General Preparedness

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Are You Prepared? 

Are you prepared for A Home Emergency?

Santa Clara County is offering free online and in-person classes on Disaster Preparedness, Home Safety, Fall Prevention and Wellness Resources, and Be Ready for a Medical Disaster during the months of July thru December 2023. Visit the link below to sign-up for a free 1 1/2 hour class!

Join Us! Sign-up Here

Disaster Distress - Mental Health Information

When disaster strikes, often people react with increased anxiety, worry, and anger. With support from community and family, most of us bounce back. However, some may need extra assistance to cope with unfolding events and uncertainties.

For additional information and resources related to disaster behavioral health visit SAMHSA.

Emergency Preparedness Information for Older Americans and Special Needs

Each person's needs and abilities are unique, but every individual can take important steps to prepare for all kinds of emergencies and put plans in place. By evaluating your own personal needs and making an emergency plan, you can be better prepared for any situation. A commitment to planning today will help you prepare for any emergency situation. Preparing makes sense. Get ready now.

 Older Americans and Special Needs Emergency Preparedness Plan

Local Hazard Mitigation Plan

The Santa Clara County Local Planning Team with representatives from the Town of Los Gatos identified 25 possible hazard threats within the county boundary. Santa Clara County’s Office of Emergency Services is collaborating with the incorporated cities to update the countywide local hazard mitigation plan. This plan outlines mechanisms for increasing our community’s resiliency to natural hazard events.

Hazard “mitigation” is defined as "sustained action taken to reduce or eliminate the long-term risk to human life and property from natural, human-caused, and technological hazards and their effects."

The local hazard mitigation plan will be an annex to the regional plan titled "Taming Natural Disasters: Multi-Jurisdictional Local Hazard Mitigation Plan for the San Francisco Bay Area".

 Preparing for a disaster is easier than you might think. It only takes three simple steps to better prepare you and your household for any type of emergency or disaster: 1. Stay Informed, 2. Pack a Kit, 3. Have a Plan.

1. Stay Informed

Staying informed of impending hazards, evacuations, road closures, and shelter locations is imperative to you and your family’s safety. Before, during, and after a disaster, the Town of Los Gatos will be communicating through our Town Website, NotifyMe and multiple social media accounts, including: Facebook, Nextdoor, Twitter, and Instagram.

Links to Town Website, NotifyMe Sign Up Town Facebook Page, Town Twitter, Town Instagram, and Nextdoor homepage.

However, if power fails, you could lose access to your cell phone data and wifi, so have a battery or hand-crank radio in your Go-Bag to find out what is going on. 

ALERTSCC, Emergency Alert and Warning System

 Alert SCC Logo

AlertSCC is a free and easy way to get emergency alerts sent directly to your cell phone or mobile device, landline, or email. Alerts can include: 

  • Fire
  • Earthquake
  • Severe weather
  • Crime incident that affects your neighborhood
  • Instructions during a disaster
  • Post-disaster information about shelters, transportation, or supplies

Your ability to receive fast, accurate information can help you survive in an emergency.
 AlertSCC can send text or voice messages to cell phones, home phones, personal digital assistants (PDA’s), laptops, desktop computers, and TTY/TDD devices for the hearing impaired. 

Link to register for AlertSCC

2. Pack a Kit

Put together your emergency supply kit, or Go Bag, long before a disaster strikes. A Go Bag is a small, portable bag or backpack to grab on your way out the door during an evacuation. It is suggested to keep one in your car for when your neighborhood has been evacuated, but you aren’t home. It’s also a good idea to pack a separate Go Bag for yourself and every member of your household to keep in an accessible location. Pack each person’s bag with their specific, essential items. And don’t forget to personalize your bag with items that will entertain or comfort you. How about a child’s stuffed animal, a pack of cards, a good book, or even candy?

Link to Make a Go Bag Checklist

*PRO-TIP: If you need to purchase supplies, pick one item to purchase each time you go grocery shopping.

graphic of backpack with emergency supplies around it

Ready to take your preparedness to the next level?

Check out the list from FEMA for to build a full kit at home: Link to FEMA’s emergency supply checklist

ReadySCC, Santa Clara County’s Emergency App

ReadySCC is a FREE, mobile App that can help prepare you and your family for disasters. Use ReadySCC to build up emergency supplies and store vital emergency contacts and links to resources. The app also includes what you need to know about common disasters within Santa Clara County, such as earthquakes, floods and wildfires as well as local services, resources, and tools (a flashlight, SOS beacon and alarm) that you may need during a disaster. ReadySCC is FREE and available from the App Store to download to an iPhone or iPad and from Google Play for download to an Android device.

Link to ReadySCC Webpage

3. Have a Plan

Picture of a family planning for a disaster

If you must evacuate your home, be ready by creating an evacuation plan that includes:

  • A designated emergency meeting location outside the hazard area. This is critical to determine who has safely evacuated from the affected area.
  • Several different escape routes from your home and community. Practice these often so everyone in your family is familiar in case of emergency.
  • An evacuation plan for pets and large animals such as horses and other livestock.
  • A Family Communication Plan that designates an out-of-area friend or relative as a point of contact to act as a single source of communication among family members in case of separation. (It is easier to call or message one person and let them contact others than to try and call everyone when phone, cell, and internet systems can be overloaded or limited during a disaster.)
  • Keep multiple copies of your communication plan in school backpacks, cars, and wallets in case electronic storage cannot be accessed.

Link to Family Communication Plan

Always keep a sturdy pair of shoes and a flashlight near your bed and handy in case of a sudden evacuation at night. If you must evacuate your home, items to take if time allows:

  • Easily carried valuables
  • Family photos and other irreplaceable items
  • Personal computer information on hard drives and disks
  • Chargers for cell phones, laptops, etc.

Planning for Recovery

Recovery from any hazard that has destroyed some or all of your home is easier if you have an accurate home inventory. Document the contents of your home before a fire occurs. Use your smartphone to video your belongings. Keep your inventory & photos stored outside the home or in the cloud.

  • Tip 1: Video or photograph each room of your home
     Remember to document drawers and closets.
  • Tip 2: Describe your home’s contents in your video
     Mention the price you paid, where and when you bought the item.
  • Tip 3: Remember to note important or expensive items
     Video your electronics, appliances, sports equipment, TVs, computers, tablets.
  • Tip 4: Save receipts for major purchases
     Store key documents in the cloud or in a fireproof case. Keep home inventory off-site or in the cloud.
  • Tip 5: Video the Garage
     Don’t forget to video or photograph what is inside your garage.