10 emergency preparedness tips to help you and your family prepare for disasters and even terrorist attacks: Internet ScamBusters #94
The #1 Publication on Internet Fraud
By Audri and Jim Lanford
Copyright © Audri and Jim Lanford
All rights reserved.
Today’s Special Issue is about emergency preparedness. It started as an
article on how you can prepare yourself and your family in the event of a terrorist
However, we realized that these emergency
preparedness tips are equally useful for natural disasters, so we broadened
our advice to include emergency preparedness more generally.
Our goal is certainly not to be alarmist. We hope you’ll never need to use this
emergency preparedness information.
However, it’s not difficult to be prepared — and since many of these steps
are useful for many situations, we thought we’d share these tips with you.
This is not an exhaustive list — it’s simply aimed at getting you thinking
in the right direction.
First, a quick update on last week’s issue: the response to the Q&A format
was overwhelmingly positive. So, we’ll occasionally use that format for future
OK. Let’s get going…
10 Emergency Preparedness Tips to Help You and Your Family Prepare for Natural
Disasters and Even Terrorist Attacks
To prepare for a natural disaster or terrorist attack requires a level head,
a calm approach — and some information.
By definition, many natural disasters and terrorist attack are unpredictable.
They occur around the world.
Nonetheless, there are lots of things average citizens can do to protect themselves
and their families — and maybe save lives should something happen.
Having some basic information and tools can go a long way toward making you
more confident in the event of a disaster in your neighborhood. Here are ten
tips to help you and your family prepare for a natural disaster or terrorist
1. TALK ABOUT IT. A ‘head in the sand’ attitude is not a good thing if you want
to successfully prepare for a natural disaster or terrorist attack.
Some natural disasters have warnings — including evacuation procedures.
Many others occur without warning.
And we know, now more than ever, that
a terrorist attack could happen anywhere, at any time — so pretending that
it only happens in the movies just won’t cut it.
You don’t need to be morbid. However, if you can talk about the possibility
of a natural disasster or terrorist attack as a family, you can brainstorm ideas
and get everyone thinking of solutions to potential problems.
Focus on the types of natural disasters
that are most likely to occur where you live. For example, if you live
in Florida, be sure to plan for hurricanes and flooding. If you’re in
California, earthquakes are more likely. However, also plan for unexpected
disasters and terrorist attacks.
2. HAVE A PLAN. Create a basic plan as a family in regard to what you will do
if a natural disaster or terrorist attack occurs. A basic plan to prepare for
terror should include:
– A communication plan
– An agreed-upon meeting place away from your home or work place
– A family member or friend who will act as a neutral contact for all of you,
in some other city
– A list of all the important phone numbers you might need for each member of
– If you have children in school, you should know what the school emergency
preparedness plan is, as well, and they should know yours.
3. PREPARE AN EMERGENCY KIT. You should have an easily accessible ‘kit’ with
emergency supplies in it. Everyone in the family needs to know where it is located.
The kit should include, at the very least:
– A battery-powered radio
– A notebook and pen
– Extra prescription medications, if possible
– A first aid kit
– Dehydrated or canned foods (and don’t forget the can opener!)
– A week’s water supply for everyone
– A flashlight, with extra batteries
– A solar blanket or two for each family member
– Duct tape, scissors, soap and bleach
4. TAKE COURSES. If your community offers any kind of emergency preparedness
courses at any time, TAKE THEM. At the very least, take a first aid course when
5. MEMORIZE EMERGENCY EXITS. In any buildings that you frequent, learn and memorize
where all the emergency exits are located. When you go into unfamiliar buildings,
make a point of noticing where the marked exits are.
Plan in advance — by mentally ‘practicing’ — how to get out of a subway or
congested public area. This is an important aspect of emergency preparedness.
6. BE AWARE OF YOUR SURROUNDINGS. To prepare for terror or a natural disaster
at any time, practice paying attention to your surroundings, and think about
where you could seek shelter or protection, or hide if you needed to, in the
event of an emergency.
This will help you become more aware of your environment wherever you go, and
this will serve you well if you need it.
7. FIRE EXTINGUISHERS. Become familiar with different kinds of fire extinguishers
and how they work. Practice using them (without pulling the pin) in a hurry.
DURING A NATURAL DISASTER OR TERRORIST ATTACK
8. NOTICE YOUR SURROUNDINGS. Should you be caught in a unexpected natural disaster
or terror attack, take immediate notice of your surroundings. BREATHE — and
don’t panic. (We know that’s easier said than done, but we also know you could
save your own life with just this one way to prepare for an emergency.)
9. PAY ATTENTION. If you are in any situation, with strangers, and something
makes you uneasy — pay attention. Start moving and leave the situation immediately
if you can safely do so.
AFTER A NATURAL DISASTER OR TERRORIST ATTACK
10. DOING WITHOUT. Be prepared to ‘do without’ amenities you are familiar with
and used to accessing. Be patient.
And here’s one more tip for you…
11. HELP WHERE YOU CAN. If your help is needed, offer it. It will take your
mind off what’s going on around you, help you feel like you’re contributing
— and you may even save a life.
We hope these emergency preparedness tips help you be prepared — and that you
never need to use them.
Finally, to end on a lighter note:
We thought you might enjoy the most visited urban legend page last week. You’ll
learn the answer to the question: Is the email about getting a $25 gift certificate
from the founder of Old Navy
true — or is it an urban legend or hoax? Visit now.
That’s it for today. Wishing you a safe, happy, and prosperous week.