3 Steps For Emergency Planning

Flood waters

A plan can make a stressful situation a much calmer one if everyone already knows what to do.

In the event of an emergency people are generally on edge and not thinking clearly. Some tend to go into hyper-drive, others are frozen stiff, people go in to shock, any number of things can happen to us emotionally, mentally and physically in an emergency situation.

Step 1 – Immediate family Plan – Gather your family together and discuss a family emergency plan.

  1. Do you have a safe meeting place in case of a home emergency? ex: Under a tree in the front yard. In a certain corner of the lawn. At a certain neighbors house that everyone feels comfortable with. Keep it simple, make it safe.
  2. What to do in case of a fire? Have a fire drill. Practice opening windows and climbing out. Have emergency ladders for people in upstairs bedrooms. Talk about breaking windows in an emergency.
  3. Talk. Talk. Talk. Talk about different emergencies that could arise and discuss a plan then Practice. Practice. Practice.

Step 2 – Extended Family Plan – Create a family calling tree so everyone can know their family is safe.

  1. Find out what each others resources are in case of an emergency. Tent, boat, bikes, dutch ovens, food, other supplies.
  2. Discuss before an emergency occurs to see who you might be able to stay with and what accommodations they have to help you and your family if need be.
  3. Do a drill. Practice the calling tree to see how long it takes for everyone to get a hold of each other.

Step 3 – Community Plan – Find out the emergency plans your city has in place.

  1. Most cities these days have a city website. Visit your city website and look under emergency, or preparedness and see what they have in place.
  2. Find out the emergency plans for your children’s schools/day care. Do they go in lock down? How long does it last? What are the procedures for picking up your children during emergencies?
  3. Find out emergency plans your church may have in place.

Things to discuss:

  • What’s the plan if Dad’s at work and Mom’s at home with the kids in an emergency?
  • What do the kids do if an emergency happens when they’re at school and Mom and Dad are both working?
  • What do kids do if they’re home alone and an intruder enters the house?
  • What’s our family plan if there’s a flood, fire, tornado, earthquake, robber, serious injury?
  • Where’s the cash?
  • Where are important family documents?

All it takes is 30 minutes to get everyone on the same page. It will be some of the best time you can spend when your family is all safely gathered in in the midst of a chaotic situation.

What have you done with your family to plan for an emergency? Post in the comments below to start a conversation!

Opening photo by Walter Siegmund

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