FORT LEE, Va. (Aug. 26, 2016) -- Planning for the worst is a no-brainer when you consider the recent weather events such as the historic flooding in southeast Louisiana.

National Preparedness Month in September draws attention to the wisdom of making an emergency plan for any crisis, said Defense Commissary Agency Sales Director Tracie Russ.

"Whether it's natural or manmade, a crisis doesn't conveniently occur on schedule," Russ said. "So during National Preparedness Month we remind our patrons that they can use their commissary benefit and save money to prepare their survival kits."

Since April 1, DeCA's severe weather preparedness promotional package is offering various items at reduced prices until Oct. 31. This package includes: beef jerky and other assorted meat snacks, soup and chili mixes, canned goods, powdered milk, cereals, batteries, airtight bags, weather-ready flashlights, tape (all-weather, heavy-duty shipping and duct), first-aid kits, lighters, matches, lanterns, candles, hand sanitizer and anti-bacterial wipes. Specific promotional items may vary from store to store.

"The flooding in Louisiana has displaced thousands of people and emphasizes to us all the importance of being ready for the unexpected," Russ said. "Thanks to our industry partners, commissaries are offering savings on many of the items our patrons need in an emergency."
National Preparedness Month coincides with the peak activity for hurricanes in the United States. The Atlantic hurricane season runs from June 1 through Nov. 30, covering the North Atlantic Ocean, the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico.

The emphasis on being prepared is echoed by the theme, "Don't Wait, Communicate. Make Your Emergency Plan Today," which encourages people to create an emergency plan and share it with their loved ones.

Commissary patrons can go to https://commissaries.com/disaster_prep.cfm to learn more about specific disaster preparedness resources for emergencies.

Generally, emergency preparedness officials suggest having a disaster supply kit that includes the following items:
• Water -- at least one gallon daily, per person (three-day supply for evacuation, two-week supply for home)
• Nonperishable foods -- canned meats, fruits, vegetables, dried fruits, nuts, raisins, cereal, crackers, cookies, energy bars, granola, peanut butter, and foods for infants and the elderly (three-day supply for evacuation, two-week supply for home)
• Paper goods -- writing paper, paper plates, paper towels and toilet paper
• Cooking items -- pots, pans, baking sheets, cooking utensils, charcoal, a grill and a manual can opener
• First-aid kit -- including bandages, medicines and prescription medications
• Cleaning materials -- bleach, sanitizing spray, and hand and laundry soap
• Specialty foods -- diet and low-calorie foods and drinks
• Toiletries -- personal hygiene items and moisture wipes
• Pet care items -- food, water, muzzle, leash, carrier, medications, medical records, and identification and immunization tags
• Lighting accessories -- flashlight, batteries, candles and matches
• Battery-powered or hand-crank radio (NOAA Weather Radio, if possible)
• Duct tape, scissors
• Multipurpose tool
• Copies of personal documents (medication list and pertinent medical information, proof of address, deed/lease to home, passports, birth certificates and insurance policies)
• Cell phone with chargers
• Family and emergency contact information
• Extra cash
• Emergency blanket
• Maps of the area
• Blankets or sleeping bags
For more information about National Preparedness Month, go to http://www.ready.gov/September and http://www.ready.gov/considerations/military-family-preparedness.

For more information on preparing for emergencies, go to the following websites:
the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/prepare/ready.php and http://www.nws.noaa.gov/com/weatherreadynation/prep.html;
the Centers for Disease Control, http://emergency.cdc.gov/preparedness/index.asp; the Red Cross, http://www.redcross.org/prepare/disaster; and the Federal Emergency Management Agency, http://www.ready.gov/hurricanes.