Crisis Preparation for your Whole Family

Crisis Preparation for your Whole Family

When wild weather strikes unexpectedly, families can be caught unprepared, leading to a range of problems. Don’t wait for disaster to strike and suffer inconvenience or loss. Take proactive steps now to keep your entire family safe and ready in case of emergency.

Develop a written emergency plan.

Everyone should have a plan that reminds family members what to do in case of a crisis. The plan should be written with copies readily available from neighbors, a bank deposit box, etc. But it should also be stored on the Web for access no matter each person’s location.

The plan should include information about where to meet in case the house or community is inaccessible. It could name an intermediary, like a distant relative, family friend, or local business organization, where everyone can get updates. Specific details about funds and resources should also be added. A concrete plan of this type can help to offset panic and provide guidance.

Establish financial backup resources.

In case of local bank closings or a widespread economic collapse, families need to know how to obtain funds to pay for things like food and temporary lodging if necessary. A cash store could be made available in a home safe to which only family members have the combination. A bank deposit box in another nearby community might suffice for keeping cash on hand. A trusted friend or family member may be asked to hold extra cash or credit cards for emergencies.

In addition, you may need quick access to stocks, bonds, and valuables for prompt liquidation if circumstances warrant. A reliable, secure storage unit might be used in addition to a lockbox for storing essentials of this type.

Set aside reserves of necessities.

Take stock of household goods that might be too easily depleted during a prolonged crisis. Stock up on survival food storage containers to preserve dry goods like cereals, grains, and similar items as well as canned items like fruits, vegetables, and meats.

Set aside important over-the-counter medications for pain relief and other common, general treatments, along with supplies like bandages and home health items. Give thought to what members of the family might need over the next six months to a year and try to stock supplies of it when possible.

Household emergency items like candles, light bulbs, and maybe a generator could come in very handy.

Obtain a water purification device and practice using it so you will be prepared if it is needed. If possible, identify an alternate water source, like an outdoor natural source such as a spring or lake, where water can be obtained and filtered for use.

Take personal safety measures.

Have every member of the family take active shooter training or similar training for personal security. The ALICE program refers to Alert, lockdown, inform, counter, and evacuate response to immediate onsite danger. Many schools and businesses offer this training free. Find out where it is offered near you so everyone can be prepared in the event of a public assault or home invasion.

Update your insurance coverage.

Although protecting your family’s safety is paramount in a crisis, your belongings will be important eventually when things begin to return to normal. Meet with your insurance agent to review your insurance coverage. Update various policies if needed to ensure everyone and everything is adequately protected. You may want to consider additional coverage for acts of terrorism, so discuss it with your agent.

None of us want to believe that a terrible tragedy could strike our homes or communities. But just in case it happens, you want to be as prepared to escape or minimize damage as much as possible. Take action steps now so you or loved ones won’t be caught off-guard. You might even want to share these tips with neighbors or coworkers.

Lee Flynn

Lee Flynn

Freelance writer who promotes home safety and preparedness through the proper use of food storage and emergency equipment. He is an expert on protection preparedness.
Lee Flynn

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