NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - The City of New Orleans urged all residents and businesses to be prepared as we enter the heart of hurricane season.
The city is monitoring Invest 99-L, a tropical disturbance that could potentially impact the southeast U.S.
Develop a plan in advance to ensure that every family member knows what to do, who to call and where to go during an emergency.
1. Designate an out-of-town contact that household members can call if separated during an emergency. Ensure all family members memorize it.
2. Choose a predetermined place to reunite if separated during an emergency. Have one near home and one outside your neighborhood. Your predetermined contact will help you decide and communicate which is best.
3. Stock Up. Disasters can strike at any time and in many forms which may not require residents to evacuate, but would require them to shelter in place without power, running water or access to groceries. Gather supplies for what you'll need to weather events from boil advisories to chemical spills to Category 1 or 2 hurricanes (see list here: http://www.nola.gov/ready/hurricane/supplies)
4. Practice alternate routes out. In a disaster roads may be blocked, buses and city transportation shut down or re-routed, or streets impassable. Each family member should know all possible exit routes from you home and your neighborhood.
5. Know how you will evacuate in the case of a man-made or natural disaster, whether it be through contraflow in your own car (http://wwwsp.dotd.la.gov/Pages/default.aspx), or locating the closest evacuspot (http://www.nola.gov/ready/evacuspots/), where you can get transportation assistance out of town.
6. Get your business NOLA Ready. Apply for a reentry placard (http://reentry.nola.gov/) in case of a mandatory evacuation. Make sure your business has a continuity plan (https://www.ready.gov/business/implementation/continuity), including where you and your employees go in case of a mandatory evacuation.
The City offers multiple ways to stay up-to-the minute on information and get prepared. By visiting http://ready.nola.gov, residents can sign up for NOLA Ready alerts, which will notify residents of emergency situations including, but not limited to, evacuation information; chemical spills; shelter-in-place alerts; weather advisories; and, infrastructure issues, such as boil water advisories. Residents can tailor the alerts to specific locations, types of alerts and on which devices they will be notified.
Residents may also get accurate, up-to-the-minute information and safety tips during an emergency by following NOLA Ready on Twitter (@NOLAReady). So far, more than 100,000 people have signed up for some type of NOLA Ready emergency alert.
Residents may also get more information about how to prepare for emergency situations, such as a suggested disaster supply kit for every household, at http://ready.nola.gov.
Special Needs Registry
The City is also encouraging individuals who require special assistance during emergencies to enroll in its Special Needs Registry. The registry does not guarantee assistance, but allows first responders to appropriately plan for, prepare for and respond to community needs.
The Special Needs Registry includes all individuals, regardless of age, with a chronic condition, disability, special healthcare need, or who may require additional assistance during an emergency. These include those who:
• Use life support systems such as oxygen, respirator, ventilator, dialysis, pacemaker, or are insulin dependent;
• Have mobility disabilities and use a wheelchair, scooter, walker, cane, or other mobility device;
• Are visually impaired, blind, hard of hearing, or deaf;
• Have speech, cognitive, developmental or mental health disabilities; and,
• Use assistive animals or a prosthesis.
A family member, caregiver, or authorized representative can enroll an individual on their behalf. Residents may enroll in the Special Needs Registry by calling 311 or by visiting http://ready.nola.gov.