Al Roker has seen his fair share of natural disasters in his time as America’s favorite weatherman, and he wants to use his wealth of experience to make sure you’re prepared like a pro.
For the second day in the TODAY Takes Action series, Al teamed up with Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Ready campaign to create a public service announcement encouraging Americans to plan ahead for emergencies.
“Hurricane Sandy was the scariest,” Al told TODAY.com of his most terrifying experience on the job. “It was so big and had the potential to create utter devastation. I used the emergency weather radio when power went out and was able to keep abreast of information when cell phones and Internet went out.”
Most people aren’t as prepared as Al — only 15 percent say they are prepared for a disaster. To help raise awareness, Al and his FEMA team paid a visit to TODAY anchor Natalie Morales, whose home lost power during Sandy, to walk her family through three key steps of disaster preparedness:
- Make a kit with enough supplies that you and your family can survive for a week without power.
- Hold regular home drills, checking your alarms every six months to make sure they’re working.
- Know your area: Are you at risk of earthquakes or floods? This can help you prepare more effectively.
As for him, if Al could only pack one thing in his disaster kit, it would be his radio: “If we lose power and cell service, the radio allows you to keep up with what you need to know.”
Once Al was confident Natalie was prepared, he got to work on his PSA, in which he weathered an epic storm (safely contained within a photo studio). Despite high winds and blowing leaves, Al took it like a champ.
“I’ve been in blizzards, I’ve been in hurricanes. The only bad weather I haven’t covered are locusts-like plagues,” he said. “So I think I can handle it.”
Get ready: Make your own emergency preparedness plan at Ready.gov and find a list of what your family should have prepared in their emergency kit.