Gov. Baker Declares September ‘Emergency Management Month’

FRAMINGHAM – September has been officially declared Emergency Preparedness Month in Massachusetts by Governor Charlie Baker.

The Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) and the Department of Public Health will promote public safety preparedness through the month with various outreach programs.

The initiative is part of a month-long nationwide campaign that to encourage citizens to better prepare themselves, their homes, workplaces, and communities for an emergency.

“We’re dividing it up into a few different themes and this week is the first theme,” explained MEMA Spokesman Christopher Besse.

“This week’s theme is really around being informed about the potential risks and about being aware of alerts to stay safe.”

MEMA is urging Massachusetts residents to be aware of the potential natural or manmade emergencies that could happen in the places you live and work.

Massachusetts is susceptible to floods, hurricanes and tropical storms, tornadoes, coastal storms, severe winter weather, extreme temperatures and other natural hazards.

The state is also prone to man-made disasters including nuclear power plants incidents, hazardous waste incidents, terrorism, transportation accidents and more.

“It’s still the middle of hurricane season and there’s some storms still out there that everyone will be keeping an eye on as it gets a little closer to the coast,” Besse explained.

“But it’s not just related to hurricanes, it’s a lot broader and really just a mindset of preparedness and wanting people to think about the things they may need in a variety of different hazards.”

The agency also encourages citizens to enable themselves to receive emergency alerts about these potential safety hazards. MEMA says every family should have multiple methods for receiving emergency alerts, especially those with an audio component.

Some primary sources to receive emergency updates listed by the agency include wireless emergency alerts that deliver alerts via cell phone, Massachusetts’ 2-1-1 number – the state’s primary information phone center.

“There’s a lot of preparedness tips that people can use really no matter what the impact is or where the hazard is coming from. The basic steps of being informed, having an emergency plan and emergency supplies. People can use those in a variety of different scenarios,” said Besse.

MEMA is a state agency charged with keeping the Commonwealth prepared to withstand, respond to, and recover from all types of emergencies and disasters.

The agency also ensures the state’s ability to rapidly recover from large and small disasters by mitigating threats and hazards, enhancing preparedness, ensuring effective response, and strengthening the state’s capacity to rebuild and recover.

By TIM DUNN, News Center 

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