Ideally every resident in your neighborhood will be as prepared as you are, and you will be very well prepared. If all of your neighbors' homes are hardened against fire, there is much less risk of fire reaching your home. If all of you neighbors have emergency food and water, there are more resources to help each other with when some homes are too damaged to enter.
The "next level" of strong preparedness is simply working together as a neighborhood to watch out for each other in a disaster. If half your neighbors are not home when an earthquake hits, who will check on their children and pets? If your neighborhood is evacuated due to an approaching wildland fire, and your family are all away from home, will somebody grab your pets?
As a neighborhood, you can coordinate bigger things. You can create better evacuation routes. You can make a list and check on EVERYONE after an earthquake. You can gather critical information for the next level of first-responders: your region's CERT Team. You can develop skills like Light Search & Rescue, CPR and FIrst Aid that will help you manage small problems before they become large, life-threatening problems.
Organize Your Neighborhood
Getting your neighborhood prepared for an emergency starts with simply having neighborhood meetings a few times each year, more if you can. WFPD-Ready will help you identify risks, organize your neighbors, develop your plans, and become better prepared. We give a regular single-session class in "Personal and Neighborhood Preparedness" to get you started. We will follow up with all of the guidance and consulting you need to get as prepared as you want to be. Just having a team of neighbors who know the needs of the entire neighborhood can save lives. Helping all your neighbors to be personally prepared makes your entire neighborhood harder to "take out" in a disaster.
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Create a Neighborhood Watch
Having a strong Neighborhood Watch program gets you most of the way to having a well-prepared neighborhood. The neighbors you watch out for during normal times, when there is no emergency, are the same people you will want to help in a disaster. If you already have a Neighborhood Watch program in your neighborhood, talk to them about becoming a "Neighborhood Watch and Emergency Preparedness" group. If there is no Neighborhood Watch in your area, now is a good time to start it, and include Emergency Preparedness right from the start.
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