The New York State Department of Health issued the following tips for New Yorkers in preparation of the effects from Hurricane Sandy, which may hit the region early next week, according to a news release from Gov. Andrew Cuomo's office:
Have plenty of non-perishable food and water supplies on hand. Make sure battery-operated radios and flashlights are available and have an ample supply of batteries. Hand-cranked flashlights and radios that do not need batteries may also be useful. Have a first aid kit available and make sure there is adequate supply of medicines on hand for those who require it.
Know how to contact all family members at all times. Identify an out-of-town friend or family member to be the "emergency family contact." Then make certain all family members have that number. Designate a family emergency meeting place where the family can meet in case you can't go home.
Pay particular attention to relatives with special needs, small children and pets. Know where to relocate pets during a storm because many shelters are not able to accept pets. Shelters often only accept "service animals" that assist people with disabilities.
Prepare an emergency phone list of people and organizations that may need to be called. Include children's schools, doctors, child/senior care providers, and insurance agents.
Follow the news and emergency broadcasts of local radio and television stations that will provide up-to-date official information during a storm emergency, including recommendations to evacuate specific areas.
Find out what emergency plans are in place in your community and how you will be notified in the event of an emergency.
Know the hurricane risks in your area and learn the storm surge history and elevation of your area.
Store important documents such as insurance policies, medical records, bank account numbers, and social security cards in waterproof containers. Also have cash (in small bills), a checkbook, and credit/ATM cards readily available.
New Yorkers can get up to date information at governor.ny.gov and following our office on Twitter @NYGovCuomo. The public can also receive notifications via email, text and phone call through the state's notification system, NY-Alert by going to NYalert.gov to sign up for free.