Preparedness blog

Preparing Your Children for an Emergency

By Jeff and Amy Davis
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Disasters often strike quickly and without warning. Though sometimes it’s impossible to predict a disaster, you can always be prepared for one. The first step to help alleviate some of that stress is to start having regular discussions with your children about what to do. Teaching your kids their role in an emergency plan will help prepare them mentally and physically. Which will make surviving significantly more manageable.

Important Discussions to Have With Your Kids
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• Step-by-step plan of what to do in an earthquake
• Step-by-step plan of what to do in a tornado
• Step-by-step plan of what to do in a fire
• Responsibilities and tasks for each family member (make sure it is clear and easy to understand)
• Practice your plan every few months

Another essential step to preparing for any type of emergency situation is to keep up-to-date 72 hour kits in an easily accessible location at all times. You should have one 72-hour kit per person who lives in the home. With children in the home, it is important to have specific items that address their needs (medication, records, clothing, etc.)

What to Include in Your Kids 72-Hour Kit

• Food & Water (Remember that these items cannot be cooked or refrigerated)
• Crackers/Cereals – for munching!
• Clothing
• Hand warmers
• Change of Clothing (short and long sleeve shirts, pants, socks, jackets, etc.)
• Undergarments
• Rain coat/poncho
• Flashlights
• Walkie Talkie
• Light Sticks
• Medication (acetaminophen, Ibuprofen, asthma inhalers, children’s medication, etc.)
• Prescription Medication (3-5 days)
• Copy of legal documents (birth certificate, passports, immunization records, etc.)
• Small, lightweight toys and games for kids (will help keep them entertained and calm)

Practice preparing Your Home for a Fire

  • Draw a detailed map indicating at least two ways out of every room
  • Agree on a location outside of the home where everyone should meet after a fire
  • Practice your escape plan at least twice a year

Practice preparing your Home for an Earthquake

  • Teach children to duck and cover under secure pieces of furniture for protection during an earthquake
  • Duck under sturdy furniture, hold onto the table or desk leg
  • Practice your escape plan at least twice a year

Practice preparing your Home for a Tornado

  • Pick a safe room in your home (preferably a basement, storm cellar or room with no windows)
  • Practice staying in the room for a few extended periods of time
  • Practice your plan at least twice a year

When teaching your children how to prepare and react to a natural disaster, make sure that they understand how important it is to follow all of your directions and that their safety depends on your guidance. The more you talk about preparing, the easier it will be for them to handle an actual emergency.

5 years ago
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