In any emergency, the central office of the telephone company can be completely overwhelmed with calls. Make only emergency calls. Do not call 911 or the police for general information. When you do pick up the receiver, you may not receive a dial tone immediately and may have to wait as long as 30 seconds to a few minutes -- stay on the line. Do not click the receiver button, as this cuts you off each time and may delay your call. Depending upon the severity of the emergency, and assuming the phone lines are indeed working, telephone circuits into other areas may be overloaded and your call will receive only a fast busy signal or an "all circuits are busy" recording; hang up and try your call again. Remember, if you must make a call, make it as brief as possible as there will be thousand of others attempting to make calls also.
In the event of general and backup power systems failure, plan for life with no television for the duration.
If you have young children, this may affect you more than those who don't. Prepare by having plenty of games available.
Radio is more likely to be available than television. Make sure you have a portable, battery-operated AM/FM radio with good reception. If your radio is battery-operated, make sure you have enough batteries for at least a week of continuous play.
For information regarding a locally declared emergency, tune in to the following stations: