While FEMA Responds to Quakes, the CDC Responds to Zombies

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It’s true. Well, mostly — the quakes and zombies are not real, but the responses are, and that’s what’s key.

Zombies do not want your emergency preparedness kit. Good thing, because yours can keep you alive. Image: CDC

We wrote yesterday about how FEMA is responding to the NLE2011 (National Level Exercise 2011) which is a simulated massive earthquake which “struck” the central U.S. Monday. The make-believe catastrophe is testing the skills of  state and local officials, plus federal officials and agencies at all levels. Everyone from the various governors of included states to community-level emergency responders are being tested to see how all the pieces fit, intermix and relate — and handle the stressors of a massive disaster. And let’s not forget the real-life emergency problems involving flooding rivers and widespread tornado damage. And the zombies.

Because as FEMA launched its multi-state NLE2011, the Centers for Disease Control‘s Ali Khan warned of how to prepare for a zombie attack*. Timing is everything, as they say.

But really, the two scenarios are closely related: properly responding to total disruption. When to prepare (now), how to respond (practice) and how to survive (heed the advice from experts). Because whether the disruption (aka: catastrophe) is bioterrorism or a hurricane, a tornado, a pandemic, a fire, a flood, an earthquake or a zombie apocalypse, the basic preparation steps are the same: get a kit, make a plan, be prepared. Being in the hurricane preparation business, it’s a message we’ve been passing along for decades.

For this Red Cross promotion, Jamie Lee Curtis illustrates the emergency preparation kit. Do you have yours? Photo: American Red Cross

To learn more about how to prepare for and stay safe during an emergency, visit: Emergency.CDC.gov.

The American Red Cross lists the basics of an emergency kit.

A quick search of the entire internet did not reveal additional items for an emergency kit that would specifically deal with zombies. Perhaps the only additional item needed above and beyond the standard emergency kit is ammo. Lots and lots of ammo. Some have said that the zombie apocalypse is tied to the end of the Mayan calendar in 2012 — that gives you some time still.

* Choosing to warn about a zombie apocalypse was no accident. In March, Mr. Kahn’s team was hosting an online chat about radiation leaks when somebody asked a question about zombies. A spike in traffic was noted and the team knew they had found a way to get the public involved and excited about disaster response. The CDC announced the zombie advice Monday and received such heavy traffic that the site crashed on Wednesday. I love it.




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