Washington, D.C., February 24, 2009—
As we gear up for spring, the winter storms that left many communities without power serve as a reminder that emergency situations can occur without warning. To ensure that we are ready for possible future emergencies, the American Public Health Association’s (APHA) “Get Ready: Set Your Clocks, Check Your Stocks” campaign reminds Americans to update their emergency preparedness kits when they change their clocks on March 8.
Daylight saving time already prompts us to change the batteries in our smoke alarms; APHA points out that it is also the perfect time to make sure our families are prepared for natural disasters, potential disease outbreaks or any other unexpected emergencies. The “Get Ready: Set Your Clocks, Check Your Stocks” campaign encourages you to use changing your clock as a reminder to refresh the supplies in your emergency stockpile or to create a new stockpile if you don’t have one.
“Since we already use daylight saving time as an opportunity to focus on preparedness, it’s a great time for us also to make sure that we have a fully stocked emergency kit and that none of the perishable items have expired,” said Georges C. Benjamin, MD, FACP, FACEP (E), executive director of APHA. “As we spring forward, let’s ensure that we all have a preparedness kit to fall back on in the event of an emergency.”
This season, APHA kicks off its “Get Ready: Set Your Clocks, Check Your Stocks” campaign with the release of new online materials aimed at helping Americans become better prepared. Two new fact sheets provide tips on how to keep pets safe in an emergency and how to create and maintain a stockpile on a budget.
These new resources are available online in conjunction with a downloadable toolkit in which families can find out why preparing for a public health emergency is important, what to include in an emergency preparedness kit, how to get kids involved and much more. Additionally, site visitors can download stockpiling fact sheets in Spanish, as well as the “Get Set Emergency Preparedness Project Kit,” which provides resources for high school students.
As we “spring forward” this year, public health professionals around the country will be joining APHA in encouraging Americans to ensure their families are ready for any emergency and reminding them that they can never be too prepared. Participants are invited to visit the new Get Ready online calendar to post events taking place in their community or view events that are being held in their area and get involved.
To download these materials and learn more about APHA’s campaign, visit the “Get Ready: Set Your Clocks, Check Your Stocks” Web site.