8 Step Communication & Evacuation Plan
In an emergency, the first resource that people WANT is a way to send and receive information. Being connected plays a vital role in our sense of safety and well being. What is Family Emergency Preparedness Plan? It’s a way to connect or locate your loved ones in an emergency. What should an emergency plan include? Below are 8 ideas to help you create an emergency communication and evacuation plan for your family. The first four steps fit onto a 8.5 x 11 page.
What Should an Emergency Plan Include?
Step 1 – Determine Emergency Meet-Up Locations. Have at least two with inside city limits. If an area gets blocked off for a chemical spill officials will let people out but won’t allow people to go into the area. If your first area gets blocked off you’ll be prepared having a backup location. It is also important to have an Emergency Meet-Up Location outside city limits. In the nonfiction book The Great Fire, families were separated as they tried to flee the city. It took many days for families to find one another. Just to be extra cautious have an Emergency Meet-Up Location outside the state.
Step 2 – Have an Emergency Contact List. The movie Home Alone 2 illustrates why this is helpful. In the movie the main character (a young boy) gets separated from his family but has his mom’s address book so eventually he looks through it to see who lives close by so he can find someone to help him. Add your Emergency Contact List to your Bug Out Bag and take it with you when you travel.
Step 3 – Have photos of your family or emergency group. If a member gets separated from you, you’ll have a photo to show people while trying to find the missing person. It also helps to prove who your family is and that you’re not stealing someone else’s child.
Step 4 – Have a map of alternative routes out of your area. In the nonfiction book The Great Fire, the main roads out of the city were so packed with people and debris that it was impossible to get a family safely through, so people just started following each other down one dead-end street after another. The survivors of the Great Fire could not find family members for days and even weeks. A simple map can help you out if you ever find yourself in a similar situation. Also carry with your map: colored duct tape & a permanent marker. That way if you, your spouse, or an older child get separated you can leave a trail of where you’ve been and where you are going. When disaster strikes, loved ones are not where you left them but it is the first place you start looking for them.
Step 5 – Create an Emergency Contact Group in the address book of your cell phone. With most cell phones you can set-up a group contact. Note: that many cell phones will not send out more than 10 messages at a time so limit your emergency group to 10 people. Phone lines and wireless networks are generally overloaded when disaster strikes. When this happens, a brief text message has the greatest chance of getting through. “A one minute phone call is 460,800% larger than a single text“.
Step 6 – Have a Battery Bank Charger in your car, mobile emergency kit, and with your home emergency supplies. Your phone’s battery will probably drain quicker than usual with the geographically-targeted emergency alerts and trying to stay connected to family. Battery Bank Chargers charge your phone or other electronic devices if the power goes out. They are fairly inexpensive with prices ranging from $8 – $40.
Step 7 – Have a secondary method to connect with others. Do you have a radio in your emergency supplies and a list of local radio stations? Do you have a secondary method, other than cell phones, to communicate with family, neighbors, and your emergency group members? Consider getting walkie talkies, a CB Radio, HAM radio with a good antenna, and/or a Satellite Phone. Walkies are a great way to communicate with your neighbors because their range is up to 2 miles in the city. You might not visit much with the neighbors now but in a crisis situation you’ll want to communicate with them more. Communication is vital to provide timely aid, protection (neighborhood watch), and security (news updates). CB Radios are commonly used among truckers and get a range of 5-25 miles. HAM radios are used by emergency personnel in a crisis. They require a license and can get expensive but the range can be over a hundred miles away. Satellite phones are expensive! With the leading brand Iridium starting around $1000 and charging over a $1 per minute. They will work even if cell towers are down and also in extreme whether.
Template Family Evacuation Plan
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