Whether we like it or not, natural disasters are a fact of life, from the fires that ravaged Florida over the summer to the deadly Nor'easter that struck the eastern seaboard in 2011. For many, the flooding and hurricane damage that New York sustained from "Frankenstorm" Sandy in October evoked terrifying memories of NOLA in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. If it were your home at risk, would you be ready?
PrepareTake the time to prepare and plan your evacuation drill. You will be able to respond much more effectively if you are faced with the need to leave your home for a place of safety.
The 7 P’s
People, Pets, PCs, Prescriptions, Photos, Paperwork, Phone
- PEOPLE - Your top priority is always to ensure that all the people in your home get to safety. Plan with your family what you'd do in the event of an emergency. Make sure your vehicles have a full tank of gas.
- PETS - Plan for your pets too. Keep carriers and leashes handy. Consider where your pets will stay if you can't go home.
- PCs - If your personal computer is a laptop or notebook - something you'll be able to pick up and take with you easily - consider keeping a record of your household inventory on it.
- PRESCRIPTIONS - If anyone in the family needs to take prescription medication, make sure that they have a sufficient supply at hand.
- PHOTOS - By taking a photographic record of your property and everything in it you'll speed up any insurance claims. Use a photo scanning service to digitize your prints, slides, VHS tapes or other visual media; keep the digital copies on a flash drive and upload them to an online storage account.
- PAPERWORK - Birth certificates, passports, insurance policies, deeds to property etc are all examples of valuable paper documents. Try to keep your important documents in a secure but easily accessible place, such as a lockable box.
- PHONE - Keep your cellphone charged. If you have a smartphone, use this to help record your household inventory.
In light of recent events, it never hurts to be prepared - so plan ahead. Make sure that the people are safe before worrying about anything else. Make sure everyone knows what they are supposed to do if you need to evacuate.
Want to know how to select a photo scanning service? Check out our free guide!
Photo courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net