Fires and other disasters strike without warning. The best way to protect your home and your family is to be prepared and make a Family Emergency Plan.
Last year’s fire season in California was the largest on record. The smoke covered California, large parts of Nevada, up the coast to Oregon, and Washington. The fire season was so intense tracking the progress got more attention on California prime time than the spread of the pandemic.
Sadly, many were not prepared nor had a family emergency plan.
- Many families lost everything including loved ones.
- The town of Paradise burned off the map.
- Ancient groves of sequoias, redwoods, and Joshua trees burned and are no more.
We don’t have to be fearful. When you prepare, you take back control and give yourself peace of mind.
In How to Prepare Your Home for Fire Season 2021, we covered what to do to the outside of your home. Here is a quick recap of the steps you should take:
- Step One: Clean up your yard.
- Step Two: Create a defensible space of at least 60 feet
- Step Three: Add fire-resistant landscaping and plants
- Step Four: Use fire-resistant materials on your home and fencing
How Do You Make A Family Emergency Plan?
Keeping your family safe is not a one-day activity. It is a process with specific steps that, when followed, give you greater peace of mind.
Step 1: Write Your Family Emergency Plan
Step 2: Practice the Plan with Your Family
Step 3: Update Your Plan Annually
Step 1: Write Your Family Emergency Plan
You may be thinking, “This sounds good, but where do I start?”
To make writing your family plan easier, we have created a pdf fillable Family Emergency Plan for you. The advantage of being a pdf fillable form is you can type in your details, save and print then post on your fridge. You can revise it at any time.
Click here to download your Family Emergency Plan now!
Section 1: List of Family Members & Contact Information
The first thing to write down is the names of your family you want your Family Emergency Plan is to protect. Don’t forget to add your extended family who may be living alone and your pets.
You will want to list
- Each Person’s Name
- The relationship in the family – parents, child #1, child #2, child #3, grandma, etc.
- All those with cell phones or work phones
- Pet details
Section 2: Plan of Action
In this section, you need to identify the potentials and write up solutions.
- The first step is to identify the dangers in your area.
Everyone knows that California is prone to earthquakes.
Did you know that California is also susceptible to forest fires, mudslides, wind storms, heatwaves, and fog so thick you cannot see your hand in front of your face?
- The next thing to identify is the emergency exits in your home.
When disaster strikes, you may not be able to use your regular routes. Map out how to get out of your house if your hallways and main doors are blocked.
- Address the potential to be separated
No one likes to think about what happens if you get separated from your loved ones during a disaster. However, acknowledge this is a potential and designate meet-up points on your property, in your neighborhood, and your community.
- Being Evacuated or Can’t Return Home?
Usually, meeting at home would be a safe spot. However, in some cases, that is not possible. You may be required to evacuate and stay out. Designate additional meet-up points in your neighborhood and community and have alternative routes to these places.
- Emergency Contact
If your household is separated and cannot contact each other, designate an emergency contact outside of the area. Everyone will need to call this person so the designated emergency contact can pass all of the messages to everyone and family outside the affected area.
Section 3: Everyone has a Part to Play
Give everyone a job. Even if the job is small, this inclusion is personally empowering and validating.
Inclusion also reinforces the concepts of teamwork, mutual accountability, and love. Recognize that it is everyone’s responsibility to keep the family safe. Then allow everyone to do their part.
Section 4: Notes
There will always be extra that needs to be written down. For example, each season brings with it a different set of challenges.
Put your solutions to these season challenges here. Use this knowledge when you do your annual review.
Step 2: Practice, Practice Practice
Time has a way of dimming memories and essential facts.
Practice at least once a season or every three months. Use the season change to test your family emergency plan. What works in the heat of summer may not work in the fog of winter. You may need to reassess your preparations and plan accordingly.
Step 3: Review & Revise Your Family Emergency Plan Annually
Review your family’s emergency plan every year. Take into account what you have learned and the changes in your family’s structure.
Safety is a top priority for Spartan Junk Removal. We care about our customers, our employees, and our community.
If you would like more ideas on how Spartan Junk Removal can free up your life, please give us a call (209) 872-0323.