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Emergency Preparedness

Be Prepared

A severe snowstorm, an ice storm, or a lengthy power outage are examples of emergencies that can happen unexpectedly. Each community in Ontario has an emergency plan to respond to these situations, but do you? The first 72 hours of an emergency are critical as emergency responders will be dealing with the immediate and life safety responses. Be prepared to be self-sufficient for a least those 72 hours. Take the first steps by talking with your family and creating a plan. Expecting the unexpected will give you and your family peace of mind and the ability to remain calm if a disaster does occur.

Know the Risks

In Canada, we face many types of risks that can result in emergencies. Knowing the specific risks in your area is critical to help you plan. Your local municipality can assist you further with understanding the risks to your community.

We look at public health risks that impacts both human and environmental health during small incidents or emergencies to assist us with planning and response.

Make a Plan

Taking the time to create a plan provides peace of mind.

Make an Emergency Kit

An emergency kit will always have some basic supplies. Ensure that your kit is easily accessible and easy to carry.

Here is how to get started on your kit:

Keep Key Numbers Ready

Post emergency telephone numbers and addresses near the phone. In the event of an emergency, use the phone only if it's critical.

Lines should be kept for emergency officials and those who need help.

Know Your Community Evacuation Locations

You can find out ahead of time from your municipality the location of emergency shelters and if there are any designated emergency routes. In case you or other family members get separated, make arrangements with someone who lives outside of your immediate area who will act as a central point of contact for your family members.

Ensure all family members have the phone number and know the call. You should also have a pre-determined meeting place away from your home in case your home is affected by an emergency situation and family members get separated.

During an evacuation, residents may be asked to go to a community centre or to the next town. Listen to the radio for evacuation orders and trust the authorities. If an order is given, follow all directions and go quickly to the specified location. Remember to bring your survival kit with you. Don't forget to include arrangements for pets, since they are not permitted in shelters and many hotels.

Listen to Weather Warnings

Environment and Climate Change Canada monitors weather conditions 24 hours a day. It issues weather watches, advisories, and warnings through national, regional, and local radio and television stations, or through their WeatherCAN app, so make sure you listen and watch local or regional stations or sign up to receive the latest weather conditions.

  • A Weather Watch alerts you that conditions are favourable for the development of severe weather. Watch the skies and listen for updated watches and possibly weather warnings.
  • A Weather Advisory means actual or expected weather conditions may cause general inconvenience or concern but does not pose a serious threat to warrant a weather warning. An advisory may also be used when conditions show signs of becoming favourable for severe weather when the situation is not definite enough or too far in the future to justify a warning.
  • A Weather Warning alerts you that severe weather is occurring or that hazardous weather is highly probable. Severe thunderstorm or tornado warnings may be issued less than one hour in advance. Other weather warnings may be issued six to twelve hours in advance.
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