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Emergency Preparedness Week May 6-12


Staff writers

May 5, 2012 — May 6-12 marks Emergency Preparedness Week. Do you have the tools to survive a natural disaster or emergency in your home?

Emergency Preparedness Week runs from May 6-12 and is an annual national event.
Emergency Preparedness Week runs from May 6-12 and is an annual national event.

When it comes to preparing for an emergency or disaster, most people are left feeling overwhelmed and helpless in case of an event. The fact is that these distresses affect a large number of people and can often overwhelm regular emergency services.

Most disasters that occur are out of our control and can happen with little or no warning - at any time. Emergency managers press the idea that knowing what to do next will help you better control the situation and put you and your family in a position to recover much quicker.

Families should have supplies to last at least for 72 hours in case of an emergency.
Families should have supplies to last at least for 72 hours in case of an emergency.

"First responders will not immediately be able to respond to every single person who needs it [in large scale incidents]," says John Saunders, President of the International Association of Emergency Managers (IAEM). "The more that we can take care of ourselves, and the longer we can take care of ourselves, the less we'll suffer short term, and will also get over it that much quicker."

EPW is an annual event aimed to increase awareness about being prepared to cope during an emergency. Saunders says that families should have sufficient supplies for at least 72 hours in case of a disaster. 

If you are in the Greater Toronto Area this week, fire prevention staff will be on-hand on Tuesday, May 8 at the McConaghy Seniors' Centre (10100 Yonge St.) and on Wednesday, May 9 at Central Library (1 Atkinson St.) to answer any of your questions regarding emergency safety initiatives.  

The International Association of Emergency Managers has more than 5,000 members worldwide and represents those professionals whose goals are saving lives and protecting property during emergencies. The first step to safety always begins with you. 

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