Be Prepared, Make a Plan

You have probably heard before, one of the first steps to being prepared is to have a plan. Preparedness plan, disaster plan, emergency plan, readiness plan — whatever you call it — the purpose of a plan is to know what you will do, where you will go, and what you will need for a disaster before it ever happens.  

But where do you start? How about the basics.

Imagine there is an emergency, like a fire in your home. You need to leave quickly. What are the best escape routes from your home? Find at least two ways out of each room. Now, write it down — you’ve just started your plan.

Your plan can grow from there to add information that may be useful in other types of emergencies like making a contact list.  Include your household phone numbers and e-mails along with school or childcare, medical, and out-of-town contacts.  Also decide on emergency meeting places.  Have an indoor meeting place, like a basement or interior room of your house, in case of severe storms or tornados.  Have an outdoor meeting place, like a big tree in your yard or your mailbox, in case of a fire or other emergency that you need to leave your home for.  Also choose a meeting place in your area, in case an emergency strikes while your family is not all at home and can't get back to your home, like a family friend's house, library, or church.

Once you have your plan make sure everyone in your household has their own copy to keep with them.  You can stop by the Borough Office to pick up Family Communication Plan Cards, which are compact and fit nicely in a purse or wallet.  This is something that will only take a few minutes to do, but can make a world of difference when you are in the middle of an emergency!