In light of the Flood Warning issued for the Delaware River in Mercer County, the American Red Cross North Jersey Region offers the following advice to help Mercer County residents be ready in the event that local authorities issue an evacuation order.
Plan your evacuation route. Use local maps and identify alternate evacuation routes from home, work and/or school. Know where you are going and how you plan to get there before you leave home.
Monitor media reports for official news.
Check your Emergency Preparedness Kit. You’ll be better prepared to withstand a flood if you have the following items available – packed and ready to go in case you need to evacuate your home:
- Water—at least a 3-day supply; one gallon per person per day
- Food—at least a 3-day supply of non-perishable, easy-to-prepare food
- Battery-powered or hand-crank radio (NOAA Weather Radio, if possible)
- Extra batteries
- First Aid kit
- Medications (7-day supply) and medical items (hearing aids with extra batteries, glasses, contact lenses, syringes, cane)
- Multi-purpose tool
- Sanitation and personal hygiene items
- Copies of personal documents (medication list and pertinent medical information, deed/lease to home, birth certificates, insurance policies)
- Cell phones with chargers
- Family and emergency contact information
- Extra cash
- Emergency blanket
- Map(s) of the area
- Baby supplies (bottles, formula, baby food, diapers)
- Pet supplies (collar, leash, ID, food, carrier, bowl)
- Tools/supplies for securing your home
- Extra set of car keys and house keys
- Extra clothing, hat and sturdy shoes
- Rain gear
- Camera for photos of damage
Evacuate immediately when advised to do so.
Take your pets with you. If it is not safe for you, it is not safe for them. Red Cross emergency shelters cannot accept pets unless they are service animals. Prepare a list of family, friends, pet-friendly motels and boarding facilities that can shelter your animals in an emergency.
Review your family communication plan so you will know how to contact each other during the emergency and where to meet should you get separated. Identify an out-of-area contact person who family members and friends can call if you are separated from one another and are unable to make contact for any reason. Ask the out-of-area contact person to contact other people who care about you, to let them know your status.
If an evacuation order is issued:
If you need to evacuate, do so immediately. Follow the direction of local authorities on which routes to take, which evacuation shelters to seek, and other important advice.
Stay away from floodwaters. If you come upon a flooded road, turn around and go another way. If you are caught on a flooded road and waters are rising rapidly around you, get out of the car quickly and move to higher ground. The floodwaters may still be rising, and the car could be swept away at any moment.
For more information on flood preparedness, visit redcross.org.