National Preparedness Month is a
held each September to encourage Americans to take simple steps to
prepare for emergencies in their homes, businesses, and
Emergency preparedness also involves a set of plans
and procedures to
prepare local communities to cope with natural or man-made
To accomplish this, representatives from the Preble County General
Health District meet regularly with local and regional partners to
coordinate response plans and participate in training
the chance of a terrorist attack in Preble County is low, our county is
not immune to natural or environmental disasters.
the nation are developing plans that prepare communities to respond to
emergencies as quickly as possible.
specific information on biological, chemical, or radiation agents/fact
sheets visit the following website: www.bt.cdc.gov
Emergency Response Plan
Review the Preble County General Health District's Emergency
Response Plan below.
If you have any comments, please email Suzy Cottingim
What is the
Health District doing to protect the public and
prepare for Public Health Emergencies?
The Preble County General Health District is working with
representatives from Law Enforcement, the Emergency Management Agency,
Emergency Medical System, Fire Departments, Red Cross, county agencies,
school districts, and elected officials to develop plans that minimize
the effects of an event, improve the response times of the agencies and
maximizes the recovery of the community. Plans are
improved by "exercising" them. Exercising has many benefits
improve response during any emergency. Exercises provide
training, plan evaluation, and the inclusion of expert
resources that would be available during an emergency. The health
district hosted an exercise on March 28, 2006. Pre-exercise activities
included an informational display by the Ohio National Guard's 52nd
Weapons of Mass Destruction Civil Support Team at Eaton Fire Division,
Station #2. ONG 52nd WMD CST highlighted their capabilities
specialized equipment including laboratory capabilities, mapping and
communications systems for use during a WMD incident.The
District also presented an educational session concerning inhalation
The role of public health is to promote health in the
to prevent and control the spread of disease. The Preble
General Health District maintains on-call personnel 24/7 to respond to
public health emergency situations.
How can I prepare my
In an evacuation scenario, a family should plan to evacuate
with the maximum amount of supplies, including a tent for shelter. The
plan should also include equipment for evacuation on foot with at least
three days of supplies and rain-tight bedding (a tarp and a bedroll of
blankets is the minimum). Likely scenarios include flooding,
weather, tsunami, chemical and radiological accidents, and
war. Due to
world wide events, the US Department of Homeland Security has issued
grants to local and state health departments to develop emergency plans
of action. These response plans are designed to
and effectively train and prepare communities for disasters.
health emergencies may be the result of natural disasters or those
created by terrorist groups. It is important to have plans in
that address any type of scenario.
Although the Ohio Department of Health does not recommend
precautions for the public, it is recommended that families have a
disaster plan in place for any event such as flood, tornado, and
The following supplies are recommended:
- Three day supply of water
- Clothing, blankets and sleeping bags
- First aid kit including prescription medications
- Battery powered radio and flashlight with extra batteries
- Sanitation supplies
- Special needs items for infants, older adults or disabled family
Should an event occur it is important that you listen to the
instructions of emergency and public health workers. They will need
your cooperation to perform their duties as rapidly and successfully as
possible. For more information visit the following websites at: www.pandemicflu.gov,
Shelter in Place
(During a Hazardous Material Emergency)
What Is It?
If a toxic gas or airborne biological agent were to be
your neighborhood, would you know what to do? Shelter In
Place is a
safety procedure designed to help protect you and your family during a
serious airborne hazardous material emergency. It means
inside your home, work place, school or other building until the danger
has passed. The goal of Shelter In Place is to prevent
outside air from entering your home or other shelter for the duration
of the incident. Incidents usually last a few hours, not days
What Do I Do?
If you are told to Shelter In Place by local authorities,
please take the following safety actions:
What Do I Need?
- Close and lock all windows and exterior doors
- Turn off all air conditioners, fans and heating systems, etc, that
draw in outside air
- Close the fireplace damper
- Get your Disaster Supply Kit and make sure your radio is working
- Go to a room with the fewest windows and doors on the highest story
of your home or other shelter
- DO NOT go to the basement. Many chemicals are heavier than air and
can seep into a basement.
- Bring your pet(s) with you along with food and water for them.
- Do not overload the phone system. Use your phone (or mobile phone)
for emergency purposes only.
- Use duct tape and plastic sheeting to seal windows, doors, vents,
outlets, etc. Wet towels can also be used if you do not have plastic.
- Stay inside this room and listen to your radio or television until
local authorities tell you the emergency is over or you care told to
- When local authorities announce the end of the emergency, ventilate
your home by opening doors and windows. Go outside until your home is
You are encouraged to prepare a Disaster Supply Kit with
supplies that will last at least three days. The kit should
in a box or duffel bag in the room in which you plan to Shelter In
Place. It is a good idea to hang the bag on your bed or have it tucked
in under your bed for quick retrieval during emergencies. The
should contain the following items:
How Will I Be Notified?
- Insurance Cards
- Battery operated radio and extra batteries
- NOAA weather radio
- Water (1 gallon/person/day) and ready to eat food
- First Aid Kit
- Gloves, Goggles and dust mask<
- Flashlight and extra batteries
- Plastic sheeting (Consider measuring and cutting the plastic in
- Duct tape
- Kitchen items (non-electric can opener, eating utensils)
- Hygiene items (Plastic bucket with tight lid, garbage bags)
- Specialty items (medication, diapers, books games)
You will be notified of a serious hazardous material
emergency by one or more of the following methods:
Confinement at home
- NOAA weather radio
- Outdoor warning sirens
- Door to door notification
- Public address systems on vehicles
- The Preble County 119 emergency notification phone call system
In a home confinement scenario, a family should be prepared
survive and treat moderate medical problems for a minimum of three days
(two weeks is better) without deliveries of entertainment, food, fuel,
utilities, water, or power, or pickups of trash and sewage.
scenarios include flood, loss of bridges or roads, extreme weather,
earthquakes (which occur in all parts of the world), and civil
Entertainment is helpful. Have a selection of favorite
non-electronic toys, books and games, and enjoy them at other times so
they seem familiar and fun. Musical instruments are helpful.
Inexpensive long-lasting lighting is also helpful.
A simple balanced diet can be constructed from vitamins,
whole-kernel wheat, beans, dried milk, corn, and cooking oil (see www.fema.gov). One
should add vegetables, fruits, spices and meats, both prepared and
fresh-gardened, if possible.
U.S. Department of Homeland Security www.ready.gov
Community Preparedness Toolkit
helps citizens create a service project to prepare
their family, friends, neighbors, and colleagues for disasters
local community. For more
and to download the toolkit, visit