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San Diegans Prepare For Emergencies Close to Home

— The potential effects of any natural disaster can vary greatly. But there are steps people can take to be ready for any crisis, like having an emergency kit with food, water, a flashlight and radio.

San Diegans have shown more interest in information like this since Thursday’s 9.0 earthquake and tsunami in Japan.

San Diego County Emergency Services saw a spike in its Web traffic following the disaster. On an average day the site gets about 100 unique visitors, according to Tammy Glenn, a department spokeswoman. Friday about 1,800 people visited the site and 700 more did Saturday, she said.

Many registered their cell phones to receive emergency notification texts through Alert San Diego.

“Prior to the day of the earthquake, I believe we had had about 25 registrations,’ Glenn said. “And in the two days following we had almost 700.”

San Diego’s Red Cross chapter has also seen its emergency preparedness kits grow in popularity over the last few days.

“On average we sell approximately 10 of these per month and in the last five days alone we’ve sold more than 50 and the orders are coming in almost as quickly as we can keep up with them,” said Andrea Waldron, the chapter’s managing director of development and communications.

Both organizations urge citizens to buy or build an emergency bit and create a family emergency plan. The plan should include ways to contact family members and a place to meet in case of an evacuation.

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