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The Dirt | Emergency Preparedness Tips #2

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Whether it’s an ice storm, a wildfire, or another natural disaster, volunteers from Benton County Community Emergency Response Team (BCCERT) have been trained to help their neighbors respond. Pam Wilson is a retired teacher and a trained BCCERT member who has created this blog post series to help Benton County residents prepare for emergencies. This is the second installment.

To continue the process of preparing for an emergency, here are six steps you can take this week – that’s about one item per day.

1. Resilient Futures 2021
AARP Oregon developed this virtual conference on community preparedness. View recordings of the four sessions, each about one-hour long. Topics include being ready, developing a disaster game plan, neighborhood planning, and the link between wellness and resilience.

2. Wildfire Insurance
Call your insurance agent to make sure you are covered for wildfire; not just for house fires. I’d been told some families in the Santiam Canyon were unpleasantly surprised to find wildfires had been excluded. If you are not sure, a phone call to your agent is easy. I was covered but a friend in town found their rentals were not.

3. Grab and Go Documents
Gather ALL your important documents together like titles, policy numbers, passwords, wills, birth certificates, etc. This week, I’m moving them to one place to grab and go. You can also take photos and save to a flashdrive.

4. Video Inventory
This week’s goal is to video-tape rooms for an easy inventory. This makes insurance claims easier during a time of crisis.

5. Water
Water is always on my mind. I intend to get three gallons into the vehicle we would evacuate with. For more information about how much water to store, see this pamphlet from FEMA.

6. Learn More
Two references for those of you ready for a little more guidance: