events can trigger emergency situations with the potential to escalate
into disaster. Hazards such as power outages or disease outbreaks
can happen anywhere at any time, so you should become familiar
with the spectrum of possible dangers and how you will be notified
about them. It is also important to give special consideration
to hazards likely to affect your local area, such as hurricanes,
tornadoes, flooding, earthquakes or severe winter weather. Living
abroad presents additional preparedness challenges and sometimes
less familiar hazards like volcanic eruption and tsunamis.
While the potential threats can seem overwhelming, keep in mind that most of
what you address in your family emergency plan or put in your emergency kits
will be useful regardless of the hazard. And in many cases, the same protective
alternatives apply—evacuate or shelter-in-place.
Notification and Emergency Actions
You should understand the local mass warning system(s) and, when
notified, be prepared to evacuate, move to a civilian shelter or
designated safe haven or temporarily shelter-in-place.
||Mass Warning Systems: Each
local community is responsible for warning the public of impending
danger due to an emergency. Army installations support this
effort by establishing mass warning and notification systems.
Overseas, these procedures may include warning family members
living off the installation, ideally in cooperation with local
or host-nation authorities.
In the United States, the main agencies that warn of natural
hazards are the National Weather Service (NWS) and the U.S.
Geological Survey (USGS). NWS uses the following terms for
specific natural hazards:
hazardous event is occurring or imminent. Take immediate protective
are favorable for a hazard to develop or move in. Stay alert.
||Evacuation: If advance warning
and other circumstances permit, the preference for nonessential
and nonemergency personnel is evacuation using specified routes
and transportation methods. Installation Emergency Management
organizations have plans and procedures to direct evacuation
or direct movement of personnel and family members to safe
havens or civilian shelters. Be sure to obtain a copy of your state evacuation plan and be familiar with your surroundings. When possible, plan to stay with Family or Friends who are nearby, but unaffected by the hazard.
Safe and effective evacuation requires planning ahead—there
may be no advance warning. You should plan primary and alternative
evacuation routes in advance, with appropriate maps to take
along in your emergency supply kit.
||Moving to Civilian Shelter: A
shelter is a publicly identified, certified, supplied, staffed
and insured mass care facility where endangered people can
find temporary protection for a limited time. Army installations
coordinate shelter needs with appropriate state, local, host-nation
and private agencies. The American Red Cross is the principal
U.S. resource for development, management and operation of
||Moving to Designated Safe Haven: A
local safe haven is a facility on the installation that provides
temporary protection during sudden incidents, such as earthquakes
and tsunamis. A remote safe haven is a facility on a geographically
distant DOD installation or facility that provides short-term to medium-term lodging of displaced personnel during large-scale
incidents, such as hurricanes and extended wildfires.
some instances, evacuating or moving to a shelter or safe haven
is more dangerous than remaining where you are. When there
is a short-notice or no-notice emergency such as a hazardous materials
event, you may be directed to shelter-in-place, that is, take
temporary protection in a structure or vehicle, typically your
workplace or residence. It is important to know for different
emergencies which part of a building is safest and how best
to keep the air safe to breathe.
Reporting Your Accountability Status
At the earliest safe opportunity, check in with your command. It
is important to ensure that you and your Family are accounted
for and receive help if you need it. If you have access to the
Internet, you can report your status through the Army One Source
and Military One Source Web sites (addresses
are listed below). If you cannot get online,
the Army Info Hotline, Army One Source and Military One Source
have established hotlines that you can call to relay messages to
your command and to others who may be concerned about your welfare.
some cases, the Secretary of Defense will direct all DOD-affiliated
personnel in the affected area to report their accountability status
as soon as possible. When this happens, if you have access to the
Internet you are to report your status online through the Army
Disaster Personnel Accountability
and Assessment System (ADPAAS, Web address: https://adpaas.army.mil).
ADPAAS provides a way for Army personnel and their Families in
the disaster-affected area to report their status and how they
were affected by the event. It also provides commanders a means
to assess the impact of the disaster on Soldiers and their Families
and provide assistance where needed. For further information on
ADPAAS, you may email questions to email@example.com. You may
also report your situation through your chain of command or by
using one of the established call centers or hotlines listed below.
|Army Disaster Personnel Accountability
and Assessment System
(ADPAAS) Website: https://adpaas.army.mil
Army One Source
Spanish speaking callers
Hearing impaired callers
for Those Living Abroad
||Learn the local emergency telephone numbers.
These numbers may differ on and off installation. Ensure all
Family members know the appropriate emergency numbers and include
them in your emergency plan.
||If you live off base, plan with host-nation neighbors to
keep informed throughout emergencies. Local media may
cover an emergency before Armed Forces Network (AFN) television/radio.
||If you live off base, threat levels or varied other circumstances
may keep you from getting on base for day-to-day activities
following an emergency. Keep local currency, know alternative
places to shop and learn basic phrases in the local language.
||Selecting a rendezvous point may require more thought and ingenuity
than it would for locations within the United States. Remember, a contact
person in country, but in a different city, is less likely to
be affected by the same event.
||The U.S. Department of State provides a range of resources
for Americans traveling abroad. Visit the Emergencies
and Crises page on