This weekend's 10-year anniversary of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks serves as a reminder of how quickly disaster can strike and how everyone must be vigilant. If a disaster happened right now would you be ready?

September is National Preparedness Month and the Louisiana Department of Health urges Louisianians to take the opportunity to update their disaster plan and prepare their families, homes and businesses. If another disaster strikes, it is important to have supplies and necessities to last the first 72 hours before help arrives.

"Recent events including Tropical Storm Lee, the deadly tornadoes in the central U.S. and southeast, flooding along the Mississippi, Hurricane Irene and other emergencies remind us that we should be prepared to address all hazards," said Louisiana State Health Officer Dr. Jimmy Guidry. "Everyone needs to be prepared. This means having an emergency plan, storing an emergency kit and staying informed of alerts or messages from local emergency officials."

This year's campaign theme, "A Time to Remember. A Time to Prepare," seeks to encourage all Americans to take the necessary steps to ensure that their homes, workplaces and communities are prepared for disasters and emergencies of all kinds.

This month, LDH is participating in events statewide aimed at helping Louisianians stay prepared. Being prepared can mean the difference between life and death. Residents can learn more on how to be ready for the next disaster by visiting or  

The Louisiana Department of Health strives to protect and promote health statewide and to ensure access to medical, preventive and rehabilitative services for all state citizens. To learn more about LDH, visit For up-to-date health information, news and emergency updates, follow LDH's blog, Twitter account and Facebook.