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Survive the Big One in your own backyard

Locals issued challenge to survive disaster simulation

COURTESY GRAPHIC - Stocking up on emergency supplies is a good way to prepare for the 'Big One.'Are you ready to survive the upcoming disaster?

Stuck in your own backyard with only the contents of your disaster preparedness kit, the American Red Cross and Camp Prepare! are challenging Gresham and the rest of the Portland Metro area to camp overnight on Saturday, Aug. 6.

The challenge is an attempt to simulate a 9.0 Cascadia earthquake or similar catastrophe, which would leave survivors with only a few items. Common supplies to have would include water, canned food, flashlights, extra batteries and first aid supplies.

Camp Prepare! is a regional, coordinated camping event the whole family can participate in, taking your emergency kit on a trial run before the real deal.

"Camp Prepare! is an opportunity for people across the Pacific Northwest to combine their love of camping with preparedness," said Amy Shlossman, chief executive officer of the Red Cross Cascades Region. "Now is the time to make sure your disaster kit has everything you need should a disaster strike."

The Red Cross recommends your survival kit have at least a three-day supply of food and water — though larger disasters may require weeks of supplies. If you are having trouble deciding what to put in your survival kit, they have suggestions on their website, www.redcross.org/news/event/local/or/Prepare-Out-Loud.

To register and become an official participant, visit www.redcross.org/news/event/local/oregon/Camp-Prepare.