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  • How To Prepare Your Family For Disaster, According To The PH Office Of Civil Defense

    Are you ready for the typhoons and flooding that the rainy season brings?
    by Johnna V. Giolagon .
How To Prepare Your Family For Disaster, According To The PH Office Of Civil Defense
PHOTO BY Jerome Ascano
  • The monsoon season has set in. Are you ready for the typhoons and flooding that the season brings? Are you ready for the complications that the raging pandemic might cause?

    A report by the United Nations Office on Disaster Risk Management said the Philippines ranks third with the highest risk worldwide.

    The same 2019 report said 60 percent of the country’s land area and 74 percent of the 104 million population is “exposed to multiple hazards” – typhoon, flooding, earthquake, fire, volcanic eruption, coastal hazards.

    How to prepare your family for disaster

    Speaking at the Office of Civil Defense’s Friday forum on disaster resilience, environmental planner Anna Phalashol said families need the following to be adequately prepared for natural hazards:

    1. Prepare a Go bag.

    A Go bag is a portable kit that contains basic supplies that will help you survive for at least 72 hours or three days when evacuated from a disaster. Phalashol suggests making the bag lightweight but big enough to pack the survival items — water and food like biscuits, a change of clothes, medicine, and first aid.

    Include rubbing alcohol or hand sanitizer and face masks to also be prepared for COVID-19. For women, include sanitary pads and undergarments.

    Each family member — even children — should have a Go Bag ready beside their bed a separate one in the car. This could be helpful in case you get stranded somewhere.

    2. Have an evacuation plan and set a meeting place.

    It can be an open space or government building near your house. Family members should know the safest route they will take to this meeting place.

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    3. Buy an emergency mobile phone.

    This can be a low-tech cell phone with a longer battery life plus a flashlight that family members can call. This is used only for these emergency cases.

    4. Have a list of emergency numbers.

    This should include the emergency numbers — barangay office, police, fire department, doctor, relatives, friends, doctors. The list can be posted by the door or stairs so there is no need to scroll through your mobile phone’s contact list. It is also advisable to memorize the numbers.

    Phalashol acknowledged that preparing for three days-worth of food might be difficult especially for poorer families.

    She underscored, though, that these families can still prepare a Go Bag as well as a list of emergency numbers to contact.

    Phalashol explained that the level of preparation might differ from family to family but the important thing there is every family prepared for possible natural hazards.

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