Preparation and Proactivity Essential for Severe Weather Awareness
MERIDIAN TOWNSHIP - Spring has arrived in Michigan, and warmer temperature brings a greater risk of severe weather.
Ingham County Deputy Emergency Manager Rob Dale says the best way to prepare for severe weather is to plan ahead--one step at a time.
"One month, just prepare for water, get enough water for your family to survive for three days, and another month will be food," said Dale. " We also talk about pet care. Get the food for your pets. One month is medication, so what kind of medicines do you need if you have to be evacuated from your home you have to have with you. So we tell people take one thing at a time, and over the course of the year you'll have developed a really good safety kit."
Technology has made it easier for people to be prepared.
"The advantage that we have today is most people carry a phone" said Meridian Township Fire Chief Fred Cowper. "They have weather on there or they have the ability to turn on the TV, listen to the radio, whatever it might be to get...to have warning that there might be a change."
It's important to remember the government cannot fix everything.
"People think the government is going to come in and fix everything, and if you were around in the ice storm of 2013, we can't do that," said Dale.
But citizens can minimize damage by being proactive.
"Definitely what you want to do... the first thing is make sure everybody is ok, that there are no injuries, because you want to take care of those first," said Lori Conarton of the Insurance Institute of Michigan. "If everything is ok, one of the things we suggest is to minimize further damage, so if you have windows out, board those up and just make sure that you prevent any further damage from happening. "