top of page

Preparing for a Disaster

Transportation evacuation studies reveal 660,000 people would need to get out immediately, but the already jammed expressway system can only handle 180,000 cars in three hours.

Some plans include ferrying people across Lake Michigan and relying on commuter trains. But Union Station is packed when ordinary Metra delays occur.

Sheltering in place in a nuclear event for the first 24 hours when the radioactive fallout is the strongest, would actually save more lives than anything else we could possibly do.


There are regional hubs where people can evacuate to. They include Valparaiso University, Benedictine University and Northern Illinois University.

Here are some tips for disaster planning for families with dogs in Chicago:

  • Create a disaster plan for your family and your pets. This plan should include what you will do if you need to evacuate your home, where you will go, and how you will get there with your pets. It is also important to have a plan for what you will do if you cannot evacuate, such as staying in your home or going to a friend or relative's house.

  • Make sure your pets have identification tags and microchips. This will help you to quickly reunite with your pets if they get lost during a disaster.

  • Assemble an emergency kit for your pets. This kit should include food, water, medication, a first-aid kit, a leash, a collar, and a carrier. You may also want to include a pet bed, toys, and some familiar items to help your pet feel comfortable during a stressful situation.

  • Make arrangements for your pets' care if you are unable to care for them. This could include boarding them at a kennel, having a friend or relative take care of them, or finding a pet-friendly hotel.

  • Stay informed about the latest weather forecasts and emergency alerts. This will help you to be prepared for a disaster and take action if necessary.

Here are some additional tips that are specific to Chicago:

  • Be aware of the risks of flooding and extreme cold weather. Chicago is prone to both of these hazards, so it is important to take steps to protect your pets from them.

  • Know where the nearest pet-friendly shelters are located. If you need to evacuate your home, you will need to know where you can go with your pets.

  • Get involved in your community's disaster preparedness efforts. There are many organizations in Chicago that are working to help families prepare for disasters. Get involved in one of these organizations to learn more about how to keep your pets safe.

By following these tips, you can help to keep your pets safe in the event of a disaster.
bottom of page