Help Older Adults Prepare for Natural Disasters and Emergencies

Older adults often prepare less for emergencies compared to younger adults. They may not have financial resources to put emergency supplies together, or lack enough social support to take actions to prepare.

Help ensure older adults in your community are ready in the event of an emergency or natural disaster.

Personal Preparedness Inventory

Assess the important additional resources you will need before, during and after a disaster using the Your Very Personal Preparedness Inventory guide.

Disaster preparation checklist for seniors

  • Assemble a disaster supplies kit.
  • Arrange for someone to check on you regularly.
  • Plan and practice the best escape routes from your home.
  • Plan for transportation if you need to evacuate to a Red Cross shelter.
  • Find the safe places in your home for each type of emergency.
  • Have a plan to signal the need for help.
  • Post emergency phone numbers near the phone.
  • If you have home healthcare service, plan ahead with your agency for emergency procedures.
  • Teach those who may need to assist you in an emergency how to operate necessary equipment; be sure they will be able to reach you.

For your safety and comfort, have at least three days’ worth of emergency supplies (both medical and general) packed and ready in an easy-to-carry container, such as a backpack or duffel bag. Make sure your bag has an identification tag and label any equipment, such as wheelchairs, canes or walkers that you need.

Be prepared to go to a shelter if your area is without electrical power; if there is a chemical emergency affecting your area; if flood water is rising; if your home has been severely damaged; or if police or other local officials tell you to evacuate.

In some communities, people who need help or transportation during an evacuation are asked to register that need with their local government. Call your local emergency management office for information and suggestions about what to do during an evacuation.

Two older adults

If you need to evacuate:

  • Coordinate with your home-care provider for evacuation procedures.
  • Try to carpool if possible.
  • Take your disaster supplies kit.
  • Wear appropriate clothing and sturdy shoes.
  • Lock your home.
  • Notify shelter authorities of any needs you may have. They will do their best to accommodate you and make you comfortable.

In some communities, people who need help or transportation during an evacuation are asked to register that need with their local government. Call your local emergency management office for information and suggestions about what to do during an evacuation.

If you are sure you have enough time before evacuating:

  • Shut off water, gas, and electricity if instructed to do so and if you know how.
  • Let others know when you leave and where you are going.
  • Make arrangements for pets. Animals may not be allowed in public shelters.

Your medical information list should include:

  • Your medical care providers’ contact information.
  • Names and dosages of medications you use.
  • Details about adaptive equipment and/or body system support equipment you use.
  • A list of your allergies and sensitivities.
  • Instructions for dealing with communication or cognitive difficulties.
  • Copies of your health insurance cards and related information
  • Extra copies of your prescriptions.

For more information, contact your local emergency management office.

Phone: 816-474-4240
600 Broadway, Suite 200
Kansas City, MO 64105
Translate »