With heavy rains causing flooding in parts of the state, the New Mexico Department of Health and the New Mexico Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management are urging residents to remember emergencies, whether natural disasters or man-made, can happen suddenly in any community.
Almost any type of emergency can have an impact on health.
“The flooding concerns we’re experiencing in New Mexico now are a good reminder of how important it is to be ready for an emergency,” said Department of Health Secretary Retta Ward, MPH. “It’s important for families to have a plan in place in case of an emergency. It’s also good to have extra food, water and medicine in your home. .
Governor Susana Martinez has issued a proclamation declaring the month of September 2013 as National Preparedness Month across New Mexico.
“National Preparedness Month is a great opportunity for New Mexicans to take a moment to evaluate their residences to ensure they are ready in the event of a disaster,” said Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management Secretary Greg Myers. “With the ongoing monsoonal activity, citizens should take steps to ensure they are prepared.”
As always, the best time to prepare for an emergency is before it happens. By taking some simple steps, families can decrease the risk of illness and death during an emergency.
According to national preparedness guidelines, New Mexicans should be prepared to make it on our own for at least three days during an emergency by following these three easy steps:
- Get a Kit: Keep enough emergency supplies on hand for you and your loved ones - things like bottled water, foods that won't spoil, a first aid kit, extra medicine, flashlight, battery-powered radio and extra batteries.
- Make a Plan: Work together with loved ones, trusted neighbors, co-workers and others on an emergency plan.
- Be Informed: Learn about emergencies most likely to occur in New Mexico, how to prepare for them, and what to do if they happen in your area.
If you are under a flood watch or warning safety recommendations include:
- Gather the emergency supplies you previously stocked in your home and stay tuned to local radio or television stations for updates.
- Have your immunization records handy or be aware of your last tetanus shot, in case you should receive a puncture wound or a wound becomes contaminated during or after the flood.
- If you have to leave your home, make sure you take your prescription medications with you.