September is National Preparedness Month09/18/2017September is National Preparedness Month, and the Allen County Office of Homeland Security is encouraging citizens in the community to get involved. National Preparedness Month serves as an opportunity for Allen County residents to prepare their households for an emergency or disaster. Listed below are some safety tips to consider this September: - Become aware of disasters that could occur in the local area, and discuss possible scenarios with family members. Include events such as fires, natural disasters and man-made disasters. - Create and maintain a list of emergency contacts and share it with family members. If possible, designate a non-local friend of family member as a contact, as local communications systems may be overloaded locally during a disaster. - Know how to turn off utilities such as gas and electricity in the event of a disaster. Gas leaks can be harmful to an entire neighborhood if not properly addressed. - Discuss safety information with colleagues in the workplace or students on campus, and be aware of evacuation routes in these facilities. - Make sure that all important documents such as Social Security cards and bank statements are accounted for and readily available in the event of an evacuation. Also, consider making digital copies of these documents, and make sure they’re secure and accessible. Allen County residents should also consider putting together an emergency preparedness kit. These kits can help to make sure family members have the essentials during a disaster. Listed below are key items to include in a kit: - Non-perishable food items such as protein bars, peanut butter and baby formula for infants.- One gallon of water per person per day.- Battery-operated flashlights and radios, along with additional batteries.- First aid kits that include items such as adhesive bandages, scissors, over-the-counter pain reliever and antibiotic ointment.- All-hazards radio.- Essential medication.