One Year to Be Prepared: Month 5 Checklist

Each month during 2023, the Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe of Indians Emergency Management team will provide you a checklist for assembling emergency supplies and help you and your family think though various emergency scenarios. The monthly checklists will also prompt you to consider special circumstances, such as supplies for pets, elders, evacuation routes, and sanitation.

(For the complete list of One Year to be Prepared lists, click here)


Having a communications plan is one of the most important pieces of your emergency preparedness plan, and will help you prepare for if communicatiosn are down in your area.

Each person in your plan should know:

  • Who the out-of-area contact is for the family; their phone number should be written down and memorized
  • What to share with the contact:
    • Where you are
    • How you are
    • Where you are going, or if you are staying in one place
    • The meeting location if home is not an option
  • To send a text instead of calling if you have a cell phone. A text will often work when a voice call won’t.

Family Contact Cards

Fill out cards with the following info for each person in your plan:

  • Name
  • Phone numbers (cell, work, and home)
  • Out-of-area contact name and phone numbers
  • Family meeting place

Give a copy of the family contact card to each member of your family, and carry them at all times. Give a copy to caregivers for younger children as well.

Designate a Safe Place to Meet

In case you are unable to contact the people in your plan during an emergency, designate a safe place for everyone to go to wait for the others. If you cross a waterway for work or leisure activities, choose a location on both sides of the waterway.


  • Develop your communications plan.
  • Choose your out-of-state contact, and let them know your plan.
  • Practice your communications plan with everyone involved by creating a mock event on a specific day and time.
  • After the drill, evaluate what is missing and update your plan.

Train or Be Trained

  • Learn to use a fire extinguisher. Contact your local fire department for more information.
  • Learn to tie two types of knots and how to build a shelter. Would it keep you dry in the rain? Does the ground underneath stay dry when you test it with a hose? Will it keep wind out?
  • If you plan to use a tent instead, practice setting it up in the dark or the wind, or with one arm in case you’re injured.

Supplies: Gather or Purchase

  • Purchase an ABC fire extinguisher for your kitchen.
  • If possible, purchase fire extinguishers for each vehicle.
  • Add another three days of water, and three days worth of freeze-dried foods to your supplies.