Why you need an out-of-state contact

Hilary Anderson, American Red Cross Preparedness and Resiliency Manager, explains why it is important to have an out-of-state contact in order in order to contact in an emergency
Importance of Having An Out-of-State Contact In Case of Emergency
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Why you need an out-of-state contact

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The three steps for getting prepared for an emergency--get a kit, make a plan, be informed... Making your plan--one great component of that is having an out-of-state contact. That's a person that lives outside the affected area, so it doesn't necessarily have to be outside of the state, but it's a person who you call immediately following an emergency to let know that you are okay. Everyone who's a part of your plan should know that out-of-state contact's phone number. A good rule of thumb is that long-distance lines are established before local lines, making it easier to call across the state than it is to call across the street, especially if you're local and two local lines are calling each other--you may not even be able to get ahold of that person, but you may be able to get ahold of somebody outside the affected area. That's the reason we want an out-of-state contact--a family member, a friend--somebody that you can share their contact information with. Make sure you get permission; then, every person that's a part of your plan should have that phone number. You call, let them know where you are--that you're okay, and then they serve as a hub of information for the other people in your plan. You're all local, and you're all affected; it might not be possible for you to talk, but that one person could be your source of information for finding out if your family's okay.

Hilary Anderson, American Red Cross Preparedness and Resiliency Manager, explains why it is important to have an out-of-state contact in order in order to contact in an emergency

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Hilary Anderson, MA

American Red Cross

Hilary Anderson has been with the American Red Cross for the past three and a half years as a volunteer and staff member in positions with communications, disaster relief, development and volunteer services. As the Preparedness and Resiliency Manager, her primary responsibility is the delivery of educational programming across the Los Angeles region to get individuals, schools, businesses and organizations prepared for a disaster. As a dog owner, she also hopes to get your pets ready too! Hilary has a master’s degree in International Policy Studies with an emphasis in humanitarian assistance as well as a bachelor’s degree in International Relations, Journalism and German. She has worked for non-profits abroad in Israel, Bolivia and Germany focusing on grant writing, youth and education and also feeding and sheltering. 

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