Step-by-Step Emergency Response Plan
Since emergencies are inevitable, it makes sense to prepare for all challenges, from sudden illness to fires and from floods to storms — or even prolonged electricity failure. If you have to evacuate your home or even if you do not, but are in a panic, it makes sense to have an emergency plan ready. What would you do if water, gas, electricity or communications were suddenly cut off? If you have limited physical mobility then this is even more essential and the plan should fit in with all your possible requirements. Basically, you need the following:
• A contact person, whether over the telephone or, if they are a neighbour, in person. And perhaps this person should also have your spare front door key. There should also be an out of town contact person in case the telephones in your area are down.
• A list of contacts — family, friends, doctors, etc. There should always be a copy by your telephone and one in your emergency supply kit.
• How you would leave your home. If you live in a retirement or assisted community, find out what procedures are in place and what your community’s response and evacuation plans are.
• Where you would go. Family? Friends? A club or hotel? It is important that people know where to find you.
For an emergency supply kit you need:
• At least a three-day supply of food (that does not need cooking), water, medicine, toiletries, sunscreen, lavatory paper, sturdy shoes and clothes — and necessities for your pet too, if you have one
• Your contact list, including doctors, specialists, regular treatments and allergies
• Spectacles, mobile ‘phone and radio
• Spare batteries
• Copies of medical treatment details and insurance cover, credit cards, identity card and, if necessary, power of attorney.
• First aid kit, whistle, tin opener, matches, knife, fork and spoon, cup and plate, blanket, plastic bags for rubbish, folding tools, map, spare keys, book, pack of cards
The above should be in one or more easily carried container with wheels and identification tags.
You should also consider whether to buy a generator, whether you need to draw up an inventory and if your insurance cover is as it should be.