(NBC News) — Unlike and hurricanes, many disasters leave you no time to prepare.
“It’s a disaster. We call it that for a reason,” says FEMA’s Jeff Byard. “Your lives are going to be impacted, your stuff is going to be impacted.”
That impact can be softened by preparation, like gathering a kit of essentials.
“Food, water, phone charger, your medications, a small first aid kit,” advises Cindy Huge of the American Red Cross.
That kit should be easily portable. It’s also important to have an escape and evacuation plan.
“Practice this with family members and children, which way to escape and have a spot to meet at where you will account for everyone,” Huge says.
Cash and non-perishable food are something else you’ll need, especially if you have to evacuate.
You can also prepare by backing up important documents.
“Take pictures of your house insurance, your car insurance, important documents to your family,” Huge says.
This way, the aftermath is nowhere near as bad as the disaster itself.
Read more here.