ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — A state program that trains citizens on how to respond to natural disasters and man-made calamities has hit a milestone.

State officials announced Thursday that more than 250,000 New Yorkers have now participated in the Citizen Preparedness Training initiative.

The program teaches people how to prepare their families and communities for disasters and teaches tips for what to do during emergencies. It's taught by state homeland security officials, fire and emergency personnel and the American Red Cross. Training sessions are held online and throughout the state.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo launched the program in 2014. He said that with extreme weather on the rise it's important that residents know what to do when severe storms, floods or other disasters occur.

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