National Preparedness Month

FEMA designated September as National Preparedness Month (NPM), and the City of Alexandria encourages everyone to learn how to prepare for emergencies by being ready, involved, and informed. Take the opportunity to learn lifesaving skills, discuss an emergency plan with your family, and build a basic emergency supply kit.

Page updated on Sep 3, 2019 at 3:37 PM

2019 National Preparedness Month

National Preparedness Month (NPM), recognized each September, reminds us that we all must prepare ourselves and our families now and throughout the year.

The purpose of NPM, designated annually by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, is to raise public awareness about the importance of being prepared for disasters of any kind. The goal of the initiative is to increase the overall number of individuals, families, and communities that engage in preparedness actions.

This NPM will focus on planning, with an overarching theme: Prepared, Not Scared. NPM is the reminder to everyone to be prepared for the unexpected; to learn lifesaving skills, such as CPR and first aid; and check insurance policies and coverage for hazards you may face, like floods, hurricanes, and tornadoes.

The City of Alexandria encourages everyone to learn how to prepare for emergencies by being ready, involved, and informed. In recognition of National Preparedness Month, the City of Alexandria will host events where the community can learn Hands-Only CPR and how to prepare for emergency situations. Volunteer Alexandria will also host three Until Help Arrives training sessions.

The annual Emergency Preparedness Fair will take place from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesday, September 24 in Market Square (301 King St.). Representatives from the Fire Department, Volunteer Alexandria, Health Department, Department of Transportation & Environmental Services, Community Emergency Response Team, and the Office of Emergency Management will provide information about emergency preparedness, volunteer opportunities, and Hands-Only CPR training.

“Until Help Arrives”

This training, which provides information on how to take action in emergency situations while waiting for professional responders to arrive, will be held at Volunteer Alexandria (123 N. Alfred St.). Space is limited; online registration is required.

  • September 11: 1-5 p.m. and 6-10 p.m.
  • September 25: 1-5 p.m.

Hands-Only CPR

This training, which provides participants with the knowledge and skills necessary to perform CPR without mouth-to-mouth breaths, will be held at the following locations:

  • September 5: 6-8 p.m. at First Thursday in Del Ray (Mt. Vernon and E. Del Ray avenues)
  • September 6: 11 a.m.-2 p.m. at McDonald’s (1000 N. Henry St.)
  • September 9: 11 a.m.- 2 p.m. at Torpedo Factory (105 N. Union St.)
  • September 18: 11 a.m.-2 p.m. at United States Trademark and Patent Office (Dulany Gardens, 300 Dulany St.)
  • September 24: 10 a.m.-2 p.m. at the City’s Emergency Preparedness Fair (Market Square, 301 King St.)

Hands-Only CPR training is FREE and open to the public. No registration is required. For additional information, contact Firefighter Rick Muse Jr. at

Emergency Preparedness Fair

At the City’s Emergency Preparedness Fair on September 24, in addition to hands-only CPR training, representatives from the Alexandria Fire Department; Volunteer Alexandria; Community Emergency Response Team (CERT); Department of Transportation & Environmental Services; and the Alexandria Health Department will provide the public with information about emergency preparedness and volunteer opportunities.

2019 NPM Logo

Be Ready

Planning is an important part of being prepared. Be ready for an emergency or disaster by completing three simple steps:

  1. Build a basic emergency supply kit: Prepare essential food, medicine, and other supplies for you, your family, and pets for at least three days of use.
  2. Prepare a family emergency plan: Decide how you will contact one another, how you will get back together, and what you will do in different situations.
  3. Stay up to date: Learn more about the potential emergencies that could happen where you live and the appropriate ways to respond. Knowing what to do during an emergency is an important part of being prepared and may make all the difference in keeping you and your family safe.

Get Involved

Become a part of something larger by getting involved in preparedness activities at your workplace, campus, or place of worship. Consider volunteering for the Medical Reserve Corps, Citizens Corps Council, or other community groups. Visit the City's Get Involved webpage to find these and other volunteer opportunities. Residents may also sign up for one of Alexandria's free Academy programs to learn more about the City and its public safety agencies, or contact the Office of Emergency Management for more information about Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training.

Be Informed

During an emergency, it is vital to stay informed by monitoring local media and government information for official news and information. Visit the City's Be Alert webpage to learn about the many ways to stay in touch with local government and emergency authorities during an emergency, ranging from the free Alexandria eNews service to social media channels. Another useful resource is Smart911. The City of Alexandria joined the nationwide "Smart911" service, which lets residents, businesses, and visitors provide information to 9-1-1 dispatchers in advance of emergencies. Learn more about this free service by visiting the Smart911 webpage.

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