in your home and teach children to call 911 during emergencies. Prepare an emergency supply kit including a 3-day supply of water and non-perishable foods, a battery-powered radio, flashlights and extra batteries, a first aid kit with prescription medicines (rotate batteries and medications periodically to keep them current), special items for infants and the elderly as well as cash and credit cards. Preparing and practicing your family plan is your best protection should an emergency occur. For additional information visit the FEMA website or the Bergen County Office of Emergency Management at www. bcoem.org.