Every family needs to prepare for emergencies. No one can predict when or where events like terrorists attacks will occur, but they are aware of specific threats in their area. Fire, tornados, hurricanes, earthquakes, floods, mudslides and extreme winter weather are causes of potential emergencies that are prone to happen in certain areas of the country.
To keep your family, friends, home and community as safe as possible preparing for an emergency is more than stashing a few items in the basement. Information is equally as important as supplies. Research the community, government, county and non-profit resources that provide assistance during disasters. Find out what each entity offers such as food, shelter and other emergency services. Once you have the information you need, educate your family on the available resources.
Teach your children how to dial 911 and then put an emergency plan in place so everyone knows what to do. Have a strategy for both staying in your home, and exiting the premises. Everyone needs to know how to exit the residence and where to meet each other outside. Stress the importance of keeping your vehicles full of gas to every driver in the home. If you are able to drive your vehicles, it may be days or longer before you have access to fuel. An interrupted gas supply and loss of power will both have a bearing.
Now you are ready to gather those items for an emergency preparedness kit. There are basic items to have on hand for at least a 3-day period. Included is water, emergency food storage, blankets, first aid kit, crank radio, flashlights, batteries, candles, matches, hygiene items, can opener, medications, cash and a small toolkit. If room allows, helmets or hard hats protect people from falling or flying debris. Check your emergency supplies every 6-months and replace food, water, medications and batteries. There are supplies that can help in an emergency that are unique to specific events.
Flood danger could include sand bags and a life raft. Hurricanes, tornados and earthquakes often need plywood to board up broken windows and other damage caused by the event. Although not normally considered an emergency item, you often see spray paint used to mark SOS on damaged or flooded dwellings alerting authorities that you need help. The frequency of natural disasters is more prevalent than ever, so protect your family against them to the best of your ability.