Ice storms, tornadoes, and flooding — Kansas has them all and more. Do you really know how long food will stay safe in the refrigerator if your power is out? Or what foods and supplies you should have on hand in case of emergencies?

Starting Sept. 1, Prepare Kansas 2016 will provide tips on keeping food safe in emergency situations. This year’s program will be conducted through the K-State Research and Extension Facebook page. No registration is required, so Kansans and anyone interested in planning ahead for emergencies can follow on Facebook at any time during September, pick up handy information and interact with K-State extension specialists and agents.

Throughout 2015, a total of 126 tornadoes occurred across the state, which made it the fourth highest year for tornados since 1950, according to the Kansas Department of Emergency Management.

“Kansas has its share of disasters, whether it’s a homeowner’s basement flooding or a fire affecting a whole block in a community. We’re committed to working with people across the state to help them be prepared for anything that comes their way,” said Kansas State University associate professor Elizabeth Kiss. “We can’t always keep disasters from happening, but we know that being as prepared as possible, whether it’s making an emergency kit or having copies of your financial and personal information in a separate, safe place, aids in the recovery from disasters.

Kiss, a K-State Research and Extension financial management specialist, produces the Prepare Kansas blog, which provides tips and resources on a range of emergency preparedness topics, including this year’s focus on food safety during September.

“It is very important to keep food safety in mind before, during and after emergencies such as power outages and floods, to help to reduce the likelihood of people getting sick from eating contaminated food. That would make a challenging situation even worse,” said Londa Nwadike, consumer food safety specialist with K-State Research and Extension. “Some of the food safety practices that are important in emergency situations are good practices to help prevent people from getting sick at any time.”

Kiss and Nwadike, along with several K-State colleagues, are delegates to the Extension Disaster Education Network, a network of extension professionals across the country working to mitigate the effects of disasters through education.

More information on Prepare Kansas will be available in September at https://www.facebook.com/KStateRE and any time at https://blogs.k-state.edu/preparekansas/.