Do you know what to do when a disaster strikes? Do your children? By creating and practicing an emergency safety plan, you can protect your family when natural disasters happen. Wildfires, tornadoes, hurricanes and earthquakes each require special preparations, including emergency kits with food, water, first aid, medicines and blankets.
Fires. The National Fire Protection Association advises you to have at least two ways to escape the home in case of fire. Practice fire drills with your children at least twice a year so they can identify safer escape routes from anywhere in the home.
Tornadoes. Tornadoes are fast, unpredictable and destructive. The Red Cross recommends the safest shelter for the family are rooms without windows, such as interior rooms, closets, hallways or a storm shelter/basement, if available.
Hurricanes. The Insurance Information Institute suggests learning where the nearest public shelters and evacuation routes are before hurricane season begins.
Earthquakes. Earthquakes happen without warning and can be followed by powerful aftershocks. Ready.gov says to practice drop, cover and hold-on drills, like getting under a sturdy desk or table, against an interior wall or in the jamb of a door on a load-bearing wall.
Before disaster strikes, review your homeowner’s insurance and make sure you’re covered for flooding and wind damage. Upload photographs of your home and valuables to the cloud. Keep valuables, important files and priceless photographs in a safety deposit box and prepare your emergency kit.