Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Be prepared for any kind of disaster or emergency

Disasters can strike at any time, so being prepared is extremely important. Find out how you can prepare for emergencies of all kinds at the fifth annual Disaster Alley this Sunday, May 4. Hosted by the Calgary Emergency Management Agency (CEMA), the event will be held from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at McMahon Stadium (1817 Crowchild Trail N.W.) rain or shine.

Come out and see how first responders and partner agencies prepare for emergencies and disasters such as floods, tornadoes, train derailments, airport shutdowns, power outages and severe summer and winter storms. And find out how youcan be prepared.

“I recommend everyone come down to Disaster Alley; emergencies can occur quickly and preparation is the key to protecting yourself and your loved ones,” says Tom Sampson, Deputy Chief of CEMA. “Know the risks, make a plan, and have a 72-hour emergency kit. It could save your life.”

Public transit recommended

This informative event is free and fun for the whole family and will include some of Calgary’s favourite food trucks. Parking is limited, so taking public transit is recommended.

CEMA will be handing out Household Emergency Action Plan booklets at the event, along with a checklist of what you need to include in a 72-hour emergency preparedness kit.

“The first 72 hours of a disaster are the busiest for emergency services,” says Deputy Chief Sampson. “If you are not in distress, you can help by taking care of yourself and your family for the first 72 hours, which will free up first responders to help those who need it most.”

Mayor Nenshi to speak at 1 p.m.

Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi and other dignitaries will address the crowd at 1 p.m. Before and after, you are encouraged to visit with the more than 30 different exhibitors who will have interactive displays and demonstrations set up in the east parking lot of McMahon Stadium.

Sit inside an official Calgary Police Service (CPS) cruiser or check out the CPS HAWCs helicopter. The CPS canine unit and mounted patrol will also be on hand to showcase how they respond to emergencies.

The STARS helicopter will be there and also the Calgary Fire Department’s Aquatic Team.

Building a culture of preparedness

Disaster Alley is Calgary’s kick-off event for Emergency Preparedness Week (May 4-10), which is a national initiative designed to build a culture of preparedness in Canada.

CEMA works with other City departments, corporations, communities and non-profit agencies to facilitate a coordinated response to and recovery from emergencies and disasters. CEMA also works to increase our capacity to be prepared, become less vulnerable, and recover more quickly from a disaster, leading to a stronger, more resilient community.

For more information on Disaster Alley 2014, visit Calgary.ca/disasteralley.

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