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Island County > DEM > Preparedness

Personal & Family Preparedness

​The Department of Emergency Management provides information about hazards that might impact Island County.  The likely hazards are analyzed in the Island County Hazard Identification and Vulnerability Assessment or HIVA.

There are many things that people, families, and businesses can do to prepare themselves for the impact of a natural or man-made disaster or emergency.  Many aspects of preparedness are common to all hazards. 

Being prepared can reduce fear, anxiety, and losses that accompany disasters. Communities, families, and individuals should know what to do in the event of a fire and where to seek shelter during severe weather.  They should be ready to evacuate their homes and take refuge in public shelters and know how to care for their basic medical needs.

People also can reduce the impact of disasters (flood proofing, elevating a home or moving a home out of harm’s way, and securing items that could shake loose in an earthquake) and sometimes avoid the danger completely.

Disasters disrupt hundreds of thousands of lives every year.  Each disaster has lasting effects, both to people and property.

If a disaster occurs in your community, local government and disaster-relief organizations will try to help you, but you need to be ready as well.  Local responders may not be able to reach you immediately, or they may need to focus their efforts elsewhere.

You should know how to respond to severe weather or any disaster that could occur in your area—hurricanes, earthquakes, extreme cold, flooding, or terrorism.

You should also be ready to be self-sufficient for at least three days.  This may mean providing for your own shelter, first aid, food, water, and sanitation.

Family Preparedness Resources

Emergency Preparedness Guide 

The Emergency Preparedness Guide is great resources for providing information on local hazards as well as:

  • Building your Emergency Kit
  • Developing your Family Plan
  • Staying Informed
  • Getting Involved


Emergency Preparedness Guide

Preparedness for People with Disabilities

Prepareness for Older Americans


Preparedness for Pets


Make a Plan

Make a plan with your family to get through an emergency. Think about the things you need every day and work out what you would do if you didn’t have them. Click here to open the planning template. Print the form, fill it out, stick it on the fridge and make sure everyone knows the plan.

As many of us spend a great deal of our time at work, it is also important to have a plan should an emergency occur during working hours. Click here to open the planning template to help develop your personal workplace emergency plan.



Local Preparedness Groups


Island County

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Whidbey Office
1 NE 7th Street
Coupeville, WA 98239

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121 N East Camano Dr
Camano Island, WA 98282

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District Court: (800) 946-9765

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