County councillors turn emergency kit contents into gourmet fare

Cobourg Mayor Gil Brocanier and Alnwick/Haldimand Mayor John Logel spring into action

Cobourg, ON – April 15, 2015 – In preparation for the upcoming Emergency Preparedness Week, happening May 3rd—9th, Northumberland County councillors today tested their “gourmet” cooking skills using only the non-perishable foods recommended for a 72-hour emergency preparedness kit.

County Warden Marc Coombs judged the meals prepared by each of the three teams, based on both taste and presentation. Councillors crafted their dishes using items such as saltine crackers, chick peas, Spam, Alphagetti and fruit cups. Though a close competition, two teams tied for first place: Alnwick/Haldimand Mayor John Logel and Cobourg Mayor Gil Brocanier joined Brighton Mayor Mark Walas and Port Hope mayor Bob Sanderson in taking home the title.

“We like to take every opportunity to reinforce for the public the importance of emergency preparedness,” stated Warden Coombs. “This was a fun, creative way to remind residents about the necessity of having a 72-hour emergency kit at the ready. Being self-sufficient in the early hours of a crisis gives residents the security of knowing that their most pressing needs will be met while emergency services prioritize response.”

The contest was sponsored by the Canadian Red Cross, which organizes such events to bring profile to the importance of emergency planning.

“We are proud to partner with Northumberland County for this event,” indicated Terra Mitchell, Disaster Management Advisor, Canadian Red Cross. “It is motivating to see the proactive approach taken by County officials to educating the community about this important topic.”

Emergency Preparedness Week is an annual national event that takes place during the first full week of May. Activities are organized to raise awareness of the importance of having a 72-hour emergency kit, making a personal emergency plan and identifying potential local risks. The week is coordinated by Public Safety Canada, in collaboration with provincial and municipal governments.

For helpful resources on emergency planning, including checklists and schedules for building a 72-hour emergency kit, as well as how to prepare for specific emergency scenarios such as power outages and vehicle failures, residents are invited to visit the County website at, or to contact their municipal Community Emergency Management Coordinator (CEMC).

Residents are also invited to participate in a Twitter campaign being hosted by the Canadian Red Cross during Emergency Preparedness Week by sharing what personal items of interest they keep in their emergency kit, using the hashtags #InMyKit and #EPW2015.

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