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Preparing for an Emergency

Preparing for an Emergency (old)

Do you know what to do in an emergency? The good news is you’re more prepared than you think! Use the following steps to ensure you and your family are prepared for everything from a small everyday emergency to a larger disaster.

Register Today for Emergency Notification System

BC Alert

Whether you live, work, or play in the City of Richmond, subscribe to the new Richmond BC Alert emergency notification system by visiting Once registered, you will be alerted to imminent or ongoing emergencies that may affect you in Richmond. 

To ensure everyone in your household or business receives notifications, you can provide multiple contact details and select multiple notification methods. The new system allows subscribers to register up to three email addresses, four phone numbers, two SMS numbers, and one Text Telephone (TTY) number.

There is no cost to subscribe. Standard message and data rates may apply, and receipt and formatting of the notification is dependent on the telephone and email provider. Residents can update their account at any time and are urged to check it annually to ensure all information is up-to-date.

To register for Richmond BC Alert, visit

Know Your Risks

The City of Richmond is susceptible to a number of hazards including:

  • Extreme weather (wind storms, winter storms, heat waves)
  • Earthquakes
  • Flooding
  • Pandemics
  • Power outages
  • Gas Leaks
  • Fires

For more information on these hazards and how they may affect you, visit PreparedBC

Also think about how your personal settings may affect you during any of these hazards and consider them while planning and preparing. These can include:

  • Where you live and work (proximity to the shore, power lines, other hazards)
  • Type of building (single family home, townhouse, apartment, etc.)
  • Who lives with you (seniors, children, pets)

Make A Plan

Make an Emergency Plan

Creating a plan can be quick and easy, but can go a long way in making you feel comfortable in your ability to respond to an emergency.

Your plan should include:

  • Personal information including medical and functional needs
  • An out of Province contact person
  • How to reconnect with family members after an emergency (remember your normal communication methods may not be working)
  • Primary and secondary meeting locations

For a template to create your own plan, visit PreparedBC

Get Your Kit Together

During and after an emergency, you may be on your own for an extended period of time.

You should have enough food, water, and supplies to last your household (don’t forget pets!) for at least 72 hours.

Think about what you would need if you had to leave your home quickly and if you had to stay where you are for a number of days. If you have camping or outdoor equipment, you’re already on your way!

  • Think about where you spend time and how best to keep your emergency supplies available (at home, at work, in the car, etc.)
  • Think about the unique needs of your household (children, seniors, pets, medical needs, personal items, etc.)
  • Remember to check the items in your kits regularly for expiration
  • Make sure everyone in your household knows where and what the emergency supplies are.

For a full list of what to include in a grab-and-go bag and emergency kit, visit PreparedBC

Get Connected

Did you know in an emergency, your neighbours are often your first responders?

The more you know your neighbours and the better connected you are, the more easily you will be able to respond to and recover from emergencies. Here are some examples of activities you can do to connect with your neighbours while planning and preparing together:

  • Host a party for your block or building to get to know each other better
  • Create a neighbourhood map identifying resources, skills, people who may need extra assistance, and where to meet in an emergency
  • Arrange a first aid or rapid damage assessment course to learn together
  • Organize a sharing library for tools and resources for neighbours to share during emergencies as well as everyday
  • Check out this Neighbourhood Preparedness Guide or Apartments and Condos Guide from PreparedBC to create a neighbours helping neighbours emergency plan

Special Considerations

Everyone has their own unique strengths and weaknesses. Consider these in your planning and how they may affect you in your response to an emergency. Think about ways you may be able to help others or where you may need some extra help yourself. Here are some additional resources to assist you in your planning:

Stay Informed

During an emergency the City and first responders will be working hard to save lives, prevent further damage, restore and repair infrastructure that was damaged, and ensure critical services remain available to residents.

In order to stay informed and follow the most up-to-date information and recommendations, it is important to stay connected with official information sources, and avoid rumors or other unverified information.

During and after an emergency you should monitor the City’s website and social media accounts for City related information:

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City of Richmond Non-Emergency Numbers

9-1-1 should be used to report a fire, crime, medical emergency, or downed power line. Do not dial 9-1-1 for information or to ask questions during a large-scale disaster. Help keep 9-1-1 lines free for those with life-threatening emergencies. To learn more about the use of 9-1-1 during disasters, visit

Fire 604-278-5131

Police 604-278-1212

Ambulance 604-872-5151