Despite Sandy Battering, New Yorkers Unprepared for New Storms

Study shows just under half of residents have some kind of preparedness plan.

File photo.
File photo.
Written by David Reich-Hale

Sandy’s wrath has area residents on alert for what meteorologists predict could be another active hurricane season, but many respondents to a new survey said they’re not as prepared as they should be in case another storm slams into the East Coast.

A Weather Channel/American Red Cross poll showed that while 56 percent of New York and New Jersey coastal residents were very or somewhat concerned about being in harm’s way, only 49 percent said their Sandy experience has led them to plan for future storms.

“Hurricane Sandy should erase any doubt that our region is not vulnerable to coastal storms,” said John Miller, chief executive of the Red Cross on Long Island, in a statement.

Miller added that residents should create a family evacuation plan, get needed supplies and medications.

The survey, which polled 1,412 residents of coastal counties from Texas to Maine, also reported that one in five households has a member with a health issue or a disability and one quarter of those households are not confident they have planned to meet these medical needs in an emergency.

Also, local television news remains the most popular source of emergency information, followed by one of the survey’s sponsors - The Weather Channel.

The American Red Cross has issued recommendations to help residents prepare:
  • Create an emergency preparedness kit with food and water and other basic supplies for each family member to last at least three days. Be sure  to include essential medications, copies of important documents and special items for children and pets.
  • Plan what to do in case you are separated from your family during an emergency and what to do if you have to evacuate. Coordinate with your child’s school, your work and community’s emergency plans.
  • Be informed about what disasters or emergencies may occur where you live, work, play and pray, and how to respond as safely as possible. Find out how local officials will contact you during a disaster and how you will get important information.
  • Download any of the Red Cross free disaster-specific mobile apps by going to http://www.redcross.org/prepare/mobile-apps.


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