Emergency Preparedness

Register your vacation/trip:  Register your vacation plans with the nearest Embassy or Consulate. In the event of an emergency, American consular officers can assist you by warning you of possible crises, keeping you updated on events in the area, helping you contact friends and family in the US, and even making evacuation plans when necessary.  To register, visit Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP)

Building A Kit: Basic Disaster Supplies Kit, Family Supply List

What can I do to protect myself during an earthquake?

  • If you are indoors, stay there. Stand under a door frame, archway, or near an inside wall or corner. Remember to stay clear of windows, bookcases, china cabinets, mirrors, and fireplaces until the shaking stops. Do not hide underneath tables or beds.
  • Cover your nose with a piece of cloth to filter as much dust as possible.
  • If you are in a high-rise apartment building, stay in the building on the same floor. Do not use the elevator. A power failure or elevator equipment failure could leave you trapped between floors. Be careful with stairs, they may be weakened.
  • As a general rule, do not run out of a building. Falling debris around a building is a common hazard.
  • Turn off gas appliances.
  • If you are outside, get into the open, away from buildings, trees, walls, or power lines.
  • If you are in your car, pull to the side of the road and stop. Do not park under overpasses (falling concrete) or power lines (electrical shock hazard) or near utility poles. Stay in your car until the earthquake is over.
  • If you are inside a car and power lines have fallen on the vehicle, do not attempt to exit the vehicle. If you are outside a car and power lines have fallen on the vehicle, do not touch or attempt to enter the vehicle.
  • If the earthquake has been severe, do not attempt to cross bridges or overpasses that may have been damaged.
  • If you find it necessary to evacuate your residence, be sure to take the following with you:
    • Medicine and first aid kit
    • Passports, other important documents, and cash
    • Food, sleeping bags/blankets and extra clothing
    • Flashlight, radio and batteries

For additional information please visit: Ready.gov – Earthquakes

What can I do to prepare for a volcanic eruption?

  • Learn the location of the active volcanoes near to you.
  • Research the area where you live and determine if your residence may be in a potential danger zone during an eruption.

What can I do to protect myself in the event of a volcanic eruption?

  • The alert levels for volcanic eruptions range from green to red in order from least concern to most concern.
  • If civil protection authorities set the alert status at “yellow,” danger is not imminent. Continue to keep yourself informed and ensure that your disaster kit is fully prepared and that your disaster plan is well rehearsed. This is an ADVISORY warning.
  • If the alert status moves to “orange,” it is imperative that you remain alert and await further information and instructions from authorities.  An eruption may be imminent. This is a WATCH alert.
  • If the alert status reaches WARNING alert, “red”, an eruption is imminent and immediate action may be required to safeguard life and property. When an eruption is happening or imminent:
    • Gather your family and ensure that all have a type of identification, in the event that your family becomes separated.
    • Ensure that the doors and windows of your home are securely closed.
    • Hang a white sheet or towel from a window, in the direction of the street, to inform emergency personnel that your residence has been evacuated.
    • Evacuate as quickly as possible to your designated safe location.
  • Following an eruption there may be a significant amount of volcanic ash in the air. Protect yourself by covering your eyes, nose, and mouth and limiting your time outdoors.
  • Only return to your home when authorities tell you that it is safe to do so.
  • Do not eat or drink anything that you might think contaminated by volcanic debris. The presence of such debris can make substances toxic.

For additional information please visit: Ready.gov – Volcanoes

What can I do to prepare for a tsunami?

  • Stay informed. In the event that a tsunami might be imminent, civil protection authorities will issue a tsunami warning. Once such a warning has been issued:
    • Move inland and to higher ground. Stay there until the tsunami warning has been lifted or until authorities inform you that it is safe to return to your home.
    • Stay away from the shoreline. If you notice water rushing away from the shoreline, this is a warning sign that a tsunami might be imminent. Do not go to the beach to observe this. Rather, head to higher ground immediately.

What can I do to protect myself during a tsunami?

  • If you find yourself unable to leave your residence, head to the highest point of your home and wait to be rescued.
  • If you find yourself in the current of the tsunami, attempt to grab hold of a tree or other sturdy object rising above the water line.
  • Stay away from flooded and damaged areas. Contaminated water and debris can pose a threat to your personal safety and wellbeing.
  • Heed any evacuation order issued by local authorities. It is in the interest of your safety to comply.
  • Stay away from damaged and flooded areas until authorities notify you that it is safe to return. Before returning to your home, ensure that it is architecturally sound. Should you need assistance in doing this, contact your local authorities.

For additional information please visit: Ready.gov – Tsunamis