Start the new year prepared for emergencies: province

The City of Richmond is also working to improve its emergency preparedness strategy through Smart Cities funding bid

To ring in 2019, the province is recommending that B.C. residents put emergency preparedness on their list of new year’s resolutions.

A home emergency kit and household plan could prove to be lifesaving in the event of a major emergency, says Emergency Management BC.

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Recommended items for an emergency kit include:

  • First-aid kit
  • Battery-powered or hand-crank radio
  • Flashlight and extra batteries
  • Whistle to signal for help
  • Cellphone with charger (inverter or solar charger)
  • Cash in small bills
  • A local map with a family meeting place identified
  • A minimum three-day supply of food and water, but aim for a week to two weeks.
  • Garbage bags
  • Dust mask
  • Seasonal clothing and footwear

Richmond works to boost city-wide emergency preparedness

While creating a home emergency plan is helpful for individual families, the City of Richmond is also working to improve its emergency preparedness strategy through its Smart Cities funding bid. In this nation-wide competition, the city is vying for one of two $10 million prizes to use data and technology to improve residents’ lives. Richmond is one of 10 finalists in its category, and now, the city is looking for feedback from the public on its project proposal.

In its Smart Cities vision, the city has proposed to create an “Intelligent Operation Hub” that will integrate data and coordinate emergency responses in the event of a major emergency, or even in the case of smaller day to day events such as traffic congestion.

One area of focus will be to “push” real-time notifications out residents who want them about day-to-day occurrences, such as traffic and rerouting. Then, in the event of an emergency such as an earthquake, the system to send out important information will already be set up.

“During an emergency we can actually push some of the messaging out,” said Denise Tambellini, manager, intergovernmental relations and a co-lead of the City’s Smart Cities Project Team.

“This is not about creating an emergency plan. This is about ensuring we have the appropriate technology to make what we do more effective.”

The deadline to submit feedback on the proposal through My Richmond is Sunday, Jan. 6. Winners of the national challenge are expected to be announced in spring 2019.



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