Canyon County


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Emergency Preparedness
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Individual and Family Emergency Preparedness

The next time disaster strikes, you may not have much time to act.  Prepare NOW for a sudden emergency.  Learn how to protect yourself, your family and your home.  Cope with disasters by planning ahead. 

The following information will assist you in getting started.  Discuss these ideas with your family, then create a family emergency plan.  Post the plan where everyone will see it!  You can get more information by viewing the Disaster Preparation Handbook . If you have special needs in an emergency, this handbook has useful information on preparedness for people with mobility or visual disabilities, hearing impairment and other special medical needs.

You can also become better prepared to respond to disasters and emergencies through training. FEMA offers over 100 free on-line training courses through their Emergency Management Institute (EMI).  This training can help you, your family, your neighborhood and our community be better prepared when if disaster strikes.

For further training opportunities, please contact the Canyon County Office of Emergency Management. Remember you may be traveling when you experience some type of emergency.  Be prepared while away from home.  Make sure you have an emergency kit in your vehicle.  Don't forget your pets.  You need to take the necessary precautions to protect them during an emergency.

Here are some steps you can take to prepare yourself and your family for a disaster in our area:

First,you need to know what disasters are most likely to occur in your area. Certainly here in the Treasure Valley, we don't have to worry about hurricanes or tsunamis.  We can, however, experience very high winds,flooding, earthquakes, hazardous material spills, severe winter storms, and wild fires.  Next, your family needs to develop an emergency plan, including a family communication plan.

Once you have it developed, you need to review it frequently with your family and practice it, especially on how to safely exit your home in case of a fire. 


  • Discuss with children the dangers of fire, severe weather, earthquakes, and other emergencies.

  • Discuss how to respond to each disaster that could occur. 

  • Discuss what to do about power outages and personal injuries.

  • Draw a floor plan of your home. Mark two separate escape routes from each room.

  • Learn how to turn off the water, gas and electricity.

  • Post emergency telephone numbers near telephones.

  • Teach children how and when to call 9-1-1.

  • Keep family records in water and fire proof containers.

  • Instruct household members to tune your radio to local radio and television stations for information.

  • Pick an out-of-state and one local friend or relative for family members to call if separated during a disaster. (It is often easier to call out-of-state than within the affected area).

  • Pick two meeting places: One near your home, in case of a fire. A second outside your neighborhood, in case you can not return home after a disaster.

Once you have your emergency plan developed, then you need to make sure you have emergency supplies on hand.  Time and time again, experience shows that it will take at least 72 hours for emergency workers to get into neighborhoods.  An essential part of your emergency preparation should be to assemble the supplies you and your family might need to shelter in place or quickly evacuate.  Store your emergency kits in an easy-to-carry container, such as a backpack or duffel bag.  If you are asked to evacuate, you can put your emergency kits in your car. 

Here are some things you should consider in your 72-hour kit:

  • A supply of water (one gallon per person, per day).  Store water in sealed, unbreakable containers. Replace every six months.

  • A supply of non-perishable packaged or canned food and a non-electric can opener.

  • A change of clothing, rain gear and sturdy shoes.

  • Blankets or sleeping bags.

  • First aid kit and prescription medications.

  • An extra pair of glasses.

  • A battery-powered radio, flashlight and plenty of extra batteries.

  • An extra set of car keys.

  • A list of family physicians.

  • A list of important family information; the style and serial number of medical devices, such as pacemakers.

  • Phone numbers for emergency contacts.

  • Special items for infants, elderly or disabled family members.

  • A whistle (used to call emergency workers to your location).

  • A charged extra battery for your cell phone.

  • Cash and credit card.

Red Cross Preparedness Fast Facts

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1115 Albany St. Caldwell, Idaho 83605 | Phone: (208) 454-7300