Preparing for Emergencies

Texas is on fire. Literally. You can actually see Texas from space. Burning. Brightly. We have many friends and family affected by the wildfires around us. I grew up on the Gulf Coast and am a hurricane veteran. Give me a hurricane over a fire anyday.

But in light of yet another natural disaster, I discussed emergency preparedness with my older children. We talked about how to get out of the house in different situations and where to go. Then, we packed a change of clothes and underwear for each of member of the family in one suitcase and put it in the front hall closet. Easy to grab on the way out.

We have a couple of scenarios we considered.

1. If the house were on fire at night, close the bedroom door, open the window and push the screen out. Make sure everyone in the room gets out but don’t go looking for anyone outside the room. Don’t take anything with you, including stuffed animals.

2. If the house were on fire during the day, grab everyone in the room and get out the closest exit. Again, don’t go looking for anyone or anything. Just get out.

My reasoning here is that I want to know the older ones are out and safe, and I will do my best to get the younger ones out. I don’t want to worry about who’s out and who’s not.

3. If we were given time to evacuate:

*Grab the suitcase with clothes.
*I have all my computer data on an external drive. Grab that and a laptop
*Grab some personal items, such as glasses, cell phones, and purses (hopefully with money).

Emergency kits also can include an extra few days of necessary medicines, passports or extra identification, cash, list of important contact numbers and insurance policies. If you have time to really pack and room in the evacuation vehicle, don’t forget some sentimental items, such as pictures, jewelry, etc. I’ve heard of someone who packs her wedding dress in evacuations. I love my wedding dress, but I’m not evacuating it. Sorry, honey. The kids come first.

What do you consider important to evacuation?

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