I then placed these items in storage containers and kept them on the shelves in my closet. We are all aware that power outages for extended periods of time are very common during a hurricane, so I snagged a ton of batteries, flashlights, candles, matches, and lighters. I kept all my items in a drawer to avoid possible water damage.
I also strived to keep myself and my family occupied during the storm by preparing indoor activities. I made sure to charge all my technology equipment before the storm i. Board games, books, and writing material were my saving-grace when I was stuck in my house without electricity.
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Secure all important documents and personal items. Before the storm, I created a water-proof storage bin for my important documents. This is a great way to organize yourself and keep your information in one secure location. I created different files for all my documents such as:. I knew I would need all my insurance and identification information after the storm if it was worst case scenario.
Organize for Disaster: Prepare Your Family and Your Home for Any Natural or Unnatural Disaster
This was actually a great project to do, because now I have a brand new organizing and filing system for my important documents just in case something else is headed our way. I hope that these tips will help organize yourself, your home and your family in the case that another hurricane or natural disaster comes our way.
You might not be able to fill up if something happens suddenly. Where would you stay if you had to evacuate your home? Staying in an emergency shelter should be a last resort. They are often strained to capacity and many do not accept pets. If you have other options, it is usually best to use them. Choose destinations in different directions so you have options during an emergency. If needed, identify a place that will accept pets.
During a disaster, the Red Cross keeps a list of open emergency shelters. How will you communicate and reunite with family members if you are separated? Emergencies can happen any time, including in the middle of the day when family members are at school and work.
If you have children, talk to them about who could pick them up in an emergency.
Step 3: Organize Disaster Supplies
Designate safe meeting places where your family should go in an emergency - in your home ex. This will be the person your family members should contact if they are separated from you.
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Do you know how to shut off your utilities? Natural gas leaks and electrical sparks cause a significant number of fires following disasters. Water leaks can cause flooding and waste clean water when supplies are scarce. Every member of your family should know where the shutoff valves are for your natural gas and water lines, and should know how to flip the switches on your electric circuit box to cut electricity to the whole house. This is one of the single most important things you can do to keep your family safe. These should be kept in a place where you can access them quickly.
Here are some of the things your disaster kit should contain. Disaster Risks by Region Regions of the U. These are the most common threats in different parts of the United States. Remove all items from our yard that could blow around during the storm. Rent a storage unit to keep things like patio furniture and outdoor toys safe. Cover windows and doors from the outside using plywood or storm shutters. Know how to turn off power, and do so if flooding or downed power lines are a problem. If you have to evacuate, turn off the power to be proactive.
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Fill several containers with clean drinking water. Fill the sink and bathtub with water to be used for washing. This will protect you if the power goes out or you lose water supply during the storm. Plan for at least three days' worth of water. Set the freezer and fridge to the lowest possible temperature so your food will stay protected as long as possible if the power goes out.
Bring vehicles into the garage or under some cover during the storm. Store items in waterproof containers Build a platform to get your stored items off the ground by about six inches. Identify an evacuation route that is not near water. Practice flood evacuation if you live in a high-risk area.
Organize for disaster: prepare your family and your home for any natural or unnatural disaster
Turn off electrical power when a flood is coming. Install a sump pump with a backup power source. Raise your electrical sockets and switches a full foot above the projected flood level at your home.
Earthquake Preparedness Earthquakes typically come without warning. Practice earthquake drills so all family members know what to do. The safest thing to do in an earthquake is to drop to a hands-and-knees position, cover the head and neck under a table or desk if possible, and hold on to the item you choose for shelter. Have an evacuation plan with two ways out. Remember, in an earthquake, it's common for one route out of a space to become blocked.
Prioritize the items you will take if you must leave your home due to earthquake damage. Backpacks or other small bags are best for your disaster supplies kits so you can take them with you if you evacuate. Include at least the following items:. Electrical, water, transportation, and other vital systems can be disrupted for several days or much longer in some places after a large earthquake. Emergency response agencies and hospitals could be overwhelmed and unable to provide you with immediate assistance.
Providing first aid and having supplies will save lives, will make life more comfortable, and will help you cope after the next earthquake. In addition to your personal disaster supplies kits, store a household disaster supplies kit in an easily accessible location in a large watertight container that can be easily moved , with a supply of the following items to last at least 3 days and ideally for 2 weeks:.
If earthquakes scare us because we feel out of control, think how much more true this must be for children, who already must depend on adults for so much of their lives. It is important to spend time with children in your care before the next earthquake to explain why earthquakes occur. After the earthquake, remember that children will be under great stress.