WALTON COUNTY, Fla. (WMBB) — You may feel like you are prepared for hurricanes, but what about other types of disasters or hazards?

September is National Preparedness Month and Walton County Emergency Management is teaching residents how to be prepared for anything that might come their way.

National Preparedness Month started in 2004 through Federal Emergency Management following the tragic events of 9/11.

Walton County Emergency Management is using the month to educate residents on being prepared for any disaster or hazard that could strike the area.

“What we ask folks to do is, make sure that they are prepared for disasters, know what type of disasters could strike within their community, build their kits, make their plans,” Emergency Management Director
Jeff Goldberg said.

Goldberg also wants to ensure residents know where to get trusted information in the event of an emergency or disaster.

The top five preparedness tips are to make a plan, know where to evacuate, stay connected, check your insurance policy, and document your valuables.

“We are taking the all-hazards approach,” Goldberg said. “Hazardous materials incidents, we have a rail line that comes through Walton County, there are a lot of dangerous chemicals that are transported by rail, that are transported by truck so we want to some awareness, some preparedness on those things as well.”

Most people who live in the Panhandle are aware of hurricane preparedness, but what if you were faced with a chemical spill from a train derailment? What about mass casualty incidents, or wildfires?

Goldberg said they’re also teaching people how to prepare for some of those scenarios as well.

“The biggest thing is we want folks to be aware of things that could happen and there are a lot of different disasters that could effect us,” Goldberg said.

For more preparedness information and their local mitigation strategy visit their website WaltonCountyEm.org.

Goldberg also encourages residents to sign up for alerts on AlertWalton.org.