Tag Archives: Emergency Preparedness

Prepare Yourself: It’s SC Severe Weather And Flood Safety Week

There’s a reason Gov. Henry McMaster proclaimed this week — March 4-10 — South Carolina Severe Weather and Flood Safety Week. Severe storms, tornadoes and flash floods are significant hazards in the Palmetto State. It’s important for people to develop emergency plans and be prepared to take proper safety precautions should the need arise.

The South Carolina Emergency Management Division (SCEMD) and the National Weather Service (NWS), which jointly sponsor the week, are promoting awareness of procedures that help keep you safe during floods and tornadoes.

A highlight of the week was the annual statewide tornado drill, which was conducted at 9 a.m. Wednesday, March 7.  Public schools, state and local Emergency Management, the South Carolina Broadcasters Association, and others participated. The purpose of the drill was to test communication systems, safety procedures, mitigation processes, etc.

Take action now to be prepared for any emergency. That begins by developing an emergency action plan for your home, business and other places where you spend your time. The plan should outline what you would do in case of a major emergency or disaster.

In addition, develop a communication plan that allows you to reach out to family members when normal lines of communication are not functioning. And don’t forget to have an emergency kit for your home, place of work and vehicle.

Visit the SCEMD website for more information about the South Carolina Severe Weather and Flood Safety Week as well as tips on what to do before, during and after tornadoes and floods.

DHEC, Partners to Conduct Emergency Preparedness Survey

DHEC will conduct a survey in June and July to assess the medical needs and emergency preparedness plans of coastal county residents. The survey will be conducted via telephone and online and will include a door-to-door outreach component.

“Health and environmental emergencies can happen suddenly and without warning. Having a skilled, prepared team ready to respond quickly, efficiently, and effectively can be the difference between life and death,” said DHEC Director Catherine E. Heigel. “Public assistance with this survey will ensure these dedicated professionals can capably serve their communities when emergencies strike.”

“The goal of this survey is to determine just how well-prepared people are for emergencies and to provide information to develop or enhance their individual emergency plans,” said Jamie Blair, Deputy Director of the DHEC Office of Public Health Preparedness. “By knowing on the front end if residents in an area may require special attention we are more aptly prepared to serve.”

On Saturday, June 10, members of the local amateur radio club and volunteers with the SC Public Health Reserve Corps (PHRC), the volunteer branch of DHEC that is affiliated with the National Medical Reserve Corps, will visit homes in Horry and Georgetown counties to invite residents to take the survey and to share information about how to prepare for emergencies. On Saturday, June 17, volunteers will visit homes in Charleston, Colleton, Beaufort and Jasper counties.

Volunteers will be carrying ID

All volunteers will be badged and wearing an official ID badge and PHRC vest or other attire showing their agency affiliation. They will be conducting outreach activities between the hours of 9:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. on both June 10 and June 17. Residents should ask volunteers to produce their ID badges for proper identification.

The survey will help DHEC in its response to disasters

The confidential and anonymous survey will include questions about the participants’ medical history as well as personal emergency and evacuation plans. DHEC will use the survey results to fine-tune agency response plans for future disasters that may have an impact on public health.

“People with access and functional needs who live at home are of particular concern to us, because it can be more difficult for people to evacuate if they need special assistance,” said Blair. “Many of our residents also have a medical need for electricity, and the power outages that we experience during major storms can be life-threatening for these individuals. As the state’s public health authority, we want to be sure that we’re doing everything possible to prepare people with medical conditions for emergencies and also to ensure that their needs are met when disaster strikes.”

For more information about the survey, please call Jamie Blair at 803-587-0399.

Learn more

For more information about how to prepare for emergencies, please visit:
www.scdhec.gov/HomeAndEnvironment/DisasterPreparedness/ or