In the event of an emergency, it's important to make sure that your family’s basic needs are being met and that they are safe. The most effective way to do this is by having a plan in place, no matter what the situation is. It’s so easy to panic during an emergency but having a plan in place will help keep you calm.

  1. Emergency Kit . Creating a kit is a great place to start. Make sure you have medical supplies, medications, water, batteries, non-perishable foods and blankets.
  2. Emergency Checklist. Make sure that it is easily accessible and only has the necessary information listed. Emergency contacts, local emergency phone numbers, and a list of important items to be removed from the house (the folder that holds all the important documents). Also a great idea if you have children is to include instructions on calling 911 and what to say - describe what’s happening, being able to tell your address and phone number.
  3. Safe Places List. Indicate where the safe places are inside (and nearby) your home to go in an emergency.
  4. Fire Safety. Check your smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors monthly and change the batteries twice a year. An easy way to remember this is when "we change the clocks, we change the batteries."
  5. Bike Safety. Make sure everyone ALWAYS wears a helmet. Keep your eyes open for cars. Unfortunately today, so many people are texting while driving and may not see bike riders.
  6. Driving Safety. Just drive. Don’t text. Don’t drink and then drive. Always make sure every person is wearing a seatbelt. Those with kids and car seats, make sure they are installed properly. If you are unsure, call the local police to find out where you can have it checked.
  7. Safe Word. Create a “safe word” that only your family knows. If ever a family member is approached by a stranger, ask them the “safe word”. If the stranger doesn’t know it, get out of the situation.

Emergencies can happen anywhere. Having a plan in place is a great idea and hopefully these ideas will help you keep your family safe!

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