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Published on March 3rd, 2016 | by Millennium Magazine Staff

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Prepare Your Cellphone In Case of Disaster

In an emergency, your phone could be your lifeline. Keep it ready and handy.

(NAPSI)—When disaster strikes, your phone could be your best friend. With more than 98 percent of Americans owning a mobile phone and more than 70 percent of 9-1-1 calls made on mobile devices, wireless helps save lives.

Be Prepared

Take eight easy steps now to ensure you and your mobile device are prepared in case of emergency.

1. Add Emergency Numbers: Keep a list of emergency phone numbers in your cellphone.

2. Appoint ICE: Designate at least one “In Case of Emergency” (ICE) contact in your phone contacts so emergency personnel know whom to contact during an emergency.

3. Inform your ICE: Tell your ICE contact about any medical issues or special needs you may have. Additionally, make sure they know how many pets you have and what to do if you’re not available.

4. Know your Battery: Be conscious of your phone’s battery life and carry a spare charger (external charging devices are especially helpful in situations when you can’t access power). To conserve your phone’s battery life:

• Turn on your phone’s power-saving mode (if it has one).

• Turn off Wi-Fi when not in use. (Your phone uses power when looking for a signal)

• Close unused apps and turn off push notifications.

• Turn off social media.

• Disable location-based ser?vices when not in use.

• Set your e-mail to arrive manually or infrequently.

• Put your device to sleep or in airplane mode whenever possible.

• Change the display settings so your screen goes to sleep faster.

• Reduce your screen brightness.

• Turn off Bluetooth when not needed.

5. Forward Home Phone: Know how to forward your home phone number to your cellphone in case you are evacuated.

6. Keep an Extra Landline: If you have a landline phone, keep at least one non-cordless phone in your home in case you need it.

7. Learn WEA: Educate yourself about Wireless Emergency Alerts—free messages from the government in emergencies.

8. Know School Emergency Info: If you have kids in school, find out how the school district will notify you in an emergency.

What To Do

During An Emergency

Remember, in a widespread emergency such as a natural disaster, wireless networks can become congested, making it difficult to place a voice call. To communicate with family and friends, consider these dos and don’ts.

DO use text messaging, e-mail or social media to let people know you’re okay. Keep it short and simple, conveying only necessary information so other people can also communicate with their loved ones.

DON’T make voice calls unless you must. Voice calls take up more space on the wireless network and it’s important to minimize unnecessary voice calls so emergency responders are able to communicate. If you must call, wait 10 seconds before redialing.

Learn More

You can get other ways to prepare for an emergency from the experts at CTIA at www.ctia.org.

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