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How to prepare for an emergency

Last Updated Mar 30, 2017 at 1:32 pm MDT

PHOTO. supplied. The Government of Canada has a 72 hour Emergency Preparedness guide that elaborates on the three steps of knowing the risks, making a plan and getting a kit to be prepared for any emergency.

The Here for You public information session on March 29, 2017 gave residents of the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo (RMWB) the chance to meet the new Fire Chief, Jody Butz.

At the session residents had the opportunity to learn about emergency preparedness and the plans Butz has for the 2017 wildfire season.

Butz said that to prepare for the season the fire department has replenished all of their equipment from last year and also added wild land fire equipment.

“We learned last year during the wildfire that we need to become more mobile,” said Butz,”we also added a sprinkler trailer and that is going to compliment our normal response.”


As always, subject matter experts were on hand to answer other recovery questions and address any concerns.

Assistant Deputy Chief For Emergency Management, Chris Graham talked about the three ways residents could prepare for any emergency situation:

  1. Know the risks
  2. Make a plan
  3. Get a kit

“72 hour preparedness talks about knowing the risks, knowing what the potential is that something may occur, how close it might be and knowing your surroundings. Having a plan, being aware and talk to your family members. Know the ways out of your house and out of your communities and last is having a kit, have something that you could take that is already sitting there, ready to go.” Said Graham. 

The RMWB website notes that the three emergencies that residents should be prepared for are winter storms, flooding, and wildland urban interface fires.

You can stay up-to-date on the latest wildfire activity in the RMWB and across the province of Alberta by downloading the Alberta Emergency Alert App.

Pre-made emergency kits are available  the Canadian Red Cross and at Canadian Tire or you could make your own for yourself and family.

There is lots of information on what you can include in different types of kits such as a home kit, evacuation kit, a kit for your pet(s) and one to keep in your vehicle on the RMWB website.


  • Cash and credit cards-include smaller denominations.
  • Ready-to-eat and high-energy food for at least 3 days.
  • Manual can opener.
  • Bottled water or water container with at least 4 litres per person per day for at least 3 days.
  • Water-purifying tablets.
  • Lanterns, flashlights (with extra batteries), glow sticks.
  • Candles with matches.
  • Wind-up/battery-operated radios, extra batteries and alternate heat sources.
  • First aid kit.
  • Whistle (for each member of the family).