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For over 115 years, The Salvation Army has been providing Emergency Disaster Services around the world. We are passionate about our work supporting first responders and those affected by disasters such as fire, earthquake, flooding and other crises.

The Next Disaster Is Coming. Do You Know What to Do?

It's important to know how to prepare, stay aware, and take action to keep yourself and your family safe. With planning, knowledge, and supplies, you can prepare for just about any emergency or disaster that might strike. Download our Disaster Preparedness eBook.


Three Essential Elements of Surviving a Disaster

Each disaster is different, of course, presenting unique risks that you need to be aware of. But there are basics that will serve you well in any situation you might find yourself in. With the right tools and the right information, you can keep yourself and your family safe.

1: Create an Emergency Kit
  • A gallon of water per person per day for at least three days
  • A three-day supply of nonperishable food
  • Radio
  • Flashlight with extra batteries
  • First aid kit
  • Signal whistle
  • Dust mask for contaminated air
  • Plastic sheeting and duct tape
  • Towelettes, garbage bags, and ties for sanitation
  • Pliers and some basic hand tools
  • Can opener
  • Local maps
  • Cell phone with charger
2: Create a Communication Plan

The first concern is the safety of your family and loved ones. Because your family may not be together when a disaster strikes, it’s vital to create a network of communication to ensure that everyone is accounted for and safe.

You and your family members should have:

  • Each other’s phone numbers
  • School and workplace names, addresses, and phone numbers
  • Procedure for who will contact who. It’s sometimes faster to send a text instead of talking on phone lines that may be overloaded in an emergency
  • Known locations of where to go and meet in an emergency
3: Create an Evacuation Plan

A fire or flood is the typical reason for an evacuation. But other disasters, like industrial accidents, can also require evacuation.

In some cases, evacuation is mandatory. In others, it’s optional. The amount of time you have to react will depend on the disaster. You’ll have more time for weather emergencies like hurricanes, but many other disasters require immediate evacuation. That’s why planning is vital.

Here’s what to do:

  • Use your Communication Plan (above) to know in advance how you will contact your family members and where you will meet.
  • Keep your car in good repair and try to have at least a half tank of gas at all times. If you don’t have a car or don’t drive, make arrangements with family members or neighbors.
  • Familiarize yourself with evacuation routes in advance to avoid confusion
  • Leave early. If you wait too long, you may reduce your options or be forced to remain in place.
  • Take your Emergency Kit with you.



Get Our eBook

View and download our e-book on preparing for the next disaster. In addition to the three essential elements of surviving a disaster, the eBook also goes into more detail about preparing for specific types of disasters - including house fires. Our eBook also includes worksheets for you and your family to fill out, which will help you become disaster-ready!




Did You Know?

Get more information about Salvation Army Emergency Disaster Services. Thank you.