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In advance of the forecasted severe winter storms, FirstEnergy utility companies are prepared to respond to any outages in our service territory.

Customers who are without power are encouraged to call 1-888-LIGHTSS (1-888-544-4877) to report their outage or click the “Report Outage” link on In the event of severe weather, customers should immediately report downed wires to their utility or their local police or fire department. Customers should never go near a downed power line, even if they think it is no longer carrying electricity.

FirstEnergy customers also can utilize a new free smartphone app to report outages and access important information and services related to their electric accounts. The app is available for Apple® iPhone® and Android™ smartphones. Customers can use the keyword "FirstEnergy" to locate the apps in the online store.


Extreme Cold Weather Info

Flu Facts for Your Family:
Simple Steps can Stop the Spread

Board of Commissioner's Extreme Cold Weather Press Release

Extreme Cold Weather Tips

Extreme Cold Weather Preparedness - Seniors

Pet Owner Preparedness

Welcome to Portage Prepares, your local resource for information on how to respond in emergencies

Portage Prepares is a county-wide, long-term education program for preparing sectors of the county’s communities to meet the challenges of weather, disasters, health emergencies and other types of incidents in order to be safe, reduce risks of injury and reduce property destruction.


Who will find this site useful:
  •  Individuals and families
  •  Schools, our university and colleges
  •  Older adults living in Portage County
  •  Community leaders
  •  Persons with disabilities
  •  Elected officials
  •  Community organizations
  •  Faith-based communities
  •  Organizations that provide care to persons with disabilities


Portage Prepares objectives:

  • To educate Portage County citizens about how to prepare for the challenges of major weather events, disasters, health emergencies and other types of incidents
  • To prepare citizens to be self-sufficient for the first 72 hours of an emergency and/or disaster





March 2014

Tornado Safehouse

Tornado Loss Prevention

Tornado Newsletter

Winter Driving—Take it Slow! 

Learn Winter Weather Terms for Safety’s Sake    

Cover Up or Feel the Frostbite     

Know When to Stay Off the Road     

From Shoveling to Walking, Winter Health Risks 

Winter Safety Tips for Your Home   

Fires can be Delightful but Dangerous 

Deadly Spills at Home or Work—Get Educated!

Mercury, What you need to know...

Guidance for Cleaning up after a Fluorescent Bulb Breaks

Earthquakes Happen Everywhere!

What to Do in an Earthquake

Earthquake Guide for People with Disabilities

Avoiding Heat-Related Illnesses

Your Best Defense: Prepare

Fact: Lightning Can Strike Twice

Remember Fire Safety

Be Alert for Flash Floods

Tornado Safety Plan Can Make A Difference

Maintain Dams for Local Safety

Flu Fundamentals from Portage Prepares

Get Ready to Drop, Cover and Hold On

Resolve 2B Ready in 2013

Check back monthly for local Portage Prepares newsletters & other information.








Inspire others to act by being an example yourself, Pledge to Prepare & tell others about it!

Tornadoes are nature’s most violent storms. Spawned from powerful thunderstorms, tornadoes can cause fatalities and devastate a neighborhood in seconds. A tornado appears as a rotating, funnel-shaped cloud that extends from a thunderstorm to the ground with whirling winds that can reach 300 miles per hour. Damage paths can be in excess of one mile wide and 50 miles long. Every state is at some risk from this hazard. Some tornadoes are clearly visible, while rain or nearby low-hanging clouds obscure others.

Occasionally, tornadoes develop so rapidly that little, if any, advance warning is possible. Before a tornado hits, the wind may die down and the air may become very still. A cloud of debris can mark the location of a tornado even if a funnel is not visible. Tornadoes generally occur near the trailing edge of a thunderstorm. It is not uncommon to see clear, sunlit skies behind a tornado.









































Resources to help you PREPARE, SURVIVE and THRIVE.








Contact Portage Prepares: 

Portage County Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management
8240 Infirmary Road, (Justice Center) Ravenna, Ohio 44266
Phone: 330-297-3607 Fax: 330-297-4569
*Toll Free 1-800-772-3799

Office Hours: 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday



A program sponsored by
Portage County Commissioners


Portage Prepares is a collaborative effort of Portage County Commissioners, Portage County Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, Portage County Health Department, Mental Health & Recovery Board of Portage County, Portage County Information Technology Services, media representative Bob Long, Kent State University College of Public Health, Kent City Health Department, Portage County Township Trustees represented by Randolph Township Trustee Susan White, Robinson Memorial Hospital and the American Red Cross of Summit and Portage Counties. Copyright 2013.


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