Disaster Preparedness Month, night 24: How often to practice?

Just a little encouragement as we enter the final week of Disaster Preparedness Month. Even the pros work to prepare. The scene above is from the Joint Training Facility in the southeasternmost corner of West Seattle – scene of the Fire Muster competition featured here on WSB earlier tonight. That’s an area of the site used for search/rescue training – just last month, Christopher Boffoli shot this video of firefighters participating in monthlong training exercises:

Telling the story in that clip is Seattle Fire Department spokesperson Dana Vander Houwen, who explained that firefighters go through that training annually. But what about you and your family-preparedness plans – how often should you review? At least “every few months” seems to be the consensus. Set a day and time and hold everyone to it. You could alternate practicing earthquake drills, fire evacuation plans, and going over the information about where you would all meet if you weren’t together when disaster struck (this is where West Seattle has an advantage, with the Emergency Communication Hubs – be sure everyone knows “your” location). Don’t just make a plan once, or pack a kit, and forget about it until you realize rustily – oops – should have practiced.

Got questions about this or other preparedness issues? Great place to ask: West Seattle Be Prepared group on Facebook.

2 Replies to "Disaster Preparedness Month, night 24: How often to practice?"

  • James April 26, 2010 (6:52 am)

    Do we have access to basic assessment videos about the safety of our own homes, etc. after an earthquake? Anyone know?

    thanks, jd

  • homedk May 4, 2010 (10:07 am)

    We have some good videos about home safety (assessing home hazards) that we’ve linked to from the Resources section of the West Seattle Be Prepared website. On the Training & Education page, there are links to safety videos on the Seattle Channel; here’s a direct link to those: http://www.seattlechannel.org/videos/watchVideos.asp?program=emergencyPlanning.
    On the Additional Information page, you might start with the link to the Emergency Management Division simulation of a 6.7 quake wreaking havoc on a home’s interior.
    If you meant videos about assessing structural hazards in homes, we don’t have anything on this in video format (yet). You can learn a great deal about assessing structural hazards from taking one of the Earthquake retrofitting classes; the instructors in the class can also answer questions specific to your own home.
    Hope this helps!

Sorry, comment time is over.