Mar 28, 2012 6:38 PM by Andy Koen

Conifer fire highlights need for emergency preparedness

A large scale disaster could be closer you than you think. One in four people in Colorado Springs live in high fire danger areas and emergency managers want all of us to keep a 72-hour kit on hand in the event of a quick evacuation.

The kit should have enough food and supplies to sustain your family for at least three days. To build a kit, start with non-perishable foods. Then add extra medications and some personal hygiene products. It should also include a first aid kit, safety items like a flash light and matches and even an extra set of keys.

Brett Waters, Emergency Manager for the City of Colorado Springs, says the kit not only gives you peace of mind, but also the ability to help friends and neighbors when they're in crisis.

"In a large emergency we're just not going to get the response that we're used to because the resources are taxed," Waters said.

It's also a good idea to contact your insurance agent and review your policies at least one a year.

"We accumulate things over years," said Cally O'Donnell, an Allstate agency owner. "If we were to put down on paper, how much was that worth, we have no idea nor do we have an idea of what we have."

She says their online Digital Locker can make that home inventory process easier.  "Just go from room to room and take photos of your stuff," O'Donnell said.

Allstate isn't alone. Many insurance companies have iphone and android apps that can help store personal property inventories.

The Colorado Springs Fire Department also regularly teaches emergency preparedness courses. The next group of classes will be held in May. Click here to view the schedule and register.

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