09/10/12 As part of National Preparedness Month, the Indiana State Department of Health has launched a “30 Days, 30 Ways to Prepare” campaign. The campaign will provide daily tips categorized into a weekly theme for the month of September.  The first week’s theme is focused on hazards and responses. One of the steps in preparing for disasters is know about the emergency hazards in your area, and the appropriate responses to each one.

Indiana has floods, tornados, and yes, we have earthquakes. All can result in power outages. Have plans for what to do when the electricity is out for an extended period of time. Make sure you have plans for providing needed light, warmth, and refrigerated food protection.

Maintain up-to-date immunizations for you and your family. This is always important to protect your health, however, it’s especially important in disasters due to abnormal conditions. For example, people may be cut by debris, requiring the protection of a tetanus vaccination. Contact your health care provider for a PIN number and you can get your record on line at www.MyVaxIndiana.in.gov. Keep a copy of each person’s record with your preparedness plan.

A disaster can make conditions worse for people who are confused, have vision or hearing problems, or physical disabilities. Write down the special things you need to do for these people in your home and add them to your plan.

If your home is damaged you may need to shut off the water, power, and gas to avoid further damage. Learn where the shut off valves are located and whether special tools are required. Once the gas has been turned off, only the gas company should turn it back on.

To view the daily preparedness tips, visit the Indiana State Department of Health’s website at www.StateHealth.in.gov. For more information about National Preparedness Month, visit the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s website at http://www.ready.gov/.