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Make An Emergency Preparedness Plan For Your Family

by Ivy B

Among all the things you want your kids to learn, you’ve got to incorporate safety into your parenting repertoire.  3 important questions to ask when creating an emergency preparedness plan for your family.

I previously told you about the unexpected evacuation my kids and I took in 2017.  Although we know the types of disasters to plan for in our area, we’d become pretty lackadaisical.  Having grown up in North East Florida, I was accustomed to losing power, hearing a lot of wind, and maybe losing a few trees.

Never had I felt the devastating effects of our regular hurricane seasons, nor had I ever evacuated.

But, 2017 changed that for me and my family.  Sadly, I wasn’t exactly prepared and realized things could have been much worse.

In light of the situation, I would be remiss to not share some of the things I learned about having an emergency preparedness plan for your family.

Sooner or later, your family will encounter a natural disaster or other emergency situation.  These can be high-stress situations requiring immediate action to protect yourself and family from harm.  Without having a plan in place, the situation is only made worse by confusion.

Having a family emergency plan in place will alleviate some stress and make it easier and quicker to find a safe situation.

So, what can you do to prepare your family, ahead of time, for an emergency?

Let’s face it. Sooner or later your family will encounter a natural disaster or similar emergency event that requires you to jump into action to stay safe and sound. Doing so will become much easier when you go in prepared and with a plan. Here are three basic questions that you should ask yourself to formulate an emergency preparedness plan for your family.

3 topics to discuss before making an emergency preparedness plan for your family.
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This is the 2nd part of the Emergency Preparedness for Families Series:

Emergency Preparedness for Families Series:
  1. Discussing the types of disasters to prepare for as a family
  2. How to Make an Emergency Preparedness Plan For Your Family (this post)
  3. Survival Food Storage Ideas for Families in a Disaster
  4. Must-Have Supplies for Your Family Disaster Survival Kit
  5. How to Stay Positive During an Evacuation Trip with Kids

Questions to Ask to Come Up With an Emergency Preparedness Plan For Your Family

These three basic questions will help your family come up with an emergency plan.

Where Can We Go?

car moving on road - where can you go family emergency prep plan

When an emergency situation arises, you need to know where you can seek shelter.

In some instances, staying home is an option.  As I said, here in North Florida, we’re not often required to evacuate.  Staying at home has worked for us for many years.

But, if you feel safer, or are required, to evacuate your town or state, where will you go?  Where will you stay?

Discuss with family and friends in and out of state whether or not you can evacuate to their home in an emergency.  If you have pets, are you able to bring them along?

Additionally, think about possible scenarios in an emergency situation or natural disaster.

Whether or not you have people willing to take you and your family in, you’ll also need to have an idea of hotels you may need to stay at in the first leg of your evacuation.  Have a list of hotel addresses and phone numbers on your most likely evacuation route(s) in case traffic delays the ability to arrive at a friend or family member’s home.

These are important decisions that are easier made when you’re not in the middle of a stressful emergency situation.

How Will We Stay In Touch?

How will we stay in touch? Discuss communication Emergency Preparedness Plan For Your Family

Think about how you’ll accomplish staying in touch with loved ones.  Also consider how you’ll be able to get new and emergency alerts or announcements.

Start with ensuring everyone has a mobile phone.  Devices need to be charged and chargers need to be readily available.

Having an additional battery or backup power supply will come in handy as well.

In the midst of an emergency, it’s important to be conservative with your device usage so that you can make battery power last as long as possible.  If your children have mobile devices, discuss with them the importance of this as well and remind them when necessary.

Don’t rely on just your smart phones and mobile devices for news updates and communication.  A backup plan will come in handy when signals are poor, non-existent, or you’ve run out of power.

If you can’t get hold of each other, have a designated meeting point or person everyone contacts.

Finally, having a [easyazon_link keywords=”weather radio” cloak=”n” locale=”US” localize=”y” nw=”y” nf=”y” tag=”ivsvabasaan0a-20″]weather radio[/easyazon_link] is a great backup solution for updates on what’s going on.

What Supplies Do We Need?

Emergency supplies for disaster survival kit

You’ll be more safe and comfortable the more prepared you are!

The supplies you need to have on hand depend on the natural disaster or emergency you are facing.

Other factors to consider are:

  • Where you live
  • Your family members
  • Pets
  • The weather

Begin by ensuring you have survival basics for all family members (including pets).  These are food, water, shelter, and medications.

Once you have covered the essentials for living, think about some creature comforts you’d like.  Things like light and entertainment can go a long way to reducing stress, especially for children.  Have a camping light, books, and easy games can make a power outage with kids a little more pleasant.

As a bonus, having a camping stove and special snacks can even make an emergency situation feel more like an adventure, which can really help kids not focus on the negative situation at hand.

Having an emergency preparedness plan for your family is an excellent way to ensure better moods and survival outcomes.  And while no one really wants to think of their families in an emergency situation, not having a plan only puts everyone at greater risk for harm.

A Free Printable Emergency Preparedness Workbook

If you loved my tips for making an emergency preparedness plan for your family, why not grab this Family Emergency Preparedness Workbook.  Simply join my newsletter.  You’ll receive this as well as a number of free printables in a resources library for parents.

family disaster preparedness free printable

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Bri Adams May 10, 2018 - 1:28 pm

This is super smart. We’ve done a pretty good job of having emergency supplies and food storage but I’ve never considered mapping out the hotels and gas stations on our route. We’d head to my parent’s house on the farm but it’s a 3 1/2 hour drive normally. Who knows how long it would take in an emergency.

Ivy B May 11, 2018 - 9:47 am

Plan for roughly double in an emergency. I mean, here in Florida, it’s not like we can head SOUTH to get away from anything, so we can’t spread the traffic to anywhere but North. 😐

Brittany May 11, 2018 - 9:41 am

Good article! Preparation is so important! I live in Oklahoma so this is very relevant to me.

Ivy B May 11, 2018 - 9:44 am

Awesome, I’m so glad you found it helpful <3

George Hervey July 4, 2019 - 8:51 am

I’m not really superstitious but I value being prepared. I was a scout back in the day and ‘always be prepared’ was our slogan. great post, more people should read such posts to learn. Thank you great works

Sam Gibson July 30, 2019 - 8:59 pm

Ivy, thanks for sharing this great information on how to help have an emergency preparedness plan for your family. My wife and I are starting to put together a plan for an emergency. We’re hoping to find good water containers to help store fresh water.

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