Make A Plan
Don't think it won't happen to you
It can and will happen to you!
Overall, 91% of Americans say they’ve experienced a natural disaster. Of the 91% of Americans living in an area with increased risk, nearly all (92%) have been negatively impacted by natural disasters. Power outages (79%) are the most common impact, but among those who’ve been impacted financially:
26% have experienced damage to their place of residence
19% have lost income
19% have experienced damage to their vehicles
17% have been evacuated
Make A Plan
Plan today. Your family may not be together if a disaster strikes. Know how you’ll contact one another and reconnect if separated. Establish a family meeting place that’s familiar and easy to find.
Consider your unique needs.
Where you live, and the specific needs of your family members are major factors to consider in your home emergency plan. Know what natural disasters could occur in your area and how best to prepare for emergencies like hurricanes, severe flooding, volcanoes, or tornadoes.
In addition, determine if you need to make special accommodations for certain family members, such as senior citizens, family members with disabilities, infants, and young children. You should also consider the medical and dietary needs of all members of your household.
Make a disaster supplies kit.
A disaster supplies kit is a great way to have everything you need in one place to evacuate quickly. Ideally, your kit should fit in one or two easy-to-carry bags and contain items to help you survive for at least 72 hours. (Build A Kit | Ready.gov)
Know where to go.
Every emergency is different, so your safe space will vary by situation. First, find safe places in your home for every situation where you would need to take shelter, like an earthquake or tornado. Second, find a meeting spot right outside your home in case of a fire or other sudden emergency. Third, determine where you would go if you were asked to evacuate or could not return home, and plan the route you would take to get there. (Evacuation | Ready.gov)
Create a family communication plan. The plan should include information on how you will receive local emergency alerts (radio, TV, text, etc.) and how to contact each other.
Make sure all family members have emergency phone numbers saved in their cell phones and written down. Include numbers for each family member, the police station, a nearby hospital, and an out-of-area emergency contact. Keep a written list in your car, home, backpack, purse, etc.
It may be easier to reach someone out of town if an emergency affects your neighborhood, so designate an out-of-area contact. Instruct all family members to keep in touch with this emergency contact to inform them they are safe. (Make a Plan Form | Ready.gov)
Protect your pets.
When planning for an emergency, don’t forget about your pets! Remember to include items for your pet in your disaster kit. (Prepare Your Pets for Disasters | Ready.gov)
Write it down and practice.
Make sure you get your emergency plan down on paper with detailed instructions for each situation. How you react to a tornado will be very different than how you react to an evacuation, so you must have a plan for each one.