That’s the message from the Scottish Government at the start of the inaugural National Resilience Week, which runs until November 11.
Recent winters have proven that Scottish weather is unpredictable. It can cause a range of problems but everyone can get ready.
When it comes to severe weather it is important to stay informed (register for alerts with the Met Office and Floodline or listen to local news reports), be prepared and think if there are others you can help.
Here’s some practical tips to get started:
* Identify family or neighbours in your community who may need a help if severe weather strikes – have their phone numbers to hand and offer to help them prepare
* Make a household plan and collect together items that will be important to you and your family in an emergency
* Pack a few essential items in your car such as an ice scraper and de-icer, a torch and spare batteries, a shovel for snow, warm clothes, boots and a blanket; and some food and a warm drink in a flask
* Whether you’re self-employed, manage a small team or run a large business, ensure your work place has severe weather contingencies in place.
* If you live in an area at risk of flooding, register with Floodline on 0345 988 1188
There’s more information and advice online at www.readyscotland.org.
Deputy First Minister John Swinney said: “Everyone is affected by unexpected events at one time or another. Resilience Week gives us all a chance to think about how we can be better prepared for things like severe weather and flooding, cyber-crime, disruption to business and ill-health.
“Scotland has excellent emergency services, but what we do as individuals, and together, can also make a big difference. While it is not possible to avoid every risk, there are sensible steps we can all take to make life easier for ourselves and others. Plan ahead, check weather forecasts before travelling, sign up for flood alerts and check in on your neighbours, particularly the elderly and vulnerable at this time of year and stay safe online.”