How to Create Your Family’s Emergency Preparedness Plan

This week’s Disaster Preparedness Tip is your first step on the road to being effectively prepared prior to any type of emergency that could arise in your region. Recent surveys show that less than half of American families have taken the steps to be properly prepared in case of the inevitable emergency that will arise. 

Defining your family’s emergency preparedness plan can get you started on the road to being adequately ready. Take this opportunity to be on the right side of these statistics!

The time to make your plan is now. It is highly possible that your family will not be together in the event of a disaster. That is why it is so important to plan for how to contact each other and how to reconnect if you are separated. Find a place for your family to meet that is familiar and easy to locate. 

There are many resources available to find valuable information to help you understand more regarding emergency preparedness plan best practices and help you define how you want your loved ones to react in a time of emergency. 

We have created a four-step process to follow as you customize an emergency preparedness plan to meet the needs of your family in your local environment. Read on to begin your journey to being prepared. 

Step 1 Of Your Emergency Preparedness Plan

Discuss the following questions with your family, friends, or household members to create an emergency preparedness plan.

  1. How do I get warnings and emergency alerts
  2. What is my shelter strategy? 
  3. What's my evacuation route  
  4. What is my family/household communication strategy? 
  5. Do I need to make an update of my emergency preparedness kit 

Step 2 Of Your Emergency Preparedness Plan

When creating your plan, make sure to tailor it to your daily life and responsibilities. Talk about your needs and responsibilities. Discuss how the network can help you with communication, pet care, business, and other specific tasks like operating medical equipment. For specific areas of assistance, create your own network. When creating your plan, keep these things in mind:

  • There are different ages within the household
  • Responsibilities in helping others
  • Localities visited
  • Needs of the diet
  • Prescriptions and equipment are all medical needs
  • Access and functional disabilities, including those with disabilities or accessibility needs.
  • Languages spoken
  • Considerations of religious and cultural significance
  • Service animals and pets
  • Families with school-age children

Step 3 Of Your Emergency Preparedness Plan

Fill out a Family Emergency Plan

Step 4 Of Your Emergency Preparedness Plan

  • Designate an out of town contact person that all family members can check in with
  • Practice what to do if your residence or meeting location has been destroyed
  • Define where your back up meeting locations are and when to go there
  • Practice communicating with each family member and all to the designated out of town contact person
  • Remember that text messages may still go through when phone lines are down
  • Hold a family meeting once a month to go over the plan and add any updated information to keep the plan current

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