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Disaster Preparedness on Display in Bloomington

Teaching people how to keep themselves safe

BLOOMINGTON - Over the past year, Central Illinois has seen the face of disaster on a grand scale. The Emergency Expo at the Interstate Battery Center in Bloomington is trying to prepare residents for the next big storm.

"A disaster can be anything; it's just not a tornado or weather but fires, accidents in vehicles, farm accidents” said Assistant EMA Director Bob Clark.

Health departments, police, fire, even the National Guard worked to make sure people have a plan.

John Witcomb of the American Red Cross says an emergency kit can be the difference between life and death.

"A lot of people might not think about, they may have a whole lot of canned food, but it would be real nice if you had a non-electric can opener to open up those cans. What we want to do is make people aware that they will get help, but help is sometimes hours away."

Children had a chance to get hands on experience with some of the emergency vehicles.

Clark explained "They can check things out, touch it, feel it, hear the sirens, look at the lights, and just be able to answer questions and talk to the first responders."

Because when it comes to an emergency, a roadmap is everything.

"We educate the public to follow the Boy Scout motto, be prepared" says Clark.

Every emergency kit should contain food, water, and a flashlight.

For more information on building and maintaining an emergency kit got to http://www.redcross.org/prepare/location/home-family
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