Emergency Preparedness 2017

Do you have an emergency preparedness plan? “Disasters don’t plan ahead. You can.” Watching helplessly as members of our immediate family and countless others struggle in Houston with the hurricane, tornadoes, and flooding, I thought it timely to talk about preparing for emergencies- medical, natural, or other unexpected events.

Emergency Preparedness- Ready.gov

FEMA has lots of very helpful information for emergency planning. They have designated September as National Preparedness Month. They also have an app for additional disaster resources, safety tips, and weather alerts.  www.ready.gov/september

Emergency Preparedness- Documentation
  1. List your medications, doctor’s contact information, insurance policy information
  2. Have your home & auto insurance policy numbers & phone numbers in one place
  3. Copies of passports, birth certificates, and other related legal paperwork
  4. Credit card and banking information
  5.  Lawyer, accountant, banking contacts, mortgage and other major creditors’ information

I would recommend scanning or filing this information into your phone. The information should be accessible by more than one person, in case you are incapacitated. Don’t use a smart phone? Gather and make copies of the pertinent information. Store it in a plastic zip lock bag with your other emergency essentials.

Items stored in a safety deposit box at the bank should also be placed in secure plastic bags. These spaces can also flood and the bank insurance won’t necessarily cover your valuables.

Emergency Preparedness- Pack Your Bag

Have several days of your medications, clothing, good walking shoes, food, electronics and chargers, battery powered or crank operated radio, flashlight, extra batteries…. You can complete the list as it best suits you and your family. At least have your list prepared and the essential items stored conveniently in case of a required speedy evacuation.

Emergency Preparedness- Travel Considerations

Whether domestic or international trips are in your future, check your medical insurance policy so that you know what out of pocket expenses you might incur out of network. You should also consider travel insurance if going out of the country. Per trip and annual policies are available. Not only will there be some level of medical coverage, there are usually components for family assistance and medical transport back home, if required.

Consider those extra supplies to pack: batteries, duct tape, safety pins, sewing kit, etc.

Emergency Preparedness- At Home

Have an emergency plan, both for staying at home or evacuating. Make sure everyone in the family is familiar with it. Have a contact person outside your immediate vicinity to serve as communications central. Have cash on hand for when the electricity is out and credit cards and ATMs don’t work. Have non-perishable food, bottled water, books, games, paper & pencil to help pass the time.

This is hardly an all-inclusive list. I hope it is a beginning for your own plans and preparations; just in case.  And, my sincere hope that you will never have to use any of it for emergency reasons.

 

 

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