Although we all hope that nothing bad will happen with our families, there will inevitably be a time that something adverse happens. How you deal with this could change what could have been a devastating situation into one which is tolerable.
Is your family ready to deal with emergencies that may occur? Have you taught your kids what to do in case on an emergency? Do your kids know when to call 911 and when not to?
What follows are some suggestions of what you should be doing to be prepared to deal with the emergencies that may arise sometime in the life span of your family. As you will see with most of these ideas they all come under the motto of “Be Prepared.”
Have an Emergency Contact List
Although some people may disagree as to what numbers should go on this list there are some basic numbers that no one should be without.
Others may be a matter of choice. Although most, if not all, police departments in the United States have 911 as their emergency number you should make sure that this is the number in your location. Be sure to check when you are staying somewhere on vacation that this correct for that location.
Police Department – 911 (you may also want to include their non-emergency number)
Fire/Ambulance Department – 911 (non-emergency number also).
Non-Emergency Agency – 311 this number provides non-emergency information about available agencies. For example if you want to volunteer or you have another city question the will hook you up with the right organization.
Poison Control – 1-800-222-1222
Gas Company (This should be on your local gas bill). You should have this available if there is a gas leak in the house.
Electric Company (This should be on your local electric bill) If your electric goes out you will want to call them. You might also want to have their web site so you can go online and check the outage on their website.
Hospital Look up the information number of your local hospital and place it here.
Family Doctor This is great to have on hand even though you think you can find it, when an emergency occurs it is much easier to have everything you need right in front of you[JH1] .
Family Work Numbers Make sure you work numbers are listed on this list also so if an emergency comes up when one of you aren’t home you will be able to contact those at work.
School Numbers Although you may think you will never need to contact the school to get your students a message or perhaps to tell the school you will be needing to pick them up, there may be a time when this is necessary. Having the number listed makes this easier when you are under stress.
Family Friend or Relative This is in case the kids cannot get a hold of either parent, or in case the adult needs to talk to another adult for support and comfort. Don’t Underestimate the shoulder of a good friend in a crisis.
Discuss With Your Children When To Use Above Numbers
It is important that as early as possible your children know what each number is for and how to call 911. This has been taught to kids as young as two.
An Emergency Escape Plan
Talk to your kids about the possibility of there being a fire in your home. Assure them that if this were to happen there are steps to be followed that will help them all be safe. Practice an escape route practicing this route depending on where the fire may be in the house.
Set up a Meeting Place
A meeting place outside the house should be designated in case there is a fire. Everyone should be instructed to report to this place so that everyone knows that each other is out safely.
Make sure you have a working smoke detector in your home and that the kids know what it sounds like. Have them practice what they are to do when they hear this alarm. Most states they are required by law.
Carbon Monoxide Detector
These are also required by many, not all, states are essential for telling if there is an excess of the smell less gas Carbon Monoxide in your home. Again, they are required by law in some states but not others.
Regardless of whether they are a smart to have to prevent being overcome and perhaps dying from this. Again make sure your kids know what this sounds like and what they are to do when they hear it.