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Be Prepared

Be Prepared

If you were anywhere between Vegas and L.A. last week, chances are you felt the ground rumble. That earth-shattering movement wasn’t caused by a Godzilla-like monster attacking the city of Los Angeles, but by an earthquake. In response to the earthquake, safety officials in cities all over America are talking about how to be better prepared. In Tulsa, Oklahoma they're hosting a series of meetings to gain input from citizens on how to best protect them from natural disasters.

The number of natural disasters has tripled in the last thirty years, and since just about anything can happen, cities and towns need to be more prepared for whatever is to come. Most state web sites offer information on what to do in case of a natural disaster as well as how you can protect yourself.

For more information outside of your state and city's web site, check out the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) web site. From how to prepare for something as drastic as a tsunami or something as frequent as a heat wave, FEMA provides you with information on how to deal with the dangerously unpredictable.

FEMA states that the most critical aspect of surviving a natural disaster is having shelter. “For example, for a tornado, a room should be selected in a basement or an interior room on the lowest level away from corners, windows, doors and outside walls.” In most natural disaster cases, homes can be without power or electricity for some time. In order to make sure you can withstand the loss of power and eat during the outage, FEMA states, “there are two options for keeping food safe if you are without power for a long period:

* Look for alternate storage space for your perishable food.

* Use dry ice. Twenty-five pounds of dry ice will keep a 10-cubic-foot freezer below freezing for 3-4 days. Use care when handling dry ice, and wear dry, heavy gloves to avoid injury.”

For more information, be sure to check out FEMA's web site as well our feature and expert interviews on Surviving a Natural Disaster.

Do you know what's being done in your area to protect against hurricanes, floods, tornados and earthquakes? Do you feel your town is properly prepared? [KJRH]

Posted: 8/5/08