Preparing for Home Emergencies

The worst time to realize you need a plan for emergencies in the home is when you are shocked from your sleep by the smoke or carbon monoxide alarm. You’re definitely not alert, and it’s suddenly time to make decisions in a potentially life-threatening situation. Not a good combination.

So backtrack a bit to the time before the fire, fumes or whatever household situation broke the peace of the home. Nobody really wants to think about being in an emergency in their inner sanctum, but prior planning and precautions can save lives if the dreaded time comes.

Take an assessment of your living area, especially the sleeping places. If there is a fire or any emergency where you and your family need to escape quickly, figure out the easiest exit route. Don’t take for granted that simply because you’ve lived there for years everyone will know what to do when they need to leave in a hurry. Remember, the stress of the emergency doesn’t lend itself to clear thinking.

Find a safe place to meet once you are outside so you can be sure everyone got out safely. Don’t get too close to the house, but not far away either — maybe a tree or other landmark in the front yard.

Some situations will necessitate the turning off of your utilities, so know where your gas, electric and water valves are and teach all adult members the proper methods to work the shut-offs. But if you turn off the gas, wait for professionals to arrive so they can turn it back on.

Your kids can get in on the planning too by showing them how to call 911 or your own local emergency numbers. Have them posted somewhere near the telephone, because fumbling through the phonebook during the heat of an emergency isn’t a good idea. And always make sure those numbers are up to date.

Once you have your emergency plan created, write it down and review it every six months to make sure it is still viable. Practice your evacuation plan also at least twice a year … even going so far as to set off the alarm in the middle of the night to see what kind of response you get from your sleeping family.

A seriously consideration emergency plan can give much peace of mind to everyone in the household. For more information on smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, call Family Danz today at .