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PODCAST: Are you prepared for a wildfire, heat dome or flood emergency?

TODAY IN B.C.: Ashley Davidoff talks emergency plans and ‘grab-and-go’ bags

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Host Peter McCully chats with Ashley Davidoff, a public education officer with the Ministry of Emergency Management and Climate Readiness about how to be prepared for, and respond to, emergency situations like wildfires and floods.

“Regardless of the nature of the emergency, there are three steps to take to be better prepared,” said Davidoff. “Know your hazards, make a plan, and prepare emergency supplies, including an emergency kit and grab and go bags. The best way to prepare yourself for a wildfire would to be create that emergency plan with details like how you’ll communicate with loved ones and where you’ll meet in the event of an evacuation. Because knowing what to do in advance will reduce anxiety and help keep you focused and safe.”

Davidoff talks about what items should be included in grab-and-go bags, the content of which can vary given the situation.

“You’ll want to ensure that your grab-and-go bag includes things like ready-to-eat food and water, a phone charger and battery bank, a small battery powered or hand crank radio, a battery -owered or hand crank flashlight as well,” said Davidoff. “Extra batteries for those items. You want to make sure you have a small first aid kit and personal medications, anything that you may need, personal toiletries and items such as an extra pair of glasses or contactless lenses and solution if you use those. Include a copy of your emergency plan, as well as copies of important documents like insurance papers and identification, some cash and small bills just in case those interact, and credit card systems go down in that emergency. You want to make sure you have seasonal clothing and an emergency blanket.”

Extreme heat is responsible for the highest number of weather-related deaths annually in British Columbia.

“Heat stroke is absolutely an emergency, and overheating can be harmful to your health, and it could be potentially deadly,” said Davidoff.

Information on formulating emergency plans for various emergency scenarios can be found here, as well information on financial emergency assistance.

Emergency information updates can be found here.

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Peter McCully

About the Author: Peter McCully

Peter has been a broadcaster and publisher on both of Canada’s coasts and has owned a small newspaper and run an advertising agency along the way.
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