Because September was “National Preparedness Month” in the United States I am encouraging readers to set aside time to plan for emergencies that - hopefully – will never happen where we live.
Last week I listed the first 5 of the 10 questions that, when answered, will assess ones’ level of personal preparedness for an emergency or natural disaster. The idea is to develop a personal “score” that can then be converted into a “to-do” list to improve our level of personal readiness.
Check these next 5 questions to develop a plan to get better prepared (see the 5 from last week here):
6. Have we identified a person outside our region to be the central point of contact for members of our family?
Even when local land-line phones and cell phones are compromised, often long-distance phone communication is available. This also assists regional first-responders who may need local communication assets during the response period following an incident.
7. Do we have a means of recharging our cell-phone and/or tablet?
It is a good idea to invest in a small power pack and if our system allows, an external battery for our cell phones/tablets?
In many instances cell phone communication may break down; yet in some instances texting and/or email has proven to have a greater chance of surviving and/or being restored ahead of voice communications.
8. Do we have an emergency food supply for our pet(s)?
The American Red Cross now permits people to include their pets in (or adjacent to) emergency shelters (service animals will be allowed to shelter with their owner). Accordingly, the go-kit described above should include food, water, and vaccination records for our pets.
9. Do we have a current first aid kit in our home, your go-bag, and our car(s)?
Check to verify that everything in the first-aid kit is current, including things like antibiotics, aspirin, first aid cream and bandages.
10. Have we completed a CPR or first aid training course and is our training up to date?
It is not possible to be too well trained! By increasing basic first aid and CPR skills we can not only attend to the needs of our own households; we may also be able to assist with others in our neighborhood, workplace, school, etc.
In addition to the tens things discussed in this blog series (see the first 5 here), it is a good idea to know how to turn off the gas, electricity and water coming into our house.
The goal in providing this information is to cooperate with the request by the Government – both local and national – to be prepared to take care of ourselves and our loved ones for several days - or two weeks - until the first responders can get a grip on the overall scenario and begin to provide a longer-term resolution.
Our goal: Let's become part of the solution and take personal responsibility so that we do not add to the layers of complexity and need in the event an emergency situation arises.
Photo Credit: Zhen Hu