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Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Kit Checklists, Plan Templates Available Online at

PEMA: Build-Your-Own Emergency Kits Make Great Holiday Gifts

Kit Checklists, Plan Templates Available Online at

Harrisburg – This holiday season, the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency is encouraging residents to give the gift of emergency preparedness to family and friends.

“There’s really no greater gift than giving someone the means to save their own life,” said PEMA Director Robert P. French. “A first-aid kit, a hand-crank flashlight and radio, copies of emergency kit checklists and family emergency plan templates would make a unique and very useful gift for loved ones and friends.

“Also consider creating a small emergency kit for the car; an absolute ‘must-have’ for anyone who travels the roads during the winter.”

French said preparedness is critical because after a disaster or emergency occurs, first responders will not be able to assist everyone right away due to overwhelming demand for help. Residents should be prepared to survive on their own for at least three days or until emergency services can reach them.

“Purchasing a ready-made home and vehicle emergency kit may be out of reach for some households,” French said. “So, the holidays make a great time to start building gift kits with essentials such as consumables, radios and flashlights, medications and first-aid supplies. Later, recipients can add personal items like books, games and toys to fit their family’s needs.

“And while the whole family is gathered for the holidays, take time to discuss how you’ll communicate with each other in an emergency, and where you’ll meet up if you can’t get back to your home. Planning now will lessen the stress of an emergency,” French added.

The commonwealth’s ReadyPA campaign encourages citizens to take three basic steps: Be Informed, Be Prepared, Be Involved. More detailed information, including downloadable emergency kit checklists and emergency plan templates, is available online at or by calling 1-888-9-READY-PA.

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