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IEMA, state fire marshal offer holiday gift ideas

Preparedness, safety gifts for everyone on your shopping list

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[December 17, 2012]  SPRINGFIELD -- With holiday shopping in full swing, the Illinois Emergency Management Agency and the Office of the Illinois State Fire Marshal encourage shoppers to consider presents and stocking stuffers that could save lives during emergencies.

Gifts such as NOAA Weather Alert radios, flashlights and first-aid kits can help friends and family prepare for disasters, while smoke alarms, carbon monoxide detectors and fire extinguishers will make their homes safer.

"Many people would appreciate a gift that will help them stay safe during disasters," said IEMA Director Jonathon Monken. "It can be as small as a flashlight tucked in a stocking to a fully stocked vehicle preparedness kit to keep them safe during treacherous winter travel."

Monken said a vehicle preparedness kit is easy to assemble. A backpack or rubber tub can be stocked with items such as a flashlight, extra batteries, blankets, jumper cables, first-aid kit, windshield scraper, small shovel, water bottles and some nonperishable snack foods.

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State Fire Marshal Larry Matkaitis said fire safety and prevention gifts, such as foldable ladders for second-story emergency escapes and flameless scented candles, are also great gift ideas.

"This season is about showing how much we care for our loved ones. Adding an affordable, lifesaver gift in stocking stuffers is a great expression of love to anyone," said Matkaitis.

Most preparedness and safety gift items can be found in hardware and department stores.

For additional information on emergency preparedness, visit the Ready Illinois website at The OSFM website,, offers more information about fire safety.

[Text from Illinois Emergency Management Agency and Office of the State Fire Marshal file received from the Illinois Office of Communication and Information]

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