As a Dad, tasked with protecting his family, you no doubt understand the severity and importance of being prepared for anything. Natural disasters happen, whether we’re ready for them or not.
The Colorado wildfires destroyed an estimated 2,931 acres. It’s tough to imagine how many of those affected were prepared for such a thing.
Hurricane Maria decimated the Dominican Republic, and not much later, Hurricane Irma slammed into the Caribbean and the southeastern U.S. A 7.1 earthquake devastated Mexico in September, killing over 200 people. Hurricane Harvey caused extreme flooding in Texas. Bangladesh saw severe monsoon rain that was responsible for the deaths of over 1,200 people and severe flooding.
These are just a handful of the worst natural disasters from 2017, most of which caused severe damage and harm to many people. Since the beginning of the 20th century, have resulted in 8 million deaths and more than $7 trillion in economic damage.
You never know when you and your family could be at risk, and as a parent, it's your job to protect not just your kids, but everyone in your family, including pets.
So, how do you ensure your children and family are prepped for the worst?
For starters, make sure you create an evacuation and meetup plan that expressly states where your family will go in certain situations. If there's a house fire, for example, where should your children wait after they leave the house? It's also vital that you come up with multiple routes to your meeting place, especially with smaller children. If one pathway is blocked, you want everyone to know how to reach safety.
Also, be sure to practice your evacuation plan at least twice a year so that everyone knows where they're supposed to go and what they're supposed to do before a disaster occurs. This is important because during a crisis people are known to become flustered and confused. If they've practiced an evacuation plan regularly though, they know how to get out and where to go without thinking.
In slow-acting disasters—such as hurricanes—where you have time to prepare, make sure everyone knows their role. Who's responsible for packing what, and what tasks do they need to complete? You, for instance, might be responsible for boarding up the windows and setting up a huddle room in the home.
Prepare Emergency Kits
Before a major event occurs, make sure you have emergency kits packed that will be suitable for your entire family, and if you have pets, pack supplies for them too.
Here are some things you should include in all emergency kits:
· First aid and medical supplies
· At least one gallon of water per person per day
· Canned foods, dry foods and related supplies
· Flashlights and batteries
· Important documents such as birth certificates, passports and social security cards
· At least $1,000 in physical cash
· Radio for staying up-to-date
· Cell phone and charger
Preparing for Disaster
Of course, each form of disaster has its own set of instructions and warnings you should be aware of. Preparing for a tornado or earthquake, for example, is going to be different than preparing for a hurricane.
This infographic will walk you through preparing for each type of disaster, including a severe winter storm. Make sure you’re ready for all these types of events, especially the ones that are most common in your area.
Natural disasters can have devastating consequences, but if you adequately prepare for them, you can substantially reduce the impacts they have on your family. Follow these tips, and you'll have peace of mind knowing that you're prepared to keep your family safe if disaster strikes.