The Weather Channel Joins FEMA’s Ready Campaign And Ad Council To Encourage Americans To Prepare For Emergencies
PSAs Featuring TWC’s Jim Cantore debut in advance of National Preparedness Month
FEMA Public Affairs Office
For Immediate Release
August 31, 2010
WASHINGTON — In a nationwide effort to encourage all Americans to take steps to prepare for possible emergencies, the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) Ready Campaign and The Advertising Council have joined today with The Weather Channel® (TWC) to launch a new series of public service advertisements (PSAs). The PSAs are an extension of the national Ready PSA Campaign and will be distributed in advance of National Preparedness Month (NPM) in September.
"These PSAs provide another opportunity to reach Americans about the importance of preparedness," said Craig Fugate, FEMA Administrator. "While we closely monitor Hurricane Earl and other storms in the Atlantic, FEMA continues to remind the public to take steps now to prepare for severe weather and to help keep their family safe."
Created by TWC, the new television PSAs feature TWC's on-camera meteorologist Jim Cantore and a real family who lost their home to a natural disaster. Cantore encourages all Americans to follow the Ready Campaign's three simple steps to be prepared for emergencies: (1) Get an emergency supply kit; (2) Make a family emergency plan; and (3) Be informed about the types of emergencies that can happen in your area and their appropriate responses. The PSAs direct audiences to ready.gov and www.weather.com/ready respectively, where they will find preparedness information and resources. The ads will run on TWC and will be distributed to national, cable and local broadcast networks.
"Partnering with FEMA and the Ad Council on this issue is a perfect fit for The Weather Channel Companies, as it allows us to continue to spread the message on preparation for severe weather that we have been sharing for more than 25 years," said Mike Kelly, CEO and president, TWCC.
According to an August 2009 national Ad Council survey, 91 percent of Americans agree that taking simple steps to prepare for emergencies could help protect themselves and their families in the event of an emergency. However, only 58 percent have taken any steps to prepare. More than half of Americans (52 percent) say that they are not taking steps because they believe that they are unlikely to be personally affected by an emergency.
"Millions of households presently turn to The Weather Channel to learn about inclement weather conditions in their neighborhoods, so they are an ideal partner for the Ready Campaign," said Peggy Conlon, President & CEO of the Ad Council. "The ads serve as a reminder that now is the time to follow FEMA's three simple steps so that we are all prepared for a potential disaster."
This is the first time TWC has partnered with an Ad Council campaign, as well as aired Ad Council PSAs on their network. The Department of Homeland Security and the Ad Council first launched the Ready PSA Campaign in February 2003. The campaign is now managed under FEMA. Since its launch, the campaign has generated more than $844.5 million in donated media support, ready.gov, has received more than 2.6 billion visits, and more than 54.3 million Americans have downloaded the campaign’s informational brochure. It has proven to be one of the most successful campaigns in Ad Council's 68-year history. The new PSAs will air in advertising time that will be entirely donated by the media.
February 2010 will mark the Ready Campaign's seveth year at the Department of Homeland Security. The campaign is now managed under the Department's Federal Emergency Management Agency. Launched in 2003 in partnership with The Advertising Council, Ready is designed to educate and empower Americans to prepare for and respond to emergencies, including natural disasters and potential terrorist attacks. It has proven to be one of the most successful campaigns in Ad Council's more than 66-year history. Since its launch, the Ready Campaign has generated more than $844 million in donated media support. Individuals interested in more information about family, business and community preparedness can visit ready.gov.
The Weather Channel Companies
The Weather Channel Companies (TWCC) is made up of The Weather Channel television network, The Weather Channel digital properties, and Weather Services International (WSI). The Weather Channel® is based in Atlanta and is seen in more than 100 million U.S. households. TWC also operates Weatherscan, a 24-hour all-local weather network; The Weather Channel Radio Network; and The Weather Channel HD. The digital properties of TWC, which include the weather.com® site, The Weather Channel Desktop and The Weather Channel Mobile, reach more than 40 million unique users online each month and is the most popular source of online weather, news and information according to Nielsen//NetRatings. WSI, headquartered in Andover, MA, primarily provides business-to-business weather services, particularly for the media, aviation, marine and energy sectors. TWCC is owned by a consortium made up of NBC Universal and the private equity firms The Blackstone Group and Bain Capital. For more information, visit www.weather.com/press.
The Advertising Council
The Ad Council (www.adcouncil.org) is a private, non-profit organization that marshals talent from the advertising and communications industries, the facilities of the media, and the resources of the business and non-profit communities to produce, distribute and promote public service campaigns on behalf of non-profit organizations and government agencies. The Ad Council addresses issue areas such as improving the quality of life for children, preventive health, education, community well-being, environmental preservation and strengthening families.