ARC urges South Georgians, have a plan - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

ARC urges South Georgians, have a plan

July 13, 2005

Dougherty County- When Piney Woods Creek flooded Monday, Mary Mann grabbed her video camera.

"I was shocked. I came out and the whole street was flooded and the pen back there was flooded, it just kept rising and rising," said Mann.

Recent rains from Hurricane Dennis caught many off guard. The American Red Cross is urging resident to have a disaster communication plan.

"We left just before it got as bad as it was going to get and I thought I was going to come back to everything floating in there, so yeah, I seriously need something, need a plan," said Mann.

A family communication plan lets everyone know who to call when disaster strikes and communication is often difficult.

"To have one family member who lives out of state or friend who is the central communications point for everybody," said Daniel Churchman, American Red Cross Disaster Services Director.

It was one of the first things Mary did.

"I had told my family that lives out of state that I was going to have to be leaving because the place was flooding, so they knew how to get ahold of us on my cell phone," said Mann.

The Red Cross says, you should also remember some important things before you leave the house. Take a photo id, medication, and cash. You should also have an emergency kit with enough supplies for 72 hours.

"How much water you need to have on hand, food that won't spoil, a manual can opener, electric can opener won't work if the power's out, the medications, water and food for your pets," said Churchman.

It's something more Mary's thinking about and plans to have ready for future disasters.

"Get ready to get out, I think I'm going to get me a preparedness package that all I have to do is grab it and run," said Mann.

Many disaster shelters don't allow pets. The American Red Cross says you should plan ahead for their care if you must evacuate. You can also contact the American Red Cross for information on an emergency plan.

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