The Town of North Hempstead has launched a video public service announcement encouraging town residents to make an emergency kit for man-made and natural disasters, including hurricanes.
The $2,500 PSA, featuring a family preparing its emergency supplies kit, was funded by a $7,500 grant from the Adelphi University Center for Health Innovation in Garden City. Meghan McPherson, the center's assistant director, said people should gather basic survival items such as water, nonperishable food and batteries for potential emergencies.
"It's exceptionally important for citizens to have an emergency preparedness kit," McPherson said. "It's important to have [enough to last for] at least 72 hours for someone to get to you."
Town Supervisor Judi Bosworth said the one-minute PSA was designed to inform and entertain viewers.
"You can talk about something as much as you want, but seeing it in action gives you a completely different perspective on what you have to do to prepare in the event of an emergency," Bosworth said.
The video, airing on North Hempstead Television in English until the end of October, will later be subtitled in Chinese and Spanish. It is airing on Cablevision, which owns Newsday. It will be on Verizon FiOS and more Cablevision channels in August. Hurricane season is June 1 to Nov. 30.
The video is part of a campaign including the town updating its community emergency plan. Superstorm Sandy in 2012 caused more than $20 million in damage to the town's residential and commercial properties and town facilities.
"Superstorm Sandy was probably stronger than anybody could have ever imagined," said Ryan Mulholland, the town's deputy director of communications. "Some people were prepared, some were not. We want to make sure this time that everyone is prepared in case anything like that happens again."