National Preparedness Month is observed each September and sponsored by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) within the Department of Homeland Security. National Preparedness Month encourages Americans to take steps to prepare for emergencies in their homes, places of work, schools and communities. This year’s overall theme is, “Disasters Don’t Wait. Make Your Plan Today.”

Commander, Navy Installations Command’s (CNIC) Ready Navy program educates Sailors and their families on how to be prepared when, not if, an emergency occurs.

The 2019 Atlantic hurricane season was the forth in a consecutive series of above-average and damaging hurricane seasons, featuring more than 15 named storms and eight hurricanes that caused over $50 billion in damages and at least 172 deaths. On July 4, 2019, a 6.4 magnitude earthquake occurred near Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake, California. The following day, a 7.1 magnitude earthquake occurred. Disasters happen and these incidents are reminders of how important it is to be prepared both at work and at home. Having a good plan in place save lives, time and money.

Ready Navy is a Navy-wide emergency preparedness, public awareness program to assist Sailors and families when similar disasters happen. Ready Navy is designed for the Navy community to increase the ability of every person and family on or near Navy installations to meet today’s challenges head on and prepare for all types of hazards, ranging from hurricanes and earthquakes to terrorist attacks.

Navy personnel and families are strongly encouraged to strengthen emergency planning at home and work by reading and following the tips and information found at www.ready.navy.mil and www.ready.gov.

Here are just a few of many tips to consider as you resolve to be ready:

• Make an emergency plan and discuss it with your family.

• Identify places to go in an emergency, such as a friend’s house in another area, local hotel, or public shelter.

• As you prepare for hazards, remember to keep COVID-19 safety and health measures in mind. Being familiar with the number of confirmed cases in your surrounding area could impact where you or your family might head if an evacuation was implemented.

• Keep and update an emergency supply kit; remember to include cash. Visit www.ready.gov/kids/build-a-kit for information.

• As a result of COVID-19, it is recommended by FEMA that emergency kits also include disposable gloves, hand sanitizer and face masks

• Take a current photo of you and your pet together in case you get separated during a disaster.

• Snap photos of important documents and save them in a secure place or online.

• Set up group text lists so you can communicate with friends and family during emergencies. Pick an out-of-town person for everyone to contact during an emergency.

• Take a class in CPR and first aid.

• Have back-up power sources available to charge devices in case of a power outage.

• Snap pictures of your property for insurance purposes.

• Check your insurance for coverage on disasters like floods, hurricanes, and earthquakes.

• Save for an emergency situation. Start and grow your emergency fund now by putting a small amount in your account the first of every month.

Receive alerts and warnings, report your location:

Pax River AtHoc

The recommended method of receiving alerts and warnings about adverse weather and changes to NAS Patuxent River operation conditions. Register with AtHoc from your NMCI computer by right clicking on the purple globe at the bottom right of your screen followed by left clicking “Access Self Service”

FEMA Mobile App

Download the FEMA mobile app to receive real-time alerts from the National Weather Services. Learn emergency safety tips and locate open emergency shelters in your area. https://www.fema.gov/mobile-app

Navy NFAAS

The Navy Family Accountability and Assessment System (NFAAS) standardizes a method for the Navy to account, assess, manage, and monitor the recovery process for personnel and their families affected and/or scattered by a wide-spread catastrophic event. NFAAS allows you to report your current location, update emergency personal contact information and request assistance, thereby helping Navy leadership and authorities to support you, maintain military readiness and preserve national security. Register now with NFASS at https://navyfamily.navy.mil/