WHAT: There are many lessons we could learn from the most recent tragedy happened to the Philippines (in case you are not aware of, it’s about the Category 5 storm that hit the Philippines recently. It is when Haiyan/Yolanda/Category 5 hit the province of Leyte, Philippines).
Do you have one? If none, here some of the most important and basic lessons we should be prepared of in case of emergency:
1. Have a family disaster plan. Discuss a meeting place, escape plans, who to contact out of state/province, update family phone numbers, addresses, number of important insurance agencies, have important account numbers handy, local hospitals and other important agencies.
2. Have an inventory of your needs based on specific risk or calamity and build a kit. Store enough basic needs such as food, water, medicine and other important supplies.
3. Have your survival kit at home (and in car if possible) for the family that will keep you self-reliant for at least the first 72 hours after a disaster, it’s absolutely necessary that you have emergency supplies at your disposal that will keep you for at least 72 hours.
Here’s one of my favorite survival kits.
WHERE TO BUY: Click to be redirected to Amazon.com
The Deluxe Emergency kit contains enough emergency supplies to sustain 4 people for three days, as recommended by the American Red Cross. Each kit includes 4 water boxes, food supply, 4 emergency ponchos, 4 survival blankets, 4 12-hour lightsticks, 4 pair nitrile gloves, 4 NIOSH N-95 dust maasks,4 dust masks, pocket tissues, emergency whistle, leather gloves, Multi-Tool, 10yds. Duct Tape, 4 pair goggles, 3 bio-hazard bags, premoistened towlettes, emergency communication plan/contacts, first aid kit that has 107 pieces, Emergency power station 4-function (flashlight, AM/FM radio, siren, cell phone charger) and a backpack. The kit, in a handy backpack, can be stored at home, at school, and at the office.
4. Know where to find your important legal documents. Make digital copies of them. Save them on a USB and put it on your Survival Backpack.
5. Make sure everyone has identification IDs or tags with them, most especially the kids. At the back of your card mark “IN CASE OF EMERGENCY CONTACT: (Name/Phone Number of within state or out of state contacts). It is possible that in case of a disaster, you may lose each other.
6. Have cash on hand.
7. Have your phone ready and charged.
8. Do not hesitate to evacuate immediately or before a disaster.
9. Make sure your car’s gas tank is full.
10. Know where the utility shut-off switches are in the house.
11. Practice and review your evacuation and disaster plans at least annually.
12. Have an electronic backup plan. If your computer contains many very important information (such as documents and pictures), make sure that you have an online and offline backup plans. I wrote a separate article about online backup plans here. As we all know, whether there is a disaster or not, losing your data can be a disaster itself.
In other words: PLAN, PREPARE and PRACTICE your disaster plans.