How To Choose An Evacuation Location
The day after the Nepal Earthquake, the Joplin Tornadoes and Superstorm Sandy millions of people woke up to the reality of having to evacuate their homes and businesses. The only good thing about Sandy being a hurricane and not an earthquake, was that residents had a few days to figure out where to go and what to do, when they received the order to evacuate.
But as anyone watching even five minutes of either the earthquake, tornado or hurricane coverage quickly realized, thousands of the people who were told to evacuate, stayed right where they were. Others evacuated not because they had a plan of where to go and what to do, but because they had no other choice. They’re currently sitting in a shelter or in a friend’s spare room, with absolutely no idea what they’re going to do next.
What about you? If that was your neighborhood and your family, and the firefighter knocked on YOUR door, where would you go? Why are we asking this question?
Because you have to know where you’re going , before you can get there!
Here’s how to do it quickly and easily.
1. Choose three different locations , because that will give you and your family a variety of choices that will keep you safe, no matter what circumstances you might face.
One location should be near your neighborhood, to be used in an emergency that only impacts your home.
One location should be out of your immediate area but in the same state . This is for a regional emergency.
One location should be out of state, for situations with widespread danger, like a wildfire or an earthquake.
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2. How To Choose A Great Location
Before you zero in on the perfect location, come up with as many different locations as you can that you and your family can use for evacuation.
As you consider each location, think about:
The needs of the people traveling with you
How you’ll get there (car, bus, plane)
Any pets that will be traveling with you
3. Do Your Locations Have What You Need?
Once you’re certain you have the right places, consider whether each location will actually work for you and your family.
For instance if would need to stay in that location for two or three weeks, would it have everything that you and your family would need?
Would it be close enough to the stores or services your family might need, like pharmacies, clothing, banks and doctors?
Would you be able to get to work from that location, or are you able to work from home?
Does it have the furniture and supplies you would need to sustain you for two or three weeks?
4. We Have A Winner! Make That Three Winners
No location is perfect, so if you came up with one or two things your location would be lacking, be sure to note that on your Family Evacuation Plan, so that you can take care of it before you get there.
Speaking of your plan, once you have your locations set, grab a copy of our Family Evacuation Plan, or if you have our book Get Your Stuff Together, you’ll find a copy in the back of the book. It will take you through a couple of quick steps to help you create a complete evacuation plan for your family.
5. Making Your Plan Accessible
Print, scan or make three copies of the Evacuation Plan, and store it in at least three secure, damage-proof locations. That way if one or two of the locations are inaccessible, you’ll still be able to grab the information you need.
And store a copy in your cell phone as well, in case an emergency occurs while you’re away from home.
Want to download a copy of these instructions? Click here and save the PDF version to your computer.
Here is the link to part two of this series, How To Create Your Family Evacuation Plan.
Have Fun Getting Your Stuff Together! We’ll talk later…
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