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Emergency Preparedness /  Prepare for Emergencies

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How can I be better prepared for an emergency?

Disasters are never a planned event and always come at the most inconvenient time so why not plan now? Below is a simple checklist you may follow to better prepare yourself to deal with an unforeseen emergency.

Prepare an Emergency Plan that will serve as a simple reminder, such as:

  • Meet with household members. Discuss with children the dangers of fire, severe weather, earthquakes, and other emergencies.
  • Discuss what to do about power outages and personal injuries.
  • Learn how to turn off the water, gas, and electricity at main switches.
  • Post emergency telephone numbers near phones.
  • Teach children how and when to call 911, police, and fire.
  • Pick one out-of-state and one local friend or relative for family members to call if separated by disaster (it is often easier to call out-of-state than within the affected area).
  • Keep family records in a water and fireproof container.
  • Download a copy of an Emergency Planning Sheet.

Prepare a Supply Kit to be available in the event you are affected by an emergency that includes:

  • A supply of water (one gallon per person per day). Store water in sealed, unbreakable containers. Identify the storage date and replace every six months.
  • A supply of non-perishable packaged or canned food and a non-electric can opener.
    A change of clothing, rain gear, and sturdy shoes.
  • Blankets or sleeping bags.
  • A first aid kit and prescription medications.
  • An extra pair of glasses.
  • A battery-powered radio, flashlight, and plenty of extra batteries.
  • Credit cards and cash.
  • An extra set of car keys.
  • A list of family physicians.
  • A list of important family information, e.g. the style and serial number of medical devices such as pacemakers.
  • Special items for infants, elderly, or disabled family members.

Home Hazard Hunt

In a disaster, ordinary items in the home can cause injury and damage. Anything that can move, fall, break, or cause a fire is a potential hazard.

  • Repair defective electrical wiring and leaky gas connections.
  • Fasten shelves securely.
  • Place large, heavy objects on lower shelves.
  • Hang pictures and mirrors away from beds.
  • Brace overhead light fixtures.
  • Secure water heater. Strap to wall studs.
  • Repair cracks in ceilings or foundations.
  • Store weed killers, pesticides, and flammable products away from heat sources.
  • Place oily polishing rags or waste in covered metal cans.
  • Clean and repair chimneys, flue pipes, vent connectors, and gas vents.

If You Need to Evacuate

  • Listen to a battery powered radio for the location of emergency shelters. Follow instructions of local officials.
  • Wear protective clothing and sturdy shoes.
  • Take your Disaster Supplies Kit.
  • Lock your house.
  • Use travel routes specified by local officials.


If you are sure you have time…

  • Shut off water, gas, and electricity, if instructed to do so.
  • Let others know when you left and where you are going.
  • Make arrangements for pets. Animals may not be allowed in public shelters.

Prepare an Emergency Car Kit, include:

  • Flashlight and extra batteries
  • Blanket
  • Booster cables
  • Fire extinguisher (5 lb., A-B-C type)
  • First aid kit and manual
  • Bottled water and non-perishable high-energy foods such as granola bars, raisins, and peanut butter
  • Maps
  • Shovel
  • Tire repair kit and pump
  • Flares

Fire Safety

  • Plan two escape routes out of each room.
  • Teach family members to stay low to the ground when escaping from a fire.
  • Teach family members never to open doors that are hot. In a fire, feel the bottom of the door with the palm of your hand. If it is hot, do not open the door. Find another way out.
  • Install smoke detectors. Clean and test smoke detectors once a month. Change batteries at least once a year.
  • Keep a whistle in each bedroom to awaken household members in case of fire.
  • Check electrical outlets. Do not overload outlets.
  • Purchase a fire extinguisher (5 lb., A-B-C type).
  • Have a collapsible ladder on each upper floor of your house.
  • Consider installing home sprinklers.

The Town of Amherst has a Fire Safety Division to address all fire safety needs, (716) 631-7142.

About Amherst

The Town of Amherst was established in 1818 and celebrates its 200th Anniversary this year. The town has a geographical area of 53.6 square miles and a population of greater than 122,000.

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The Town of Amherst ADA Coordinators are Robert McCarthy (Director of Human Resources) and Brian Andrzejewski (Commissioner of Buildings).

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  • General Information:
    (716) 631-7000
  • Email:
    toainfo@amherst.ny.us
  • Address:
    Municipal Building (Town Hall)
  • 5583 Main Street
  • Williamsville, NY 14221