National Emergency Preparedness Week a chance for Red Deerians to prepare

Red Deerians should always be prepared for emergency situations, including the current COVID-19 pandemic.

The City of Red Deer is currently recognizing National Emergency Preparedness Week, which runs until Saturday.

“Any time there is a large emergency situation, whether locally or in our province, we do tend to see more uptake on our emergency preparedness messaging,” said Karen Mann, director of emergency management with the city.

“People see what’s going on around them and they take a greater interest in understanding the risks in our community, making a family emergency plan and putting together a 72-hour emergency kit, which are the three steps for emergency preparedness.

“We don’t know if this is going to be the case this year, but we do know with the ongoing COVID-19 situation, people will also take this opportunity to think about their overall preparedness for any hazard that could exist in their community.”

Normally, during this annual week, the city hosts a “variety of activities” to spread the message of emergency preparedness, said Mann. But due to physical distancing requirements, some plans had to be altered.

“We do think it’s important to continue to … get the information out, because it’s very easy to get very focused on just one hazard,” she said.

“Just because we’re having a pandemic, doesn’t mean that we don’t need to be aware of the other hazards within our community.”

Red Deer has a number of hazards – some affecting specific areas more than others.

“Some of the ones we’re familiar with here in Red Deer are extreme weather – extreme winter weather would include blizzards or ice storms.

“And on the other side, extreme summer weather can include severe wind storms, tornados, excessive heat.”

There is also some isolated flood risk in certain areas of the city and other potential risks, she added.

For more information on emergency preparedness, including details on emergency kits and how to sign up for emergency notifications from the city, visit www.reddeer.ca/getprepared.



sean.mcintosh@reddeeradvocate.com

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