Emergency Checklists Provide Peace of Mind
Eventually, every family will face some kind of an emergency situation – whether it’s an earthquake, a bad storm, fire or flood, the odds are that at some point, we all will we need to be prepared for some type of a serious crisis. That’s when an emergency checklist becomes so important. A simple list, thought out in advance, can provide the direction and information your family will need in any emergency. Yet surprisingly, few families take the time to make one, leaving them unprepared for a crisis situation.
An emergency checklist is a comprehensive list of the things everyone in your family needs to know in case of an emergency. It is the ‘go-to’ item that is easy to make and may actually save lives in a crisis situation. While emergency checklists can be as extensive as you can imagine, a good, sound checklist should include the following items at a minimum:
- Establish your family’s meeting place(s). You should make at least two entries: one near your home to use in case of a fire or other home emergency; and secondly, a place outside your neighborhood where you can meet should your immediate vicinity be affected by a crisis.
- Make a home evacuation plan. In case of a fire, everyone should be aware of the fastest and safest ways to evacuate your home. You should then all meet in your predetermined neighborhood meeting location.
- Emergency contact phone list. This should have all of your family’s cell phone numbers, your closest neighbors numbers, doctors and vet’s numbers. It should also include at least one out of state family member or friend’s number in case your family has been forced to evacuate separately.
- A complete list of all medications and allergies for each family member.
- Social media contact info. Your entire family should know and agree to contact each other via social media in the event of a disaster. You should also discuss which apps you will all have downloaded and installed on your cell phones, like FEMA or Life360. FEMA will keep you posted on the status of earthquakes, floods, hurricanes and the like, while an app like Life360 will allow you to set up your own family’s private network. There are lots of options available, so discuss which is best for your family and then make sure everyone has it and knows how to use it.
- Pet’s buddy. Assign one or more family members with the task of getting your pets out of danger and bringing them to your family meeting site. They should also be aware of any medications or allergies emergency responders may need to know.
- Bug Out Kit assignee. Compile and store your emergency to-go kit in an easy to get to place and then assign (usually a parent) one person with the responsibility of evacuating with it and bringing it to your meeting place. For easy to use and affordable grab and go kits, you can go HERE.
Holding a family meeting and compiling your emergency checklist will provide everyone with the peace of mind that comes with emergency preparedness. How well your family responds to a crisis may depend on how well they understand and utilize your emergency checklist. Take the first step in family safety preparation by creating your own emergency checklist today.