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FEMA, Governor McAuliffe Declare September National Preparedness Month

FEMA, Governor McAuliffe Declare September National Preparedness Month

 The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has declared September as National Preparedness Month (NPM).  This year’s theme is Don't Wait. Communicate. Make Your Emergency Plan Today.

NPM weekly focused themes

  • Week 1:  Sept 1-5th            Flood
  • Week 2:  Sept 6-12th          Wildfire
  • Week 3:  Sept 13-19th        Hurricane
  • Week 4:  Sept 20-26th        Power Outage
  • Week 5:  Sept 27-30th        Lead up to National PrepareAthon! Day (September 30th )


Through its emergency preparedness website Ready.gov, FEMA is asking everyone to take action now and make a plan to stay safe during and after a disaster. Each week during the month of September the site will focus on tips for specific disasters as part of America’s PrepareAthon. The PrepareAthon’s goals are to increase the number of individuals who:

  • Understand which disasters could happen in their community
  • Know what to do to be safe and mitigate damage
  • Take action to increase their preparedness
  • Participate in community resilience planning

The month will conclude with a national day of action, National PrepareAthon! Day, September 30th.

Governor Terry McAuliffe has proclaimed September as National Preparedness Month in Virginia and he encourages business owners, families and communities to be ready for emergencies. 

“September has historically been the most active time of the year for hurricanes in Virginia,” Governor McAuliffe said. “Whether it’s a natural disaster like a hurricane or a human-caused emergency like terrorism: individuals, families and businesses that take the time to prepare are more resilient in the long run than those who failed to plan.”

Everyone can prepare for all emergencies, including hurricanes, by taking these steps:

National Preparedness Month Logo

  • Sign up for text alerts/weather warnings that may be offered by your locality. 
  • Download the free Ready Virginia app for iPhone® and Android™.  Features:
    • Weather warnings issued for your location by the National Weather Service
    • A customizable emergency plan that can be easily shared with family and friends
    • A checklist for gathering emergency supplies 
  • Have basic supplies on hand to last at least three days for each family member, including pets
    • Food that won’t spoil, such as canned and packaged foods
    • Water, one gallon per person per day
    • A working battery-operated radio and extra batteries
    • Flashlights with extra batteries
    • First aid kit
    • A written list of your prescriptions and prescribing doctor(s) and at least a week’s supply of medications
  • Create a family emergency communications plan. 
    • Decide how and where everyone will meet up with each other if separated
    • Choose an out-of-town emergency contact for your family and give that person’s phone number to each family member
    • Make a sheet of emergency contacts and post it in visible places in your home and workplace.  Don’t rely on your smart phone or online contact lists.
    • Get a free emergency plan worksheet and emergency contact cards at www.ReadyVirginia.gov or www.ListoVirginia.gov or use the new Ready Virginia app.

People with disabilities or access and functional needs may need to take additional steps. Plan how to handle power outages and/or being asked to evacuate. For more information, visit www.vaemergency.gov/readyvirginia/getakit/disabilities.