EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS

The R.M. of Meadow Lake needs volunteers!

The R.M. is looking for residents throughout the Municipality to assist in the area of Emergency Social Services. Emergency Social Services includes providing for registration of people who have been evacuated or relocated from a disaster area, establishing an inquiry centre and providing food, shelter and clothing for those in need. Volunteers are needed to help provide information about the various facilities, organizations and resources available in the communities within the R.M. of Meadow Lake. Training will be provided for all volunteers. Your knowledge of your community and willingness to share your time to prepare a resource list is the key to a successful plan. Disasters can strike anywhere at anytime; preparation is needed to mitigate the hardships that occur.

If you can help please contact:  Brian Ritco at 236-5871
Emergency Measures Coordinator.
Thank you.

Be Prepared for an Emergency or Disaster In Your Community.

Develop a Family Emergency Plan

Emergency planning can help to ensure an effective response to emergencies and disasters. Have a family meeting to discuss potential emergency situations. Talk about what each family member should do in different situations.

Develop your plan based on an assessment of the kinds of emergencies that can occur in your province, territory, and community. Natural events can include winter storms, floods, or tornadoes. Secondary events, such as water-induced landslides and toxic spills, can exacerbate a weather-related event and prolong a state of emergency. While the emergency incident may vary, the elements of an effective response are often the same.

Ensure elderly family members who may not live with you are included in your emergency plan.

Conduct a hazard audit of your home. Review fire safety features such as smoke detectors and how to monitor them. Check for frayed electrical cords or overloaded circuits. Don?t keep flammable materials near electrical equipment or your furnace. Learn how to safely turn off main water and electrical switches in your home. Locate the safe areas in your home in case of a tornado (i.e. interior bathrooms, closets, lowest floor level).

Select a predetermined meeting place if a fire or other event forces your family out of your home. Ask someone outside your immediate area to act as a central point of contact for your family members, relatives, and friends in an emergency.

Maintain a list of the family?s required medications, giving generic names and prescribed dosages. List the name and telephone numbers of family doctors. For those who use pacemakers or other medical equipment, keep the style, serial number, and other pertinent information with you at all times.

Keep family records, such as mortgage documents, medical records, insurance policies, birth certificates, marriage licenses, wills, stock and bond certificates, and tax records in one central location so that they can be easily accessed in the event you must leave the area quickly. Keep all papers in a waterproof container.

Keep treasured items such as family photo albums in a place where they can be quickly accessed if you must leave your home in a hurry.

Maintain a Supply of Food and Emergency Items

An emergency could isolate you in your home for several days. Try to ensure you have a five-day supply of food and water for each family member. Rotate foods into your regular pantry supplies and replace stored water every few months.

Other items you may want to keep stocked in your home for emergency use:

  • special medicines or foods required by members of your family, such as insulin, prescription medications, baby food, or food required for
  • special diets
  • solar, crank, or battery-powered radio and flashlight in working order and extra batteries for each first aid kit and manual
  • all-purpose fire extinguisher (rated A-B-C)
  • waterproof matches
  • candles and tin can
  • a five-day supply of canned, packaged, or non-perishable food items for each member of the family
  • a five-day supply of water for each member of the family sealed in unbreakable containers (replace stored tap water every few months)
  • a catalytic heater (usually kerosene or propane). Follow instructions carefully and ensure there is adequate ventilation to avoid build-up of
  • hazardous fumes when using any kind of fuel. Install a carbon monoxide sensor (battery-operated).

If an Evacuation is Imminent, Consider Adding these Items to your Emergency Supplies:

  • warm and waterproof clothing
  • extra food, based on the specific requirements
  • money and credit cards (money machines may not be working)
  • toys to comfort and amuse the children (favorite toy, stuffed animal, cards)
  • reading materials for adults
  • pet food
  • sleeping bags or blankets in a waterproof bag

If You Expect to be Evacuated From Your Home or Workplace:

  • Do not assume an evacuation will last only a few hours. Plan to evacuate with enough items to keep your family comfortable for at least five days.

If an emergency is imminent:

  • Keep phone lines open for use by emergency workers. Monitor local radio broadcasts for emergency instructions and current information.
  • Assemble the food and supplies you plan to take with you. Refer to lists of family medications, records, and irreplaceable items. (See
  • Develop a Family Emergency Plan).
  • Keep your car fueled.
  • Turn off main water and electrical switches before leaving home.
  • Follow local government instructions. If you are asked to evacuate, do so promptly. Travel only on routes recommended by your local government.
  • An emergency reception centre may be set up to provide food and shelter to people affected by an emergency. If you are going somewhere other than the reception centre, advise the centre, local government, or police of your whereabouts.

After the Emergency or Disaster

The dangers associated with a disaster are not over once the floodwaters have receded or the tornado has passed. Ensure you and your family is safe by following the advice below:

  • Don?t visit the disaster area. You may hinder rescue efforts.
  • Monitor local media reports for when it is safe to return to your home. They can also provide other post-incident advice and assistance.
  • Drive carefully and watch for debris, dangling or broken wires and damaged bridges and roads. Report problems to police or fire departments.
  • Use extreme caution. Wait until you are advised by authorities that it is safe to enter buildings that may have been structurally damaged.
  • Use only battery-powered lanterns or flashlights to examine your home for damage which may contain flammable items. Do not use candles or matches.

Check for leaking gas pipe in your home. If you smell gas:

  • immediately open windows and doors
  • turn off the main gas valve
  • leave the house
  • go to another location and notify the gas company, police, and fire department
  • do not re-enter the house unless you are advised by the authorities that it is safe to do so

If electrical appliances are wet (and you are NOT wet or standing in water) turn off the main power switch. Then unplug the wet appliances and let them dry before checking for visible damage. If there is no damage, reconnect the appliances and turn on the main power switch.

If the fuses blow when the power is restored, turn off the main power switch again and look for short circuits in your home wiring, appliances, and equipment. If a problem still exists, call your utility company.  Follow you local health authority?s instructions concerning the use of food and water supplies. Any food affected by lack of refrigeration, chemicals, or floodwaters should be discarded.  Check to see that sewage lines are intact before flushing toilets.  Report damaged water, sewage, and gas lines to the proper authorities.  Notify your insurance agent or broker immediately if your property was damaged.

The emotional impacts of disasters on those affected are well known. Pay attention to your feelings and those of your family members. Local mental health services are usually able to provide assistance in coping with trauma resulting from a disaster.