Preparing for Disaster: Starting Now

Original Airdate: 
April 2013

Download: Utah Emergency Preparedness Guide (PDF 1.2mb)

A geological feature known as the Wasatch Fault spans from Southern Idaho to Central Utah. Roughly 80 percent of Utah's population lives along the fault, often in unreinforced masonry homes such as brick.

The one-hour documentary includes interviews with the victims of the Christchurch, New Zealand earthquakes, Hurricane Sandy and the Herriman, Utah wildfires. From their stories, along with advice from emergency experts, viewers learn practical tips for starting their own personal emergency plans.

Taking an all-hazards approach to emergency preparedness, Preparing for Disaster demonstrates how to create emergency communication plans, and walks viewers through the process of building a 72-hour kit. The program also highlights community efforts to organize and prepare, including a look at the earthquake plan at Salt Lake City's Madeleine Choir School.

Build or Purchase a 72 Hour Kit

Information reposted from

After a major disaster the usual services we take for granted, such as running water, refrigeration, and telephones, may be unavailable. Experts recommend that you should be prepared to be self-sufficient for at least three days. Store your household disaster kit in an easily accessible location. Put contents in a large, watertight container (e.g. a large plastic garbage can with a lid and wheels) that you can move easily.

Your basic emergency kit should include:

  • Water – one gallon per person per day
  • Food – ready to eat or requiring minimal water
  • Manual can opener and other cooking supplies
  • Plates, utensils and other feeding supplies
  • First Aid kit & instructions
  • A copy of important documents & phone numbers
  • Warm clothes and rain gear for each family member.
  • Heavy work gloves
  • Disposable camera
  • Unscented liquid household bleach and an eyedropper for water purification
  • Personal hygiene items including toilet paper, feminine supplies, hand sanitizer and soap
  • Plastic sheeting, duct tape and utility knife for covering broken windows
  • Tools such as a crowbar, hammer & nails, staple gun, adjustable wrench and bungee cords.
  • Blanket or sleeping bag
  • Large heavy duty plastic bags and a plastic bucket for waste and sanitation
  • Any special-needs items for children, seniors or people with disabilities. Don’t forget water and supplies for your pets.

Utah Preparedness Resources

State of Utah Department of Emergency Services Utah Department of Health
Be Ready Utah Utah Citizen Corps / CERT Training
Utah’s Medical Reserve Corps Programs Utah Chapter, American Red Cross
Utah Emergency Preparedness Guide
(Link to our booklet as a PDF)
Rocky Mountain Power (Outages & Emergencies)
(877) 548-3768
Questar Gas (Line breaks, Leaks, and Odors)
(800) 541-2824

Emergency Planning

Daily Bread, Freeze Dried Food Storage Build a 72 Hour Kit
Family Emergency Plan

National Resources

FEMA Guide to Citizen Preparedness Federal Emergency Management Agency
U.S. Department of Homeland Security American Red Cross
National Organization on Disability U.S. Department of Education
U.S. Fire Administration Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
National Disaster Education Coalition

After the Disaster

Recovering from Disaster Family and Friends Safe and Well Registration
Mobile Phone Use During an Emergency
56 minutes
Closed Caption: 
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