"Flood" by Flickr User Howard Lake / (CC X 2.0)

Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner has asked federal responders to join state officials in assessing the damage in four counties after flooding last month.

Rauner's office said Thursday that workers from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, Illinois Emergency Management Agency and other groups are expected to start damage assessments on homes and businesses Friday morning.

The assessments will be done in Cook, Kane, Lake and McHenry counties. They will continue through the weekend until they're complete.

IEMA Encourages Earthquake Preparedness

Feb 6, 2017

February is Earthquake Preparedness month.  That's according to the Illinois Emergency Management Agency.  The state is home to two seismic zones in New Madrid and the Wabash Valley.  IEMA spokeswoman Patti Thompson says people should remember to drop, cover, and hold on. 

"They need to drop down to the floor, take cover under a sturdy desk or table or other piece of heavy furniture, and then hold on to that object and prepare to move with it until the shaking ends."  

IEMA Releases Video On Home Radon Testing

Feb 1, 2017
Flickr User Science Activism/CC 2.0

Illinois’ emergency management agency released a video about radon in the home. 

The gas is produced by the radioactive decay of uranium, which is found in trace amounts of certain rocks, such as granite. Radon is the leading cause of lung cancer in non-smokers, and home sellers are required by state law to provide information about local risks. IEMA Spokeswoman Patti Thompson says the video makes it easier to get the message across.

IEMA Encourages Disaster Preparedness

Jan 6, 2017

The Illinois Emergency Management Agency is urging Illinois residents to prepare for disasters.

Spokeswoman Patti Thompson says Illinois weather is often unpredictable and conditions can deteriorate quickly.  She notes many homeowners found their preparations to be a lifesaver.  

"For example, several years back, we had a big ice storm here in the central part of the state -- people really were stuck at home for many days," Thompson says. "The roads were impassable."

"First Aid Kits" by Flickr User Medisave UK / (CC X 2.0)

The Illinois Emergency Management Agency says first aid kits, flashlights, and weather radios can make useful stocking stuffers.

The group says it’s focusing on holiday safety, but the items could be used throughout the year, in case of flooding or other natural disasters. 

Patti Thompson, with IEMA, says safety gifts are important, but often overlooked.

“Things like a weather radio that will alert them when there’s severe weather or a tornado headed their way – even like stocking stuffers, like a flashlight, extra batteries, and a first aid kit," Thompson said.