1. Create a set of plans.
Create a set of plans for various situations your family may be likely to encounter. Fire, flooding, and local storms or disasters should be planned for. Brainstorm about what your family and/or home would need in any of these situations.
2. Gather supplies for emergency kits.
It's a good idea to make at least the basics of your emergency kits portable, storing them in backpacks or duffel bags. Each member of the family can have their own pack. Don't forget to update the emergency kits seasonally to make sure that needs for any emergency can be met. Have a separate supply kit stored in the car as well for roadside emergencies and issues. Larger parts of an emergency kit can be stored together in the home.
3. Practice your plan.
A plan will only work if everyone in the family knows their role. Practice fire drills with a pretend fire located in different sections of the home. Tornados, hurricanes, earthquakes, and flooding are all scenarios that may happen in your area. Practice for the storms or natural disasters that may be likely to occur in your neighborhood.
Practice calmly. I'm always impressed by how calmly most students are able to participate in fire and natural disaster drills at school. It's because there is a great example of calm from the school leaders and adults. Practice this calm attitude in your family drills.
Share your plan with extended family members so that they know where your family is likely to evacuate and how your emergency plan will unfold.
4. Update the plan as needed.
Your plan and supplies will need to be updated as changes unfold in your family. If you have changes in the number of family members extra supplies may need to be added. If new health issues arise with your family you may need to adjust the included supplies.
If you have changes in insurance coverage or financial records, those will need to be updated as well.
5. Take comfort in your planning.
Preparation for disaster can be frustrating and scary, but take a few moments to feel comfort and confidence in your planning. While you may hope you never need your preparations, you'll be ready if you do.
For more information visit Ready.Gov for information.