Planning today to stay safe tomorrow

Emergency Preparedness Week-1Emergencies can happen anywhere, at any time, making emergency preparedness a shared responsibility that involves individuals, all levels of government and local organizations. If you know how to stay safe in an emergency, you help first responders focus their attention on those in immediate need during a crisis situation.

Halton’s emergency management plans and programs ensure that our essential services remain available when you need them most. You can also contribute to our community resilience by being prepared. All it takes is three simple steps:

  • Know the risks – identify potential hazards in your area that could cause or contribute to an emergency.
  • Make a plan – ensure your household knows what to do before, during and after various emergencies, and make note of any neighbours, family or friends who may be particularly vulnerable in a crisis.
  • Get a kit – assemble, buy or refresh the items your household would need to stay safe for 72 hours, including supplies for older adults, children and pets.

Emergency Preparedness Week-2May 6 to 12 is Emergency Preparedness Week, and this year’s theme “Be Emergency Ready: Stay Connected”, explores the many ways you may receive notifications about a local emergency. On May 7, the Province will test one of these channels—the Ontario Emergency Warning System—by sending an alert directly to televisions, radios and supported mobile devices.

This system, part of the national Alert Ready network, is also available for Halton Region to use—alongside our enhanced Community Notification System (eCNS) for landline phones—if dangerous conditions require you to take action to keep yourself and your family safe. In the event an emergency requires you to leave your home, we may open an evacuation centre in one or more of the following local facilities to provide temporary shelter and care:

By working with the Local Municipalities, community partners and first responders, we will continue to minimize the risks, coordinate response efforts and reduce the impact of crisis situations. Together we help keep Halton safe and a great place to live, work, raise a family and retire. For more on emergency preparedness, visit halton.ca/beprepared.

As always, if you have any Regional concerns or comments you would like to share, please feel free to email me at gary.carr@halton.ca. You can also find me on Twitter @garycarrhalton, LinkedIn or Facebook. To receive further updates on Regional issues, please subscribe to my quarterly e-newsletter, “The Carr Report”.