Santa Rosa to hold public disaster planning event May 16-19

by Santa Rosa County PIO

Santa Rosa County is embarking on a PrepareAthon, a week-long preparedness initiative with FEMA to help communities become more resilient through hazard-specific drills, group discussions, exercises and more. As part of this initiative, Santa Rosa County Emergency Management is planning a series of preparedness actions in coordination with National Hurricane Preparedness Week, including registering for the GeoCast emergency notification system, learning about flood risk and planning for evacuation.

“The Santa Rosa County PrepareAthon! will engage SAFER members, businesses, schools, government offices, and volunteer and faith-based partners to support the campaign and participate with their stakeholders, said Daniel Hahn, Santa Rosa County Emergency Management plans chief. “By combining our efforts and working together as a whole community, we hope to increase the level of preparedness of our partners and all residents within Santa Rosa County.”

Topics for Santa Rosa County’s PrepareAthon week include:

Monday, May 16 – Stay informed and know what disasters can happen in your community. Sign up for Geocast emergency notifications and news releases through Santa Rosa County, download smart phone apps for free disaster alerts through the Red Cross and make sure your government alerts are activated in your smart phone’s notifications settings.

Tuesday, May 17 – Conduct an insurance check-up with your insurance company. Make sure you have enough homeowners insurance to repair or even replace your home. Don’t forget coverage for your car or boat. Remember, standard homeowners insurance doesn’t cover flooding. Whether you’re a homeowner or renter, you’ll need a separate policy for it, and it’s available through your company, agent or the National Flood Insurance Program at www.floodsmart.gov. Act now as flood insurance requires a 30-day waiting period. If you can’t afford to replace it, you need to insure it.

Wednesday, May 18 – Statewide hurricane exercise. Santa Rosa County and partnering agencies will participate in a statewide hurricane exercise at the Emergency Operations Center with small scenarios including a tornado drill, tsunami and flood.

Thursday, May 19 – Tour your local first responder facility from 5 to 7 pm.
• Emergency Operations Center, 4499 Pine Forest Rd., Milton
• Lifeguard Ambulance Service, 4340 Avalon Blvd., Milton
• Pace Fire Station Volunteer Fire Department – 4773 Pace Patriot Blvd., Pace
• Berrydale Volunteer Fire Department – 13000 Hwy. 87 N., Milton
• Bagdad Fire Rescue – 7100 Windwood Ln., Milton
• Holley-Navarre Fire Station 41 – Manatee & Sunrise St., Navarre
• Holley-Navarre Fire Station 45 – 8618 Esplanade St., Navarre
Friday, May 20 – Make an evacuation plan. Learn several evacuation routes from your home and business. Develop a family communications plan in the event you are separated and share before disaster strikes.

Saturday. May 21 – Attend the SAFER Santa Rosa Alien Invasion Expo. The event is free and will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Gulf Breeze Community Center, 800 Shoreline Drive. See the latest mitigation tools and disaster services including generators, disaster supply kits, storm windows/doors and insurance.

For more information, contact Daniel Hahn, 850-983-4606 To learn more about disaster awareness and how you can prepare, visit Santa Rosa County Emergency Management or FEMA’s PrepareAthon!

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