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Emergency Preparedness for People with Disabilities

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Public Alerts

The joint City of Portland and Multnomah County community emergency notification system is able to send phone, text/SMS and email alerts to addresses within Multnomah County. Emergency responders use the system to notify residents and businesses affected during an emergency. Their alerts often suggest safety actions such as staying inside or evacuating.

The system is preprogrammed with local landline phone numbers from phone company records. To receive messages by email, text, cell phone or Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), residents must register relevant contact information at

The notification system is just one of several tools used by emergency responders to alert the public. It is not activated in all situations. Emergency information is also provided through broadcast and print media, social media, the website and the Emergency Alert System (EAS) on TV and radio.

Sign Up Here.

Neighborhood Emergency Team

If you are a person with a disability and would like to be trained and certified as a member of your Neighborhood Emergency Team (NET), contact the Portland Bureau of Emergency Management (PBEM) at or (503) 823-4375. 

You can find more information about NET training by visiting NETs.

Emergency Preparedness Online Training and Workbook

Emergencies and disaster happen quickly and without warning, forcing people to evacuate or shelter in their home.  This can be challenging for anyone but for a person with a disability it can be a matter of life and death. In other disaster situations like Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Sandy, people with disabilities were most affected and were among the highest casualties.

It is important to plan ahead so you are prepared. Our video training and booklet gives you tips on staying informed, creating a support group, assembling a kit, and having plan. These tips provide people with disabilities guidance in managing communication, equipment, pets, and home hazards. The material is based on the Ready Now training developed in partnership with Oregon Office on Disability Health.

Links to a printable version of the workbooks and the various accessible versions of the training can be found below and in the navigation bar. Questions? Call 503-823-9970.

Additional Resources Ready is a National public service campaign designed to educate and empower the American people to prepare for, respond to and mitigate emergencies, including natural and man-made disasters. The website includes a "Plan" section which includes specific information for people with disabilities, families, seniors, kids, pet owners and more!

Emergency self preparedness training book:

Emergency self preparedness training video for people with disabilities:

The Additional Needs Registry

The Additional Needs Registry is currently inactive.

The City of Portlands Bureau of Emergency Management makes every effort to send vital information to the disability community during emergencies and disasters through disability-focused community-based organizations. If you do not currently receive notices or social media updates from one of these organizations, we highly encourage you to connect.

You can also sign up for Public Alerts at to make sure you are receiving updates directly from the City of Portland.

During an emergency, contact 211 by dialing 211 or 1-866-698-6155 to connect with immediate help. (Some phones that use Voice Over Internet Protocol or WiFi calling may need to call 1-866-698-6155).

Call 911 if you are having an emergency and need police, fire or medical response.

311 is now operating seven days a week and should also have up-to-date information on active emergency situation's.

We will continue to update the public as other resources may evolve.