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The Office of Emergency Management (OEM) is a unique agency that serves Kendall County/City of Boerne. Under Federal and State regulations, the Director of the Emergency Management Program is our chief elected officials: our County Judge, Mayor. The County Emergency Management Coordinator who is appointed by the Judge oversees the daily operations of the emergency management program. OEM works closely with all county, city, state and federal agencies. The County Emergency Manager is Jeffery Fincke. The OEM also partners with many other agencies such as the Salvation Army, the American Red Cross, all County Fire Departments, local Law Enforcement, the Amateur Radio Club, Alamo Area Council of Governments (AACOG) Regional Emergency Planning Action Committee (REPAC) surrounding County Emergency Managers, the National Weather Service, the local hospital, the schools and school districts to make our county as emergency and disaster resistant as possible.
Emergencies and disasters can strike at any time, with no warning, these emergencies and disasters come in many different forms and shapes. The Kendall County Office of Emergency Management supports and protects the citizen of Kendall County by having and continuing to improve our capabilities to prevent, to prepare for, respond to, recover from and mitigate against the hazards we face.
Emergency Management has five phases to help guide us in our mission to protect the citizens, visitors and responder in Kendall County.
THE FIVE PHASES OF EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT
Prevention focuses on preventing human hazards, primarily from potential natural disasters or terrorist (both physical and biological) attacks. Preventive measures are designed to provide more permanent protection from disasters; however, not all disasters can be prevented. The risk of loss of life and injury can be limited with good evacuation plans, environmental planning and design standards.
Preparedness is a continuous cycle of planning, organizing, training, equipping, exercising, evaluating, and taking corrective action. Training and exercising plans is the cornerstone of preparedness which focuses on readiness to respond to all-hazards incidents and emergencies.
Response is comprised of the coordination and management of resources (including personnel, equipment, and supplies) utilizing the Incident Command System in an all-hazards approach; and measures taken for life/property/environmental safety. The response phase is a reaction to the occurrence of a catastrophic disaster or emergency.
Recovery consists of those activities that continue beyond the emergency period to restore critical community functions and begin to manage stabilization efforts. The recovery phase begins immediately after the threat to human life has subsided. The goal of the recovery phase is to bring the affected area back to some degree of normalcy.
Mitigation is the effort to reduce loss of life and property by lessening the impact of disasters and emergencies. Mitigation involves structural and non-structural measures taken to limit the impact of disasters and emergencies. Structural mitigation actions change the characteristics of buildings or the environment; examples include flood control projects, raising building elevations, and clearing areas around structures. Non-structural mitigation most often entails adopting or changing building codes.
The OEM takes an “all hazards” approach to emergency and disaster management which is reflected in our disaster plan and annexes. This plan is made up of several components that encompass the Basic Plan and 22 annexes. It is the responsibility of the Emergency Management to gather the local experts in these areas to write, review, and when necessary update the plan and annexes.
Training is the root for an effective emergency or disaster response. Our law enforcement officers, EMS personnel, fire fighters are excellent in handling emergencies and crisis situations. However, when disaster strikes on a large scale, extraordinary measures are needed to manage our response, resources, and handle situations that are not with-in the normal day-today functions. Because of the extraordinary circumstances training becomes critical. The Office of Emergency Management works with the county, city agencies to identify and coordinate appropriate training opportunities.
Public Education and Awareness
Another responsibility for OEM is to inform you, the citizens and visitors, and responders of Kendall County and the City of Boerne information you need to know to prepare, shelter and protect yourself, family and friends from an emergency or disaster. We continually strive to bring you the information in a timely manner. This website will provide you with some of this information. Click here for that information.
If you or your organization or business desire we can have representatives from the OEM come to speak on a variety of Emergency Management topics. We can be contacted by calling 830-249-3721 or e-mail
Click here to e-mail.
Another option is to complete a request from. Click here for form.
To sign up for different types of notifications in Kendall County and surrounding area click on the link below.
Ready.gov: Recovering from Disaster
Disasters, both natural and man-made, can strike at any time. It's important to be prepared and have plans for anything that may arise. Here you can find tips for preparing and information on how to make plans.
PLANNING FOR AN EMERGENCY
Always Remain Calm
Be prepared to adopt this information to your personal circumstances and make every effort to follow instructions received from authorities on the scene. Above all, stay calm, be patient, and think before you act. With these simple preparations, you can be ready for the unexpected.
Develop a Family Communications Plan
Your family may not be together when disaster strikes, so plan how you will contact one another and review what you will do in different situations. It may be easier to make a long distance phone call than to call across town. Have a family member or friend who lives in another location be a designated contact if this is the case. Be sure each person knows the phone number and has coins or a prepaid phone card to call the emergency contact. Getting through may be tough so be patient. Cell phones are another option.
FEMA's Ready.gov site can help you prepare a family plan with details and downloadable materials on their Make a Plan page.
Deciding to Stay or Go
Use common sense and available information to determine if there is immediate danger. In any emergency, local authorities may or may not immediately be able to provide information on what is happening and what you should do. You should watch TV, listen to the radio, and check the websites of news organizations and government officials often for information or official instructions as it becomes available.
Staying Put and "Sheltering in Place"
If you see large amounts of debris in the air, or if local authorities say the air is badly contaminated, you may want to "shelter in place" (staying put and creating a barrier between yourself and potentially contaminated air outside). Plan in advance where you will take shelter. Choose an interior room or a room with as few windows and doors as possible.
Quickly bring your family and pets inside, lock doors, and close windows, air vents, and fireplace dampers. Turn off air conditioning, forced air heating systems, exhaust fans, and clothes dryers. Seal off all windows and air vents in the room with heavyweight garbage bags or plastic sheeting and duct tape.
If you chose to evacuate, plan in advance how you will assemble your family and anticipate where you will go. Choose several destinations in different directions so you have options in an emergency. If you have a car, keep at least a half tank of gas in it at all times, or store an extra gas can in a safe location. Become familiar with alternate routes as well as other means of transportation out of your area. Take pets with you if you are going to evacuate. However, if you are going to a public shelter, keep in mind that they may not be allowed inside. Research ahead of time for pet friendly locations or what shelters will allow pets and what kinds they will allow. Also contact your local animal shelters. Many of them will have the ability to provide you with information on what can be done with your pet in cases of emergency.
For more information on planning for an evacuation, visit "Evacuating Yourself and Your Family" page.
BASIC EMERGENCY SUPPLIES KIT
A basic emergency supply kit could include the following recommended items:
Once you have gathered the supplies for a basic emergency kit, you may want to consider adding the following items:
In any emergency a family member or you yourself may suffer an injury. If you have these basic first aid supplies you are better prepared to help your loved ones when they are hurt.
Knowing how to treat minor injuries can make a difference in an emergency. You may consider taking a first aid class, but simply having the following things can help you stop bleeding, prevent infection and assist in decontamination.
PET EMERGENCY KIT
Put together a kit of pet emergency supplies. Just as you do with your family's emergency supply kit, think first about the basics for survival, particularly food and water.
Consider two kits. In one, put everything your pets will need to stay where you are and make it on your own. The other should be a lightweight, smaller version you can take with you if you and your pets have to get away.
MAKE A PLAN FOR WHAT YOU WILL DO IN AN EMERGENCY
Plan in advance what you will do in an emergency. Be prepared to assess the situation. Use common sense and whatever you have on hand to take care of yourself and ensure your pet's safety during an emergency.
Evacuate. Plan how you will assemble your pets and anticipate where you will go. If you must evacuate, take your pets with you, if practical. If you go to a public shelter, keep in mind your pets may not be allowed inside.
Secure appropriate lodging in advance depending on the number and type of animals in your care. Consider family or friends outside your immediate area who would be willing to take in you and your pets in an emergency.
Other options may include: a hotel or motel that takes pets or some sort of boarding facility, such as a kennel or veterinary hospital that is near an evacuation facility or your family's meeting place. Find out before an emergency happens if any of these facilities in your area might be viable options for you and your pets.
Develop a buddy system. Plan with neighbors, friends or relatives to make sure that someone is available to care for or evacuate your pets if you are unable to do so. Talk with your pet care buddy about your evacuation plans and show them where you keep your pet's emergency supply kit. Also designate specific locations, one in your immediate neighborhood and other farther away, where you will meet in an emergency.
Talk to your pet's veterinarian about emergency planning. Discuss the types of things you should include in your pet's emergency first aid kit. Get the names of vets or veterinary hospitals in other cities where you might need to seek temporary shelter. Also talk with your veterinarian about microchipping. If you and your pet are separated, this permanent implant for your pet and corresponding enrollment in a recovery database can help a veterinarian or shelter identify your animal. If your pet is microchipped, keeping your emergency contact information up to date and listed with a reliable recovery database is essential to you and your pet being reunited.
Gather contact information for emergency animal treatment. Make a list of contact information and addresses of area animal control agencies including the Humane Society or ASPCA and emergency veterinary hospitals. Keep one copy of these phone numbers with you, and one in your pet's emergency supply kit. Obtain "Pets Inside" stickers and place them on your doors or windows, including information on the number and types of pets in your home to alert firefighters and rescue workers. Consider putting a phone number on the sticker where you could be reached in an emergency. And, if time permits, remember to write the words "Evacuated with Pets" across the stickers should you evacuate your home with your pets.
BE PREPARED FOR WHAT MIGHT HAPPEN
Some of the things you can do to prepare for the unexpected, such as assembling an emergency supply kit for yourself, your family and your pets, is the same regardless of the type of emergency. However, it's important to say informed about what might happen and know what types of emergencies are likely to affect your region.
Knowing the actions to take for each type of threat will impact the specific decisions and preparations you make. By learning about these specific threats, you are preparing yourself to react in an emergency. Visit our "Prepare for an Event" page to learn how to prepare for specific threats.
Floods are one of the most common hazards in the United States; however not all floods are alike. Some floods develop slowly, while others, such a flash-flood, can develop in just a few minutes and without visible signs of rain. Additionally, floods can be local, impacting a neighborhood or community, or very large, affecting entire river basins and multiple states.
Flash floods can occur within a few minutes or hours of excessive rainfall, a dam or levee failure, or a sudden release of water held by an ice jam. Flash floods often have a dangerous wall of roaring water carrying rocks, mud and other debris. Overland flooding, the most common type of flooding event, typically occurs when waterways such as rivers or streams overflow their banks as a result of rainwater or a possible levee breach and cause flooding in surrounding areas. It can also occur when rainfall or snowmelt exceeds the capacity of underground pipes, or the capacity of streets and drains designed to carry flood water away from urban areas.
Be aware of flood hazards no matter where you live or work, but especially if you are in low-lying areas, near water, behind a levee or downstream from a dam. Even very small streams, gullies, creeks, culverts, dry streambeds or low-lying ground that appear harmless in dry weather can flood.
For tips on how to survive a flood, watch the “Ready for Anything: Preparing for the Next Flood” video
BEFORE A FLOOD
What would you do if your property were flooded? Are you prepared?
Even if you feel you live in a community with a low risk of flooding, remember that anywhere it rains, it can flood. Just because you haven't experienced a flood in the past, doesn't mean you won't in the future. Flood risk isn't just based on history; it's also based on a number of factors including rainfall, topography, flood-control measures, river-flow and tidal-surge data, and changes due to new construction and development.
Flood-hazard maps have been created to show the flood risk for your community, which helps determine the type of flood insurance coverage you will need since standard homeowners insurance doesn't cover flooding. The lower the degree of risk, the lower the flood insurance premium.
In addition to having flood insurance, knowing following flood hazard terms will help you recognize and prepare for a flood.
To prepare for a flood, you should:
DURING A FLOOD
If a flood is likely in your area, you should:
If you must prepare to evacuate, you should do the following:
If you have to leave your home, remember these evacuation tips:
AFTER THE FLOOD
Your home has been flooded. Although floodwaters may be down in some areas, many dangers still exist. Here are some things to remember in the days ahead:
If you must walk or drive in areas that have been flooded:
A flood can cause physical hazards and emotional stress. You need to look after yourself and your family as you focus on cleanup and repair.
CLEANING UP AND REPAIRING YOUR HOME
What you should know:
What you can do: Find out if your home or business is at risk to flood and educate yourself on the impact a flood could have on you and your family. FEMA's Flood Insurance Study compiled statistical data on river flows, storm tides, hydrologic/hydraulic analyses, and rainfall and topographic surveys to create flood hazard maps that outline your community's different flood risk areas.
Talk to your insurance provider about your policy and determine if you need additional coverage.
Contact the NFIP. They can help provide a means for property owners to financially protect themselves if additional coverage is required. The NFIP offers flood insurance to homeowners, renters, and business owners if their community participates in the NFIP. To find out more about the NFIP visit the Flood Smart website.
Heat kills by pushing the human body beyond its limits. In extreme heat and high humidity, evaporation is slowed and the body must work extra hard to maintain a normal temperature.
Most heat disorders occur because the victim has been overexposed to heat or has over-exercised for his or her age and physical condition. Older adults, young children and those who are sick or overweight are more likely to succumb to extreme heat.
Conditions that can induce heat-related illnesses include stagnant atmospheric conditions and poor air quality. Consequently, people living in urban areas may be at greater risk from the effects of a prolonged heat wave than those living in rural areas. Also, asphalt and concrete store heat longer and gradually release heat at night, which can produce higher nighttime temperatures known as the "urban heat island effect."
A heat wave is an extended period of extreme heat, and is often accompanied by high humidity. These conditions can be dangerous and even life-threatening for humans who don't take the proper precautions.
BEFORE EXTREME HEAT
To prepare for extreme heat, you should:
DURING EXTREME HEAT
What you should do if the weather is extremely hot:
WINTER STORMS AND EXTREME COLD
While the danger from winter weather varies across the country, nearly all Americans, regardless of where they live, are likely to face some type of severe winter weather at some point in their lives. Winter storms can range from a moderate snow over a few hours to a blizzard with blinding, wind-driven snow that lasts for several days. Many winter storms are accompanied by dangerously low temperatures and sometimes by strong winds, icing, sleet and freezing rain.
One of the primary concerns is the winter weather's ability to knock out heat, power and communications services to your home or office, sometimes for days at a time. Heavy snowfall and extreme cold can immobilize an entire region.
The National Weather Service refers to winter storms as the “Deceptive Killers” because most deaths are indirectly related to the storm. Instead, people die in traffic accidents on icy roads and of hypothermia from prolonged exposure to cold. It is important to be prepared for winter weather before it strikes.
BEFORE WINTER STORMS AND EXTREME COLD
To prepare for a winter storm you should do the following:
DURING WINTER STORMS AND EXTREME COLD
AFTER WINTER STORMS AND EXTREME COLD
More and more people are making their homes in woodland settings - in or near forests, rural areas, or remote mountain sites. There, homeowners enjoy the beauty of the environment but face the very real danger of wildfire.
Every year across our Nation, some homes survive - while many others do not - after a major wildfire. Those that survive almost always do so because their owners had prepared for the eventuality of fire, which is an inescapable force of nature in fire-prone wildland areas. Said in another way - if it's predictable, it's preventable!
Wildfires often begin unnoticed. These fires are usually triggered by lightning or accidents. They spread quickly, igniting brush, trees, and homes. Reduce your risk by preparing now - before wildfire strikes. Meet with your family to decide what to do and where to go if wildfires threaten your area. Follow the steps listed below to protect your family, home, and property
For tips on how to survive a wildfire, watch the “A Community Rebuilds: Recovering from Wildfires” video
BEFORE A WILDFIRE
The following are things you can do to protect yourself, your family and your property in the event of a fire.
DURING A WILDFIRE
If advised to evacuate, do so immediately. Take your disaster supply kit, lock your home and choose a route away from the fire hazard. Watch for changes in the speed and direction of the fire and smoke. Tell someone when you left and where you are going.
If you see a wildfire and haven't received evacuation orders yet, call 9-1-1. Don't assume that someone else has already called. Describe the location of the fire, speak slowly and clearly, and answer any questions asked by the dispatcher.
If you are not ordered to evacuate, and have time to prepare your home, FEMA recommends you take the following actions:
AFTER A WILDFIRE
The following are guidelines for different circumstances in the period following a fire:
Each year more than 2,500 people die and 12,600 are injured in home fires in the United States, with direct property loss due to home fires estimated at $7.3 billion annually. Home fires can be prevented!
To protect yourself, it is important to understand the basic characteristics of fire. Fire spreads quickly; there is no time to gather valuables or make a phone call. In just two minutes, a fire can become life-threatening. In five minutes, a residence can be engulfed in flames.
Heat and smoke from fire can be more dangerous than the flames. Inhaling the super-hot air can sear your lungs. Fire produces poisonous gases that make you disoriented and drowsy. Instead of being awakened by a fire, you may fall into a deeper sleep. Asphyxiation is the leading cause of fire deaths, exceeding burns by a three-to-one ratio.
Every day Americans experience the horror of fire but most people don't understand fire.
Fire is FAST!
There is little time! In less than 30 seconds a small flame can get completely out of control and turn into a major fire. It only takes minutes for thick black smoke to fill a house or for it to be engulfed in flames. Most deadly fires occur in the home when people are asleep. If you wake up to a fire, you won't have time to grab valuables because fire spreads too quickly and the smoke is too thick. There is only time to escape.
Fire is HOT!
Heat is more threatening than flames. A fire's heat alone can kill. Room temperatures in a fire can be 100 degrees at floor level and rise to 600 degrees at eye level. Inhaling this super-hot air will scorch your lungs. This heat can melt clothes to your skin. In five minutes, a room can get so hot that everything in it ignites at once: this is called flashover.
Fire is DARK!
Fire isn't bright, it's pitch black. Fire starts bright, but quickly produces black smoke and complete darkness. If you wake up to a fire you may be blinded, disoriented and unable to find your way around the home you've lived in for years.
Fire is DEADLY!
Smoke and toxic gases kill more people than flames do. Fire uses up the oxygen you need and produces smoke and poisonous gases that kill. Breathing even small amounts of smoke and toxic gases can make you drowsy, disoriented and short of breath. The odorless, colorless fumes can lull you into a deep sleep before the flames reach your door. You may not wake up in time to escape.
Only when we know the true nature of fire can we prepare our families and ourselves.
BEFORE A FIRE
Create and practice a fire escape plan.
In the event of a fire, remember that every second counts, so you and your family must always be prepared. Escape plans help you get out of your home quickly.
Twice each year, practice your home fire escape plan. Some tips to consider when preparing this plan include:
For tips on how to prevent home fires, watch the “Fire is Everyone's Fight” video from FEMA.
DURING A FIRE
AFTER A FIRE
Recovering from a fire can be a physically and mentally draining process. When fire strikes, lives are suddenly turned around. Often, the hardest part is knowing where to begin and who to contact.
The following checklist serves as a quick reference and guide for you to follow after a fire strikes.
For more information on what you should do after a home fire, including valuing your property, replacing documents, and salvage hints, visit the U.S. Fire Administration's website.
EVACUATING YOURSELF AND YOUR FAMILY
Prepare now in the event of an evacuation.
Evacuations are more common than many people realize. Fires and floods cause evacuations most frequently across the U.S. and almost every year, people along coastlines evacuate as hurricanes approach. In addition, hundreds of times a year, transportation and industrial accidents release harmful substances, forcing many people to leave their homes.
In some circumstances, local officials decide that the hazards are serious and require mandatory evacuations. In others, evacuations are advised or households decide to evacuate to avoid situations they believe are potentially dangerous. When community evacuations become necessary local officials provide information to the public through the media. In some circumstances, other warning methods, such as sirens, text alerts, emails or telephone calls are used.
The amount of time you have to leave will depend on the hazard. If the event is a weather condition, such as a hurricane, you might have a day or two to get ready. However, many disasters allow no time for people to gather even the most basic necessities, which is why planning ahead is essential.
Plan how you will assemble your family and supplies and anticipate where you will go for different situations. Choose several destinations in different directions so you have options in an emergency and know the evacuation routes to get to those destinations.
There may be conditions under which you will decide to get away or there may be situations when you are ordered to leave. Follow these guidelines for evacuation:
If time allows:
THUNDERSTORMS AND LIGHTNING
All thunderstorms are dangerous. Every thunderstorm produces lightning. While lightning fatalities have decreased over the past 30 years, lightning continues to be one of the top three storm-related killers in the United States. In 2010 there were 29 fatalities and 182 injuries from lightning. Although most lightning victims survive, people struck by lightning often report a variety of long-term, debilitating symptoms.
Other associated dangers of thunderstorms include tornadoes, strong winds, hail and flash flooding. Flash flooding is responsible for more fatalities – more than 140 annually – than any other thunderstorm-associated hazard. Dry thunderstorms that do not produce rain that reaches the ground are most prevalent in the western United States. Falling raindrops evaporate, but lightning can still reach the ground and can start wildfires.
BEFORE THUNDERSTORMS AND LIGHTNING
To prepare for a thunderstorm, you should do the following:
DURING THUNDERSTORMS AND LIGHTNING
If thunderstorm and lightning are occurring in your area, you should:
AFTER A THUNDERSTORM OR LIGHTNING STRIKE
If lightning strikes you or someone you know, call 9-1-1 for medical assistance as soon as possible. The following are things you should check when you attempt to give aid to a victim of lightning:
Tornadoes are nature's most violent storms. Spawned from powerful thunderstorms, tornadoes can cause fatalities and devastate a neighborhood in seconds. A tornado appears as a rotating, funnel-shaped cloud that extends from a thunderstorm to the ground with whirling winds that can reach 300 miles per hour. Damage paths can be in excess of one mile wide and 50 miles long. Every state is at some risk from this hazard. Some tornadoes are clearly visible, while rain or nearby low-hanging clouds obscure others. Occasionally, tornadoes develop so rapidly that little, if any, advance warning is possible. Before a tornado hits, the wind may die down and the air may become very still. A cloud of debris can mark the location of a tornado even if a funnel is not visible. Tornadoes generally occur near the trailing edge of a thunderstorm. It is not uncommon to see clear, sunlit skies behind a tornado.
BEFORE A TORNADO
DURING A TORNADO
If you are under a tornado warning, seek shelter immediately! Most injuries associated with high winds are from flying debris, so remember to protect your head.
If you are in a structure (e.g. residence, small building, school, nursing home, hospital, factory, shopping center, high-rise building):
If you are in a trailer or mobile home:
If you are outside with no shelter:
AFTER A TORNADO
Injury may result from the direct impact of a tornado or it may occur afterward when people walk among debris and enter damaged buildings. A study of injuries after a tornado in Marion, Illinois, showed that 50 percent of the tornado-related injuries were suffered during rescue attempts, cleanup and other post-tornado activities. Nearly a third of the injuries resulted from stepping on nails. Because tornadoes often damage power lines, gas lines or electrical systems, there is a risk of fire, electrocution or an explosion. Protecting yourself and your family requires promptly treating any injuries suffered during the storm and using extreme care to avoid further hazards.
Check for injuries. Do not attempt to move seriously injured people unless they are in immediate danger of further injury. Get medical assistance immediately. If someone has stopped breathing, begin CPR if you are trained to do so. Stop a bleeding injury by applying direct pressure to the wound. Have any puncture wound evaluated by a physician. If you are trapped, try to attract attention to your location.
General Safety Precautions
Inspecting the Damage
SAFETY DURING CLEAN UP
WEST NILE VIRUS
West Nile virus (WNV) is the leading cause of mosquito-borne disease in the continental United States. It is most commonly spread to people by the bite of an infected mosquito. Cases of WNV occur during mosquito season, which starts in the summer and continues through fall. There are no vaccines to prevent or medications to treat WNV in people. Fortunately, most people infected with WNV do not feel sick. About 1 in 5 people who are infected develop a fever and other symptoms. About 1 out of 150 infected people develop a serious, sometimes fatal, illness. You can reduce your risk of WNV by using insect repellent and wearing long-sleeved shirts and long pants to prevent mosquito bites.
Symptoms, Diagnosis, & Treatment
Statistics & Maps
West Nile Virus & Dead Birds
For Healthcare Providers
Everyone can help…
Activity and Surveillance
Check where WNV is active…
Could it be WNV?
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Symptoms, Testing and Treatment
For Pregnant Women
For Health Care Providers
For Travelers, Parents, and Other Groups
Areas with Zika
Mosquitoes and Hurricanes
Men and Zika
What’s your Zika IQ?
Areas with Risk of Zika
What everyone needs to know about Zika virus.
Symptoms, Testing, & Treatment
The most common symptoms of Zika are fever, rash, headache, joint pain, red eyes, and muscle pain.
Prevention & Transmission
Zika is spread mostly by the bite of an infected mosquito. Prevent Zika by avoiding mosquito bites.
Health Effects & Risks
Zika can cause birth defects and is linked to Guillain-Barré syndrome.
Essential information about Zika for pregnant women and couples interested in conceiving.
Zika in the US
Stay informed about Zika in the United States.
Up-to-date guidance, resources, and training for providers evaluating and caring for patients with Zika.
CDC has a surveillance system for collecting data on Zika virus cases.
Prevent the spread of Zika by controlling mosquitoes in and around your home and community.
Information for Specific Groups
What's your Zika IQ?
Learn the top 5 things you need to know about Zika.
In 2018 and 2019, no local mosquito-borne Zika virus transmission has been reported in the continental United States.
If you are traveling outside of the continental United States, see Zika Travel Information to learn about your destination.
Prevent mosquito bites when traveling:
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Content provided and maintained by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Please see our system usage guidelines and disclaimer.
CARING FOR ANIMALS
If you are like millions of animal owners nationwide, your pet is an important member of your household. Unfortunately, animals are also affected by disaster.
The likelihood that you and your animals will survive an emergency such as a fire or flood, tornado or terrorist attack depends largely on emergency planning done today. Some of the things you can do to prepare for the unexpected, such as assembling an animal emergency supply kit and developing a pet care buddy system, are the same for any emergency. Whether you decide to stay put in an emergency or evacuate to a safer location, you will need to make plans in advance for your pets. Keep in mind that what's best for you is typically what's best for your animals.
If you evacuate your home, do not leave your pets behind! Pets most likely cannot survive on their own and if by some remote chance they do, you may not be able to find them when you return.
If you are going to a public shelter, it is important to understand that animals may not be allowed inside. Plan in advance for shelter alternatives that will work for both you and your pets; consider loved ones or friends outside of your immediate area who would be willing to host you and your pets in an emergency.
Make a backup emergency plan in case you can't care for your animals yourself. Develop a buddy system with neighbors, friends and relatives to make sure that someone is available to care for or evacuate your pets if you are unable to do so. Be prepared to improvise and use what you have on hand to make it on your own for at least three days, maybe longer.
For additional information, please contact the Humane Society of the United States.
Plan for pet needs during a disaster by:
For tips on how to prepare your pets for an emergency, watch the “Including Your Pets in Your Emergency Plans” video from FEMA.
HAZARDOUS MATERIALS INCIDENTS
Chemicals are found everywhere. They purify drinking water, increase crop production and simplify household chores. But chemicals also can be hazardous to humans or the environment if used or released improperly. Hazards can occur during production, storage, transportation, use or disposal. You and your community are at risk if a chemical is used unsafely or released in harmful amounts into the environment where you live, work or play.
Hazardous materials in various forms can cause death, serious injury, long-lasting health effects and damage to buildings, homes and other property. Many products containing hazardous chemicals are used and stored in homes routinely. These products are also shipped daily on the nation's highways, railroads, waterways and pipelines.
Chemical manufacturers are one source of hazardous materials, but there are many others, including service stations, hospitals and hazardous materials waste sites.
Varying quantities of hazardous materials are manufactured, used or stored at an estimated 4.5 million facilities in the United States - from major industrial plants to local dry cleaning establishments or gardening supply stores.
Hazardous materials come in the form of explosives, flammable and combustible substances, poisons and radioactive materials. These substances are most often released as a result of transportation accidents or because of chemical accidents in plants.
Before a Hazardous Materials Incident
The following are things you can do to protect yourself, your family and your property from the effects of a hazardous materials incident:
During a Hazardous Materials Incident
Listen to local radio or television stations for detailed information and instructions. Follow the instructions carefully. You should stay away from the area to minimize the risk of contamination. Remember that some toxic chemicals are odorless.
If you are asked to evacuate:
If you are caught outside:
If you are in a motor vehicle:
If you are requested to stay indoors:
After a Hazardous Materials Incident
The following are guidelines for the period following a hazardous materials incident:
HOUSEHOLD CHEMICAL EMERGENCIES
Nearly every household uses products containing hazardous materials or chemicals. Although the risk of a chemical accident is slight, knowing how to handle these products and how to react during an emergency can reduce the risk of injury.
Before a Household Chemical Emergency
The following are guidelines for buying and storing hazardous household chemicals safely:
During a Household Chemical Emergency
Get out of the residence immediately if there is a danger of fire or explosion. Do not waste time collecting items or calling the fire department when you are in danger. Call the fire department from outside (a cellular phone or a neighbor's phone) once you are safely away from danger.
If someone is experiencing toxic poisoning symptoms or has been exposed to a household chemical, call the national poison control center at 800.222.1222 and find any containers of the substance that are readily available in order to provide requested information.
Follow the emergency operator or dispatcher's first aid instructions carefully. The first aid advice found on containers may be out of date or inappropriate. Do not give anything by mouth unless advised to do so by a medical professional.
After a Household Chemical Emergency
Discard clothing that may have been contaminated. Some chemicals may not wash out completely.
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