During Emergency Preparedness Week May 5th to 11th, people are encouraged to know the risks in their area, create a plan for an emergency, and share their plan with the people in their life.

The theme for the national awareness campaign is, Be Prepared. Know Your Risks.

"(Public Safety Canada) They essentially want Canadians to understand what risks there are in their area, and what actions they can take to protect themselves and their families," said Darin Driedger, Emergency Municipal Coordinator for Morden, Winkler, and RM of Stanley.

"In our communities here, typically, we are for the most part sheltered from a lot of the traditional threats many Canadians face, like widespread flooding or big forest fires," said Driedger. 

Although we don’t typically face "traditional threats," Driedger added that doesn't mean we don't have any risk here.

"Obviously with summer coming up, severe summer weather is a big one for us. We've had a lot of large tornadoes in the years past near this area, not too far away. That should still be on people's minds as we head into summer."

When a storm is approaching, resist the urge to head out.

"When a storm is about to hit, you can kind of see the wind shear coming. Again, resist the urge to run."

Driedger added, if you're away from home, don't try to get to your vehicle to drive home.  "I want to emphasize, wherever you are, you need to seek shelter where you are," said Driedger. "Even if you think you're only five minutes from home. Unfortunately, sometimes these things only take a few moments."

Driedger says many of the tragedies in Canada involving severe weather over the years, were related to people getting hit by flying debris. 

This week is also a great opportunity to talk to the people in your life about being prepared and sharing your plan with them.

"I'll emphasize the value of having these conversations again with your close circle, whether it's your friends or family, and it can be coworkers too," Driedger said.  "Having a plan, even discussing it before an emergency or something happens, can make it much easier to manage that situation. I encourage people to have that discussion this week." 

Valuable information can be found on municipal websites, guiding how to create a plan for your family or build an emergency kit.