Earlier this month, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) added a noteworthy new feature to their free smartphone app, which pushes notifications to users’ devices to remind them to take important steps to prepare their homes and families for disasters. I think someone should come up with an app to remind dog owners to feed their pets.
The FEMA app reminds users about:
- Pre-scheduled safety and preparedness tips
- Routine smoke alarm testing
- Fire escape plan drills
- Emergency kit updates
- Smoke alarm battery replacement
“In just two minutes, a home fire can become life-threatening,” said U.S. Fire Administrator Ernest Mitchell Jr. “Remembering to take small steps to prepare, such as ensuring your smoke alarm is properly maintained and practicing your home fire escape plan, will reduce fire fatalities and ensure our communities are safer. We hope this new feature to FEMA’s app will help save lives by encouraging more families to be prepared.”
At the RJWestmore Training System by Universal Fire/Life Safety Services, we are committed to pointing our subscribers to helpful disaster preparedness information from a variety of reputable sources, including FEMA. What’s more, we have recently tweaked our own offerings, so our subscribers can e-train at their convenience, on desktop computer, laptop or iPad. Those are great options for millennials, since they spend a lot of time on their devices.
For their part, FEMA officials tout their new app reminder feature, saying it provides a customizable checklist of emergency supplies, maps of open shelters and open recovery centers, and offers tips for surviving natural and manmade disasters. The app also incorporates push notifications of weather alerts from the National Weather Service. Through the feature, users can stay on top of weather patterns for up to five national locations.
Other key features of the app:
- Weather Alerts: Users can elect to receive alerts on severe weather happenings in specific areas, so users can follow potential weather-related threats to family and friends.
- Safety Tips: Includes tips about how to stay safe before, during, and after more than 20 types of hazards, including floods, hurricanes, tornadoes and earthquakes.
- Disaster Reporter: Users can upload and share disaster-related photos.
- Maps of Disaster Resources: Users can locate and receive driving directions for open shelters and disaster recovery centers.
- Apply for Assistance: The app provides easy access to federal disaster assistance applications.
- Information in Spanish: The app defaults to Spanish-language content for smartphones set to Spanish as the default language.
- Dog Treat Reminders. Okay, I admit this isn’t one of their features, but I think it would be a great addition.
The latest version of the FEMA app is available for free in the App Store for Apple devices and Google Play for Android devices. Users who already have the app downloaded on their device should download the latest update for the reminder alerts feature to take effect. The reminders are available in English and Spanish. To learn more, visit: The FEMA App: Helping Your Family Weather the Storm.
Remember that safety is a daily priority. So be sure to think about ways to #BeSafe all of the time. A convenient and affordable way to make sure you are prepared for disasters and emergencies of virtually every kind is to subscribe to the RJWestmore Training System by Universal Fire/Life Safety Services, which has been designed to help improve and save lives. For more information about the best system out there, or to subscribe, click here.