My Iona

Emergency Preparedness

Emergencies such as power outages, terrorist attacks, hurricanes, floods, and other weather related storms happen. The best way to receive information from Iona about on campus emergencies is to sign up for our campus emergency notification text messaging system on the Iona website. The best way to learn about off-campus emergencies is to sign up for the City of New Rochelle's emergency alert system.

Iona Emergency Notification Text Messages

City of New Rochelle Emergency Alerts

The City of New Rochelle and State of New York recommend you have at least three to five days of supplies in an easy-to-carry evacuation kit.

  • A supply of water sealed in unbreakable containers (at least 3 gallons of water per person per day).
  • Non-perishable foods that require no refrigeration and are ready to eat with little or no preparation. (Replace stored water and food every six months).
  • Non-perishable food items include an array of canned items such as: soups, fruits, vegetables, meats, juice, and milk. Other ideas include: jam, jelly, peanut butter, dried fruit, beef jerky, nuts, trail mix, sugar, salt, pepper, uncooked pasta and rice, oatmeal, instant pudding, instant potatoes, dry breakfast foods, crackers, granola bars, cookies, candy, tea, and coffee.
  • A manual can opener is essential.
  • Have a supply of disposable silverware, plates, napkins, and plastic bags with zipper closure.
  • First-aid kit (first aid manual, assorted sterile bandages, sterile gauze pads, over-the-counter medications, antiseptic ointment, activated charcoal and syrup of ipecac, soap, latex gloves, thermometer, tweezers) with at least one week's supply of prescription medications (check expiration dates). Make sure medical information and instructions are clearly written.
  • Have an extra pair of glasses and/or contact lenses (check expiration date).
  • Keep a supply of heavy duty garbage bags.
  • Stay tuned and alert: Use battery or crank powered radios with extra batteries and flashlights.
  • Have a change of clothes, rain gear, gloves, hats, and sturdy shoes available, in addition to blankets or sleeping bags. Pay attention to special items for infants, toddlers, disabled, or elderly family members.
  • Have photo identification, important papers, copies of birth certificate, insurance policies, proof of residence, tax records, marriage certificate, passports, etc.
  • Keep a list of physicians, important medical information, etc.
  • Have cash and credit cards.
  • Charge your cell phone.
  • Get a full tank of gas.
  • Keep an extra set of car and house keys.
  • Other items: screwdrivers, cutters, scissors, duct tape, waterproof matches, flares, plastic storage containers, needle and thread, pen and paper, and regular household bleach (for disinfecting).
  • Devote some time to emergency planning, and make it a part of your normal routine.
  • Discuss the types of disasters that are most likely to occur. Emergency plans can be used in response to various different disaster events.
  • Identify multiple escape routes from your home.
  • Choose two places to meet after your disaster: (1) Right outside your home in an event of fire or (2) Outside your neighborhood in case you are unable to return home.
  • Have a plan for how you will contact your family if they live outside of the local area.
  • Practice, Practice- it is important to practice the plan at least twice a year.
  • Ask an out of state friend to be your family contact. In an event of an emergency, other family members should call this person and tell them where they are. Make sure that everyone knows the emergency contact number.
  • Post emergency telephone numbers by phones (fire, police, ambulance, etc.)
  • Put emergency numbers into your cellular phone. When dialing from a cell phone, call the New Rochelle Police Department at (914) 654-2300.
  • Discuss how you would take care of your pets in an emergency.
  • Make sure your home has safety features such as fire extinguishers, smoke and gas detectors, etc.
  • Inspect your home for potential hazards that could come up in an emergency (ex. items that could move, fall, break, or catch fire).
  • Keep a written copy of how to turn off and on the electricity, gas, and water, if needed. NOTE: Do NOT turn on gas yourself.
  • Have an evacuation plan, if needed. Know possible shelter locations and have directions.
  • Local shelters include public middle and high schools in New Rochelle, most likely New Rochelle High School. City officials will designate which shelter will be used depending on the emergency. One should listen to designated radio stations (see below) and sign up now for New Rochelle's emergency alert system to be informed during an emergency.
  • If you evacuate, unplug all electrical appliances. Move items off the floor. Place loose belongings in drawers. If you have a car you will leave, put the emergency brake on, put windows up, and lock doors. Close and lock your dwelling doors and windows.

In an event of an emergency, residents should tune into their local radio and watch their local and regional television stations for emergency updates, and advisements. For local information about emergencies listen to the following news stations:

  • WFAS AM 1230/FM 103.9
  • WVOX 1460 AM/ 93.5FM
  • Channel 12 News
  • WGCH 1490 AM
  • Cable NRTV 75
  • WHUD 100.7 FM
  • Local news channels

Emergency Safety Tips

These suggestions have been developed by the Red Cross, the Westchester County Office of Emergency Management, New York State's Office of Emergency Management, and the City of New Rochelle. For additional preparedness information visit:

  • Identify safe places (ex. under sturdy furniture, against a wall, and away from glass that could shatter or bookcases/furniture that could fall).
  • During a quake, duck or drop to the floor, take cover under sturdy furniture or against a wall, hold onto the piece of furniture you are taking cover under until the shaking stops.
  • Stay away from mirrors, windows, skylights, and furniture that could fall.
  • Stay inside.
  • If you are in a high rise building, stay away from windows and outside walls. Do NOT take the elevator.
  • Expect aftershocks. They can be even stronger that the initial quake.
  • Stay out of damaged buildings.
  • Report gas leaks, downed electrical lines, and water/sewer main breaks to authorities.
  • Tape broken windows to prevent glass shards from falling during aftershocks.
  • Help neighbors or those in need if you can.
  • Learn the safest route from your home or business to high, safe ground.
  • Make a list of all valuables including furnishings, clothing and other personal property.
  • Bring possessions inside your house and tie them down.
  • If there's time, move essential items to higher floors.
  • Disconnect electrical appliances. DO NOT touch them if already wet or standing in water.
  • Secure your home: lock windows and doors.
  • Do NOT attempt to drive over a flooded road. If you are in your car when water begins to rise rapidly, abandon your car immediately.
  • Get out of your dwelling. Feel doors before opening them. If you see smoke, do not leave. If you do not see smoke, go directly to the stairway to leave.
  • Pull a fire alarm on your way out if the building is equipped with one.
  • If you cannot escape, use-wet towels to tape or seal the door or any room supply vent.
  • If you have a balcony with no fire below it, go out.
  • If there is a fire below, go to the window. DO NOT open the window, but stay near the window.
  • If there is no fire below, go to the window and open it. Stay near the open window.
  • Hang a blanket or towel out of the window to signify that you need help.
  • Never use an elevator.
  • A hurricane watch means that hurricane conditions MAY threaten an area within 24-36 hours. If a hurricane watch is issued: listen for updates, fuel your car, tape or board up windows, wedge sliding glass doors to keep them in their tracks, check for batteries, flashlights, and battery-operated radios, check on your food and water supply, bring in light weight items from outdoors that could become projectiles in high wind, have extra cash.
  • A hurricane warning means that hurricane conditions are expected within 24 hours or less. If a hurricane warning is issued: listen for updates, put up storm shutters, store loose objects, move valuables to upper floors, store drinking water in clean jugs, bottles and cooking utensils in case the water system becomes contaminated, check battery powered equipment, leave immediately (and early) if instructed to do so, leave low lying areas that could be swept away in high tide, notify family and neighbors of your evacuation plan.
  • If you must remain in your home, turn refrigerator to maximum cold and only open when necessary, turn off utilities if instructed to do so by authorities, unplug major appliances, fill large containers with water, stay away from windows and doors, close all internal doors and brace external doors, if in a two-story building: go to an interior first floor room (bathroom or closet), if in a multi-story building and away from the water, go to the first or second floors and take refuge in halls or other interior rooms away from windows. Lie on the floor or under a sturdy object.
  • Remain indoors. Do not be fooled by the "eye" of the storm that appears as a lull in the center of the storm as it moves overhead.
  • Avoid contact with corded phones.
  • Stay away from windows and doors and stay off porches.
  • Avoid contact with electrical equipment or cords. If you plan to unplug any items, do so before the storm.
  • Avoid contact with plumbing. Do not wash your hands, take a shower, wash dishes, or do laundry.
  • Avoid contact with concrete walls and floors which may contain wire mesh that conducts electricity.
  • Go to the basement or an interior room on the lowest floor. Stay away from windows.
  • Closets, bathrooms, and other interior rooms offer the best protection.
  • Get under something sturdy or cover yourself with a mattress.
  • If you are in a high rise, go to an interior small room or hallway on the lowest floor possible.
  • Do not use elevators.