Practice Emergency Drills at Home
Useful emergency drills are more than just practicing a fire drill. You should prepare and practice for any emergency you may face in your area. It could be a fire drill, which is perhaps the most common, but depending on where you live, you could also face the risk of hurricanes, floods or tornadoes.
An essential part of a good emergency plan is to recognize risks that may pose a danger. Everyone in your household should know what to do if a crisis occurs. A plan may include delegating responsibility to family members. With a program in place and roles clearly defined, everyone will know what to do in an emergency.
Luckily for our generation, you can easily find disaster fact sheets readily on the internet. These fact sheets will tell you what hazards you may encounter and how to prepare for each disaster. A great resource is the official website of the Department of Homeland Security, Ready.gov. This website provides access to free tool kits and fact sheets to prepare you and your family when a disaster hits.
As you create your family's emergency plan, ensure that you give specific directions to a meeting place and potential routes to take. The designated meeting place should be accessible from anywhere in the house. Each meeting place will likely vary based on the type of emergency event. For example, if you are in a tornado zone, you would want your tornado emergency meeting place in the basement or an area centrally located on the first floor with no windows. A fire, however, you would want to designate a meeting place outside of the home far away. Perhaps you are in an area where earthquakes could occur. If this is the case, your plan will vary whether you live in a big city or a rural area.
Once you have your plan in place, review it frequently by doing monthly drills with your family. To mix things up, you can practice different exercises based on seasons. The more practice and planning you put into your plan, the less chaos and confusion there will be. A good emergency plan may be the difference between making it through an emergency unscathed or injured.