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Portland Bureau of Emergency Management

Readiness. Response. Recovery.

Phone: 503-823-4375

Fax: 503-823-3903

TDD: 503-823-3947

Five Steps to Family Disaster Planning

1. Talk - with your family about disasters that could happen in the Pacific Northwest, such as home fires, wildfires, severe winter weather, flooding, earthquakes, terrorism and hazardous material accidents.

2. Train - all family members. Learn to use a fire extinguisher. Locate your utility shut-off valves and know when and how to turn off your gas, electricity and water. Make sure all responsible people in the household have this knowledge or training.

Pick two places to meet:

  1. Right outside of your home in case of a sudden emergency, like a fire; and
  2. Outside of your neighborhood in case you can't return home or are asked to leave your neighborhood. Everyone must know the address and phone number of the meeting locations.

3. Take stock - of supplies you may already have on hand that would be helpful in a disaster. Involve the whole family in collecting and assembling supplies of food, water and emergency tools.

4. Tell - everyone in the household where emergency contact information will be kept. Post a copy on your refrigerator, keep another with your disaster supplies kit and in your purse, wallet or backpack. Make sure you have included an out-of-state contact. You may be able to reach them when local phone lines are down.

5. Test - your readiness on a regular basis. Review your family disaster plan and go through supplies at least once a year. Commit to a day or weekend to update phone numbers, hold family fire and earthquake drills and check supplies.