How you can prepare for an emergency
Many of us will experience minor emergencies in our lives such as power cuts, burst water pipes, getting caught up in gridlock. As well as these everyday situations, some of us may also experience a major incident.
However, you can plan and prepare for a major incident.
There are some simple steps you can take to be better prepared to deal with a major incident:
find out what emergencies could happen in our district, through our Community Risk Register [link to download page Our Community risk register]
- ask your Parish Council what risks they have identified in their Community Emergency Plan
- prepare a ‘grab bag’. Essex Civil Protection and Emergency Management have a list of essentials you can pack ready for an emergency. This could be a satchel bag or small suitcase with wheels
- think about how you would look after your pets. If you need to evacuate, have you got a carrier or cage?
- agree a meeting place with your family – does everyone know where to meet if something were to go wrong? Do you know a place where it could be easy to meet up?
What to do during an emergency
You must always follow the advice of the emergency services if there is a major incident.
Until the emergency services provide instruction the best course of action is to:
Find a place of safety (such as a home or a relative’s or friend’s house. Make sure you close the doors and windows. Responders may open emergency accommodation. This will provide a place of safety for those affected by an incident who have no alternative place to go
Stay inside until the danger has passed. You can use this time to contact friends and family to make sure they are safe and confirm that you are safe
Turn on the TV, look online at news sources, and tune into local radio stations. Responders use these sources to issue updates and advice to the public during an incident
What to do after an emergency
The stress that can come from an incident can be a long and tiring process, both for individuals and the community. There are steps you can take to help you, your family, and the community recover from an incident:
- keep an eye out for any updates during the recovery process. Although the incident itself is over, responders have a duty to help recovery within the community. Anyone affected by an incident will continue to receive information about what to do
- if you have not done so already, let your loved ones know you are safe
- follow the instructions of the emergency services, they are there to help you
- you may not be able to return to your home immediately if it is in an incident zone and you may need temporary accommodation. Enquire with your home insurance provider or family and friends to find out where you could stay
- if you have no home insurance or alternative sources of accommodation, get in touch with us for specific advice
- take pictures of your home if there has been any damage and keep records of initial repairs and cleaning costs you incur. This will help with your insurance claim