Seriously, Brooklyn, do you have a Go Bag?

OEM wants you to get ready to bug out

September 6, 2014 By Mary Frost Brooklyn Daily Eagle
On Friday,  OEM handed out a few basic Go Bag supplies, plus advice and literature at Brooklyn Borough Hall.
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Military personnel have them in their airplanes. Spies have them under the floorboards. And the NYC Office of Emergency Management (OEM) wants you to have one, too.

What they’re talking about is a little bag full of emergency supplies you can grab in case of an emergency, called a Go Bag (or if you’re a spy, a bug-out bag).

Though it’s mild in New York right now, September is usually the peak of hurricane season and there’s no telling what disaster is lurking around the corner.

September is also National Preparedness Month and on Friday, OEM handed out a few basic Go Bag supplies, plus advice and literature at an event in Brooklyn Borough Hall. Similar events were held across all five boroughs.

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The bright yellow booth in the plaza was emblazoned with the words, “Are You Ready, New York?” Visitors walked away with T-shirts, mini-flashlights, pens and handy information including the new hurricane evacuation zones map.

A 2013 OEM survey found that about a third of New Yorkers “do not feel prepared for an emergency, such as a natural disaster, fire, power outage or act of terrorism.” Besides the Go Bag, OEM wants New Yorkers, especially families, to create an emergency plan.

“Families need to discuss their emergency plans together, and to think through the necessary steps to take during and after an emergency,” said OEM Commissioner Joseph J. Esposito in a statement.

Esposito and Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Administrator Craig Fugate kicked off the event in Manhattan’s Herald Square.

“The first step to preparing for disasters is simple and it’s free – talk to your family and make a plan,” Fugate said. “Do you know how you’ll reunite and communicate with your family during an emergency?”

There are roughly ten important categories of supplies that you’ll need to pack.

Throughout the month of September, the New York City Citizen Corps has planned preparedness events across the city. OEM is also hosting a collection drive through September 30th to help put together donated Go Bags for those who need them. People should donate LED flashlights, first-aid kits, plastic rain ponchos, hand sanitizer, whistles, and small battery-operated radios.

For advice on how to make a disaster plan, assemble emergency supplies at your home and see the city’s new hurricane evacuation map, visit

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