Emergency Plan Basics
So, you think you should start preparing for an emergency "outage" of some proportion. Good for you. The more people who are prepared the better. But don’t make a common mistake that many make; trying to do too much too fast. They either get frustrated and quit or think they’re all set but find they missed some important basics. Unless you have a lot of extra money to install a bunker/shelter and buy a couple of years worth of food at the drop of the hat, you need to start slow and in phases.
Most people don't plan to fail; they fail to plan
Prior Planning Prevents Poor Performance
QUIZ YOURSELF: Are You Prepared for a Disaster?
A common misunderstanding to preparing is for some end of the world situation or Hollywood doomsday scenario. Truth is, it's not about preparing for some statistical anomaly, but for the real life challenges that we are all going to face at some point in our lives; the kind of situations that will feel like the end of your world if you're not prepared. Consider these reasons to have a real, documented plan:
- Long-term Power Outages
- Loss of Income
- Natural Disasters
- Fire or Explosion
- Crime, Assaults and Home Invasions
- Social Unrest
- Terrorist Attacks
- National Economic Disasters
- The Aftermath: Post-Disaster Threats
- It’s NOT just like camping
- You CAN'T buy enough food and supplies to last forever
- Your neighbors will NOT gather around and help each other when things go bad
- "Gadgets" are a waste of money you need for real preparations. Gadgets break and you will have to learn to live without them anyway.
- There's a very good chance you may NOT get to your survival location when things go bad
- You CAN'T convince your "significant other" this is a good idea
- You DO need to prepare a special place to go (near or far) - just in case you can't get home or your home is uninhabitable
- Your kids will NOT be bored. They will learn so many new ways of living, so many daily activities and chores, connecting with nature in so many new ways, they won’t have time to be bored. Allow them the freedom to discover things like what bugs are in the grass around your home, what plants to grow for food or medicine, what wildlife is still abundant on this beautiful land. If your attitude is one of wonder and not worry, so will theirs be. Help them look at this as an adventure, not a burden.
START WITH THE BASICS:
- Write down (document) your plan. Don't rely on your memory or ability to calmly handle an actual emergency when anxiety and panic are normal responses.
- Include any other people and/or pets who are part of your household, and record any special needs.
- List a place to meet or go in case you are not at home, or together, when disaster strikes. List alternate locations, in sequence, if the others (including your home) are not accessable or you need to evacuate the area completely.
- Consider and List the locations of out-of-area family and friends, local Emergency Shelters, Hospitals, Parks, Arenas, etc.
- List friends/family (local and out of state) to contact (addresses and phone numbers) as a hub of communication if you cannot directly communicate with one another.
- Start with a solid 72 hour plan and supplies kit for each person, being on your/their own for at least 3 days without any utility services. Look at what you already have to start your supplies and think about alternative uses for those things. The basic areas to consider are:
- Review and update your plan frequently with those included in your plan. Adjust and update as needed. This can help reduce anxiety and panic during an actual emergency.
- Each person should have a printed copy of the plan to store with their individual emergency supplies kit.
- Review your plan when current events happen that could escallate into a real bad situation.
Now, 3 days is simple and doesn’t take a lot of money. Start there. When you've planned and saved for 3 days, begin working on plans for 2 weeks which will require you to look a little deeper into things. When you’re set for 2 weeks go for a month, then 3 months, then 6 months, etc. Don’t forget about situations where you or a member of your family/group, might not be at home when disaster strikes. Also consider working with others, just be careful who you confide in.
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