To honor the great work and accomplishments of Weather-Ready Nation Ambassadors, NOAA/NWS will formally recognize those Ambassadors who have made significant contributions to building a Weather-Ready Nation during National Preparedness Month (September). NOAA/NWS would like to congratulate the following Ambassadors for their great work this past year! By serving as a change agent and leader in their community, they have inspired others to be better informed and prepared, helping to minimize or even avoid the impacts of extreme weather, water and climate events.
NOAA’s Weather-Ready Nation focuses on building community resilience in the face of increasing vulnerability to extreme weather, water and climate events, and the National Weather Service has many great partners to aid in accomplishing this goal. This collaborative work includes working with NOAA’s/NWS’s partners and public, but requires the participation and commitment of a vast nationwide network of Ambassadors. Everyday, Weather-Ready Nation Ambassadors serve a pivotal role in affecting societal change - helping to build a Weather-Ready Nation!
IEMA Joins Nationwide Campaign to Encourage Disaster Preparedness
‘Don’t Wait. Communicate. Make Your Emergency Plan Today’ is Theme for National Preparedness Month in September
The campaign’s theme, ‘Don’t Wait. Communicate. Make Your Emergency Plan Today’, urges people to set aside time to discuss emergency plans with family members and develop a plan to stay safe when disaster strikes. The month-long preparedness drive will conclude on September 30 with ‘American’s PrepareAthon,’ a national day of action.
“Severe weather and other disasters can’t be prevented, and many occur without much warning,” said IEMA Director James K. Joseph. “We saw that happen last December with heavy rains and widespread flooding that claimed 10 lives and drove many people from their homes with little notice. Taking a few minutes now on your emergency plan could be a true life saver during an emergency.”
Throughout September, IEMA will offer tips and information on how to develop a family emergency communication plan, assemble an emergency supply kit, as well as ways to receive critical emergency warnings.
In addition, throughout September IEMA will post daily preparedness tips on the Ready Illinois Facebook page (www.facebook.com/ReadyIllinois) and Twitter (@ReadyIllinois).
During disasters, IEMA uses the Ready Illinois website, Facebook and Twitter pages to provide critical information about the incident, including shelter locations, road closures, safety information, photos and more.
Parents Encouraged to Include Emergency Preparedness in Back-to-School Plans
August is School and Campus Preparedness Month in Illinois
SPRINGFIELD – In the next few weeks, students from pre-kindergarten through college will be headed back to school. As parents prepare their students for the new academic year, the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) and local emergency management agencies across the state are encouraging parents to include emergency preparedness in their back-to-school plans.
“Emergencies can occur any time of the day or night, including when children are in school,” said IEMA Director James K. Joseph. “The start of a new school year is the perfect time to make sure you know your school’s plans for keeping students safe during an emergency and then talking to your child about those plans.”
Joseph offered several back-to-school planning tips for parents of school-aged children, including:
• Find out where children will be taken in the event of an evacuation during school hours.
Students headed off to college also need to be prepared for emergencies. Many college campuses offer email and text messages to alert students of potential dangers, such as severe weather and other threats. Encourage your college student to sign-up for such alerts. Some colleges also provide alert messages for parents so they also are aware of potential dangers on campus. In addition, make sure your student knows the emergency plans for their dorm or apartment building.
Additional preparedness information is available on the Ready Illinois website at www.Ready.Illinois.gov.
Illinois Department of Public Health Safety Tips for Heat
People most vulnerable for heat-related illness include the elderly, those who work or exercise outdoors, infants and children, the homeless or poor, and people with a chronic medical condition.
The Illinois Department on Aging encourages relatives and friends to make daily visits or calls to senior citizens living alone. When temperatures and humidity are extremely high, seniors and people with chronic health conditions should be monitored for dehydration and other effects of extreme heat. Additionally, seniors should eat lighter meals, take longer and more frequent rests, and drink plenty of fluids.
Never leave anyone, including pets, alone in a closed, parked vehicle. The air temperature inside a car rises rapidly during hot weather and can lead to brain damage or death.
Log onto www.ready.illinois.gov for more heat safety information and updates on statewide weather watches, warnings, and advisories.
Heat, Humidity Can Be Deadly Combination
Emergency management officials offer heat safety tips
SPRINGFIELD – On average, heat kills more people each year than other weather-related hazards, such as tornadoes, floods and lightning. To increase awareness about the dangers of extreme heat, the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) and local emergency management agencies are offering heat safety tips throughout July to help people stay safe when temperatures rise.
According to the National Weather Service, heat accounted for an average of 113 fatalities each year from 2006–2015. During that same period, tornadoes caused an average of 110 deaths each year, while floods resulted in an annual average of 84 fatalities.
“People often don’t realize how dangerous hot weather can be,” said IEMA Director James K. Joseph. “We want everyone to be aware of the dangers of extreme heat and what they can do to stay safe and healthy.”
Joseph said heat-related fatalities can be prevented by taking precautions when temperatures rise. One of the most important heat safety tips is to never leave children, elderly people, adults with disabilities, or pets in parked cars even for a short time. Temperatures in vehicles rise much faster than many people realize.
Even with the windows slightly open, temperatures inside a vehicle will rise 30 to 40 degrees in less than 30 minutes. The effects of hot cars can be more severe on children because their bodies warm at a faster rate than adults.
Several tragic deaths also have occurred when children got into vehicles without their parents’ knowledge and then couldn’t get out. It’s important to always lock car doors and trunks, even at home, and keep keys out of children’s reach.
• Stay hydrated by drinking at least 1½ to 2 quarts of fluids daily, even if you don’t feel thirsty.
Additional tips on how to protect yourself and others from heat-related illnesses are available on the state’s Ready Illinois website (www.Ready.Illinois.gov).
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