Now is the time to prepare for emergencies. If you are notified to evacuate before you BEGIN preparations, you're very late. The information on this page is intended to get you started on preparations. It is not intended to endorse particular products or suppliers, these are merely examples of types of products and methods to consider. It is by no means the final word on what you can do while the sun is shining to be prepared.
There are quite a number of incidents on Oahu each year that could potentially lead to situations requiring emergency communications.
- You should get this book, and take action on it. "What To Do When The Sh*t Hits The Fan" by David Black
- If you wish to be better prepared, check out this list.
- Six simple tips for ham radio operators
- Hawaiian Electric Company offers a good Emergency Preparedness section. Because of the long URLs, it's best if you click your way through the menu. www.heco.com
- The Honolulu Advertiser offers information and HECO's checklist. the.honoluluadvertiser.com
A reminder: Being prepared is a personal responsibility. Being aware of emergency response and recovery procedures before an incident is also a personal responsibility.
A second reminder: During an emergency, emergency responders use the regular phone lines to activate and coordinate a response, especially between agencies. Nothing is more frustrating to a responder than to get no open phone lines, busy cell phone networks and busy signals -- it slows down their response. So do yourself a favor and keep the phone lines clear! Make ONE call to a relative on the mainland, let them know you're okay, and tell them to call the other relatives on the mainland. That frees up the phone lines for local emergency response.
A third reminder: At the exact moment a disaster occurs, assume everything is broken. What the responders are doing is building a response. If things are working, that's one less headache and the response is one step closer. If its broken, it'll be fixed in priority order. If people, equipment or materials need to be moved as part of that response, especially from a warehouse or staging center to the scene of the response, recognize that it takes some time. In the meantime, improvise.
Do you know where your nearest three shelters? Do you have what you need?
Consider the advantages of a crank-powered emergency radio to be able to listen to authorities at any time, regardless of batteries.
The hurricane scenario is the most difficult scenario.
- If a hurricane should strike directly on Oahu, it would not only affect Oahu, but also the livelihood of the Neighbor Islands.
- These systems would be affected: electricity, phone, communications, fresh water, sewage, air and ocean transportation. Retail, food, mobile fuel distribution, ground transportation and refuse disposal would be affected.
- Not only would the residents have to deal with repair and recovery, many businesses would lose their base of visiting customers.
- For these reasons, in addition to communications needs, you need to prepare for:
- Stockpiling of adequate food, water and supplies for the home.
- Stockpiling cleaning supplies and disposables such as cleaning rags.
- Stockpiling supplies and materials for home repair to limit the subsequent damage to the interior by exposure to the elements.
- Evacuation to a shelter.
- Mitigation of potential damage to your home by extra bracing and other preparations.
- Application for federal and other loans.
- The process of repair and restoration.
- Economic dislocation lasting several months at a minimum.
- Conservation of materials, supplies, money.
Oahu Civil Defense Agency offers this Hurricane Action Checklist
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