When I was growing up, it was viewed as almost paranoid to worry about natural disasters. Although I grew up in Michigan – a state known for severe storms and occasional tornadoes – few people had natural disaster plans. Oh sure, we would have tornado drills every once in a while, where everyone would file out into the hall and sit with their head bowed in front of the wall, but for the most part, no one really cared.
With all of the hurricane disasters as well as earthquakes and tsunamis lately, we’re sure you would agree that weather conditions have changed drastically all over the world. They have certainly changed in areas like New Orleans, Houston, Florida and the Caribbean which were profoundly affected by record breaking flood and wind disasters. There also have been substantial changes in places that were not directly affected by these unusual weather events. With the threat of global warming and increases in unpleasantly cold weather conditions, people are aware that it is a pretty scary time in some ways. Natural hazards that have always been with humanity are likely to get worse as time goes on, driven by a lesson less stable global atmosphere.
Fortunately, there is a lot you can do as far as natural disaster preparedness goes. The most important thing is to assess the risks as realistically as possible. Most regions are only at risk for one or two sorts of natural disasters, so you should figure out what might affect you. It is always good to be prepared for flooding, and earthquake preparedness is extremely important if you live near a fault line. You can have your house checked for seismic preparedness, and do research about emergency routines in your area.
Of course, alongside natural disasters, the risk of terrorism may be higher than before. Although there has still only been one major terrorist attack on American soil, that doesn’t mean that there couldn’t be more some time in the future. Basically, the supplies you use for natural disasters – food, clothing, and emergency shelter and medicine – can usually be used if you have to cope with a terrorist attack as well. Be sure to keep an emergency radio as well as a flashlight with extra batteries handy.