FEMA Launches "Prepare-A-Thon"

FEMA Launches Prepare-A-Thon

ELMIRA (WENY) -- FEMA is making sure families throughout the country are safe when emergency strikes with a national campaign launched today called Prepare-A-Thon.
     Officials here at Chemung County's Emergency Management Office say the the new initiative is a step in the right direction and they hope people take notice.
 They say the call for action can be sudden- We've experienced that several times here in the Twin Tiers over the past few years in particular. Just two Summers ago an EF-1 tornado touched down in Elmira. An EF-1 also hit Steuben County in July 2013.
     Mike Smith, Director of Chemung County Fire and Emergency Management says flooding is typically the number one concern.
     "I think anyone who has lived here for any amount of time recognized that we certainly are flood prone," said Smith. "We had little floods we had the problem in the Pine Valley, Millport, Veteran area last year that affected a fair number of homes."
     Flash flooding, tornadoes, hurricanes, the list goes on.
     "Our hope is that you can be self-sustaining for 72 hours. That if you have to leave your  home you need to take with you all the things that you would need so that you can survive  on your own for 72 hours," said SMith.
     Disaster relief experts say it's all about preparation. That's the highlight of FEMA's Call for Action today, for their first ever "Prepare-A-Thon."
     "Make a plan, understand what you need to do at your home and in your community," said Joel Robinson,  Executive Director of the Sullivan Trail Chapter of the Red Cross. "So in the event of a disaster, you're not thinking at that point 'how do I get out of my house or where do I go?'"
     And you always want to make sure you're in the loop about emergencies. Whether it's through WENY's First Warning Weather Team, a NOAA Radio, or smart phone Apps.
     There's also a Prepare-A-Thon set for the Fall on September 30, 2014 that will focus on earthquakes, hazardous materials, pandemic flu, and severe Winter weather.