Few people are prepared for an emergency. Whether it’s a car accident in Homestead or your community or a hurricane or power outage, the unexpected can strike at any time. When it does, you want to have the tools and resources you need to keep you and your family safe from harm and injury. In order to protect yourself, you will want to take a few steps before the worst happens:
1) Create a personalized plan for your family.
You can head over to the Florida Division of Emergency Management website to create a personalized plan for emergencies. Keep in mind that your plan will need to consider everyone you live with, including elderly family members, children, and pets.
2) Have a kit.
Experts recommend that your kit at home contains:
- At least one gallon of bottled water for every person in your household per day, with enough to last for 3-7 days
- Enough non-perishable and easy-to-prepare food to last everyone in your family for 3-7 days
- Special foods for infants and the elderly, if you have children or elderly family members living with you
- Cooking implements and a camp stove plus fuel
- Disposable utensils, cups, and plates
- Manual can opener
- Bed linens, including pillows and blankets
- Clothing for everyone in your family, including rain wear and sturdy shoes
- First aid kit
- Medicine and prescription drugs for everyone in your family
- Any special items your family needs (for example diapers if your household includes an infant)
- Toiletries (soap, toothpaste, toothbrushes)
- Flashlights with extra batteries
- Battery operated radio and NOAA weather radio
- Moistened wipes or baby wipes
- Enough cash to last for 3-7 days
- Games, toys, and books
- ID and important documentation (such as insurance information) in a waterproof plastic sleeve
- An extra set of keys for the house or car
- A small tool kit
- Extra gasoline in a fuel tank
- Any pet care items you need
You may want to keep these items stored in a plastic tub in your home for easy transport and access. However, if you keep fuel and gasoline as part of your emergency preparedness kit, keep it safely stored in the garage or outdoors, as it poses a fire hazard. Also, consider any other items you may need or want with you in the event of a hurricane or other damage. You may want to prepare a smaller version of this kit for your car, as well.
3) Have insurance documentation.
While your health is the most important thing in an emergency, property damage can also be traumatic and costly. Have a good insurance policy in place and purchase extra flood insurance if your home is at risk of flooding. Document anything in your home that is of value and keep records online or in a safe location. If there is damage to your home, you will find it easier to make a claim if you can prove what was damaged.
4) Consider having a safety deposit box to store important documentation.
Having documentation or a back-up in a safety deposit box or digitized on secure servers ensures that your important information is safe and easy to access if you need it.
5) Get emergency preparedness training.
First aid training can help you if you are involved in a car accident or other serious incident that requires medical intervention. Emergency preparedness training is also available, and helps you develop the skills you need to cope with a natural disaster.
6) Talk about your preparedness plan with your family.
Once you develop a disaster preparedness plan, share it with everyone in your family. If something serious happens, your family should know what they should do in order to stay safe. They should also know where the important emergency preparedness items are.
If you have been injured in an accident or due to someone’s negligence, find out whether you have a legal claim by contacting Flaxman Law Group. You risk nothing by contacting our law firm, since your first consultation with us comes with no cost and no obligation.