Need More Room In Your iPhone ICE Contacts?

Need More Room In Your ICE Contact

Need More Room In Your ICE Contacts?  

Here’s how to do it.  
Like most smartphones, your iPhone lets you change, add or create fields inside the contact, so that you can customize it as much as you like.  In general, all you need to do is touch and hold the name of the field that you want to change. 
This will bring up a menu of alternate field names to choose from, including the option to Create Your Own Field, so you can add whatever information you need.

iphone6graphic3

In fact, we suggest that people put all of the information they possibly can into their iCE Contacts.  For example:
  • Your emergency contact’s Main Number/Cell number/Work number, by adding additional phone number fields
  • Their Email Addresses & IM, Twitter and Facebook address (in case landlines are down & you need to send an emergency message through email or a direct message via social media)
  • Other info, for example, days that the contact is at a certain location
But what about information that doesn’t fit into an iPhone field?  That’s when you turn to your new best friend – the Notes section.   Notes holds quite a bit of information like your Allergies, Current Medications or the Names & Numbers of your Physicians.  So if you run out of room in the regular fields, simply put the rest of the information you need to communicate, in there.  
While you’re here, be sure to check out our other posts, How To ICE Your iPhone and  How To ICE Your Samsung Galaxy to learn everything you need to know about ICEing your phone.  And while you’re feeling proactive, don’t forget to put ICE Contacts on your spouse’s and kid’s phones too, along with each other’s contact information.   

Have Fun Getting Your Stuff Together! We’ll talk later…

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Introducing… The ICE My Phone Kit!

Buy Paperback Edition $14.99         Buy Downloadable Edition $5
More Amazing Things You Can Do In 5 Minutes Or Less
How To Set Up An ICE Contact On Your Smartphone
How To Download and Back Up Your Digital Photos
How To Fill Out Your Kid’s Emergency Contact Card

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The Book Inspired By The Blog. The Backup Plan 3.0

The Backup Plan 3.0 | Filled with Quick and easy steps you can take right now, to keep everything that’s important to you, safe, sound and accessible. rnn10.wordpress.com

The Backup Plan 3.0, is filled with quick, easy, 5 minute steps you can take right now, to get everything that’s important to you organized, safe, sound and accessible.  Each section covers a different area, from backing up and fixing family photos, home movies and music, to vital documents, medical and financial information and even getting your digital life in order.  This special Bonus Edition includes 7 downloadable Bonus Books. Paperback Edition $24.99   Buy now at Amazon.com  Downloadable PDF Edition $8.00  Buy Now       Read more about it

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No one will ever forget the footage from Superstorm Sandy of family after family searching through the wreckage of their homes for their keepsakes, only to find their most cherished possessions completely ruined. Don’t let this tragedy happen to YOUR parents. In this book you’ll learn how to help them back up their photos, videos, vinyl albums & address books, how to record and safeguard their vital information, medical history and vital documents. $12.95 Buy now at Amazon.com Read more about it

 

Raise Money & Save Lives!  Free Customized Editions of our books make a great fundraiser for your organization, companyor an extra stream of income for you.  

Your Business Continuity Plan May Be Missing Something…  Like your employees, for instance?  If your city is struck by a tornado, earthquake or other disaster, it isn’t just your company that will be affected – so will your employees.  That’s why you need to make sure they’re as prepared for an emergency as YOU are.  Don’t worry! We’ve got you covered.  Read More About It

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Can I Put An ICE Contact On A Password Protected iPhone?

 

There’s one question about ICE Contacts that we get from iPhone users all the time that’s so important, we decided to take care of it in its own blog post.  

Should I even bother putting an ICE Contact on my iPhone if I use a password to lock my phone?

Great question!  
After all, ICE contacts are great – as long as emergency personnel can actually SEE your ICE information.  But what if you lock your iPhone with a password? 
Believe it or not, in many cities emergency workers aren’t allowed to break into a password protected mobile phone, even in an emergency.  Which means that having an iCE contact on a password protected phone is useless, right?  
Wrong!
As long as you set up your iCE contact correctly, all an emergency worker has to do is ask Siri to retrieve it for them!
And THAT is why we suggest that you put nothing but the word iCE in the Name field of your iCE Contact.   Then put the contact’s name in the Company Name field instead.  If you don’t already have an ICE Contact on your iPhone, be sure to read the blog post.
Even when your iPhone is password locked, all you have to do is Press and Hold Down the Main Home Key on your phone to access Siri.  Then say to Siri, “Contacts ICE”.   Siri will then display all the information you have saved as iCE.  If you place any other words in the name field besides iCE, your phone will sort it differently and Siri won’t recognize the contact as iCE.
Remember, if someone is looking for your iCE Contact, you may be unconscious and unable to communicate medical information for yourself.   In fact, if you do tend to password lock your phone, you should definitely put vital medical information like allergies or chronic illnesses into the Notes Section of your contact as well, just in case the iCE contact is the only contact on your phone that medical personnel can access.
Take a look at the graphic below or at the video at the beginning of this post, to see what happens when you ask Siri for your iCE Contact.
And if you’re a healthcare professional, remember these instructions the next time you encounter an unconscious patient with a locked iPhone.  Press and hold down the main home key to access Siri and say “Contacts ICE”.  You never know.  That one little question might just uncover all of the information you need to save a life!
Can I Put An ICE Contact On A Password Protected iPhone? | You'll find this and other quick and easy life hacks and organization hacks at https://rnn10.wordpress.com.
Have Fun Getting Your Stuff Together! We’ll talk later…

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Introducing… Connected

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More Amazing Things You Can Do In 5 Minutes Or Less
How To Download and Back Up Your Digital Photos
How To Fill Out Your Kid’s Emergency Contact Card

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Connected | Saving Lives & Connecting Families One Smartphone @ A Time. rnn10.wordpress.com

What if I told you, there was one thing that you own and probably have with you right now, that can give you the support, information & ability you need to keep everyone and everything you love safe and sound, PLUS the power to gather your family in seconds no matter where they are. What is it? It’s your smartphone! Introducing Connected, an easy to read, easy to use guide that gives you everything you need to turn your smartphone into your very own life preserver. Purchase Connected @ Amazon.com

How To Get Ready For A Tornado

How To Get Ready For A Tornado | You'll find this and other quick and easy life hacks and organization hacks at https://rnn10.wordpress.com

Emergency personnel walk through a neighborhood severely damaged by a tornado near the Joplin Regional Medical Center in Joplin, Mo. (Mark Schiefelbein / AP / 5/22/11)

How To Get Your Stuff Together For A Tornado

The past few years have been horrible for tornadoes.
As Oklahoma, Tuscaloosa and Joplin still struggle to rebuild, this year’s tornadoes are already impacting families across the US.  The best way to deal with it is to make sure that your family has everything it needs.    In this blog post you’ll find a quick rundown of ways to get ready, links to tornado prep materials, videos and a few other great resources.  First, from our friends at ABC, here is a look at the havoc created by one night of tornadoes…
I’ll admit that in a major disaster, you only have control over a few things. For instance, you can’t suddenly pick up your house and move it to tornado-free zone and you certainly can’t stop the ground from shaking during an earthquake. But you CAN make sure the people you love, the things you love and the things you need are out of harm’s way, before a tornado strikes.
So what’s the best way to prepare for a tornado?
The worst thing about tornadoes is that  you don’t usually have plenty of warning that one is about to strike. But if you take the time to create a simple plan, you’ll know how to get the people you love and the stuff that is most important to you to a safe place, as quickly and easily as possibly. If you consider this post (and the latest tornadoes and earthquakes) your warning, you can prepare.  With preparation comes the ability to not only survive a tornado, but to thrive after the emergency has passed.
As we tell our readers (and practice ourselves), you have to keep your vital information, documents and keepsakes backed up to at least three different locations and your emergency bin packed ready to go at a moment’s notice.  That way if you suddenly have to evacuate, those things will already be taken care of.  It’s just one more thing you won’t have to worry about doing at the last minute or doing without, later.
So how do you prepare for a tornado? As we tell our readers, we always follow the Three Step Approach.
The First Step, is to make sure that you have your disaster survival gear at your fingertips and that you know how to secure your home and personal safety when a tornado strikes.  Know where your tornado shelter is — if it isn’t in your home — and the quickest and easiest routes to get there.  In fact, it might be a good idea to hold practice drills to see how quickly you and the kids can get out of the house and sheltered from the storm, with everything you need.
The Second Step, is to make sure that you have everything you need – necessities, keepsakes, vital information – in the shelter with you or waiting for you in your pre-determined evacuation location.  This is a lot easier than it sounds, if you have a storm shelter in your home. All you need is to do is to take the necessary steps now, to ensure you have access to all the items and information that will help you get back to living your normal life, as quickly and easily as possible.   You’ll also want to make sure that the things that are most vital to you — your important papers, financial and insurance information, treasured photos, videos and music and scannable keepsakes are backed up onto a portable hard drive and stored in a safe deposit box or safe, in the town where you will go during evacuation. That way it will be safe, sound and waiting for you when you arrive.
The Third Step is to make sure that you have a pre-written plan of what you’ll do and where you’ll go when a disaster strikes, including a plan for how you’ll get back to your normal life, once the disaster is over.
Because tornadoes can happen so suddenly, most families end up having to ride out the storm in their shelter, storm cellar or bathroom.  But having to shelter in place doesn’t mean that you don’t need a plan, not only to survive the storm and evacuate if necessary once it passes, but to ensure that you and your family have everything you need to get back to living, once the emergency is over.  We’ve got two other blog posts I’d like to recommend for two very specific tornado-related challenges.  One is communication.  Technology has completely revolutionized the way we ride out tornadoes.  We interviewed a reporter from Arkansas recently who spent last tornado season in her bathtub, staying safe using up to the minute storm tracker apps and disaster safety utilities on her iPad and iPhone.  If you have a lot of tornadoes in your area, you’ve GOT to read this interview.  It could literally save your life.
The second post is about a TV show — CSI: Miami to be exact.  They did an episode about a tornado last season that was not only very well done, but one of the characters lost her life because her parents failed to do one simple thing.  Find out what it was at this link.
If you live in an area of the country prone to tornadoes, you absolutely need an Evacuation Plan and a Get Back To Life Plan.  If you don’t know the evacuation routes in your area, call your local fire department for this information way before tornado season.  And while you’re at it, make sure you also ask them where the emergency shelters are in your area in case  you suddenly need one.  You always need to know where you’re going and what you and your family would do if your area becomes uninhabitable.   If necessary make a plan with other relatives or neighbors to evacuate together and share transportation and costs.
Even if the tornado doesn’t physically impact your home, your neighborhood and city might still without power or basic city services for a few days.  Telephone and/or cell service could also be down.   That means not only means you won’t have light, but you also won’t have power for computers or televisions and radios. Grocery and drug stores won’t be able to ring up purchases, ATMs won’t work, garage door openers might not function. Name any tool or convenience we rely on in this world and chances are it’s powered by electricity.
So your first defense is making sure that you always have an alternative source of power, battery powered flashlights, extra cash, a supply of canned or frozen food that doesn’t need to be cooked to be eaten, and the all-important supply of water – enough to last you and everyone in your family for three days. Since your home or neighborhood might have significant damage, keep rubber-soled shoes, a warm jacket and other emergency gear within reach of your bed or right inside your closet. Rubber soled shoes will protect your feet from the broken glass and rocks that will probably be strewn everywhere.
We aren’t going to get into the details of how to turn off your gas, when to boil water or a list of items to have on hand for a tornado, because there are literally hundreds of sources for that information.  In fact here area a few great downloadable resources that we recommend.   Tornado Guide       Tornado Checklist
You should also create or update your evacuation checklist, detailing the items that you and your family would need if you were unable to live in your home for three or more days. This includes all of your necessities, prescriptions, vital documents (or access to them on portable hard drives, online or in out of area safe deposit boxes), keepsakes, personal and professional contacts, ID and basic medical history and anything else that your family will need while evacuated.
We want you to think about something.
Talking about a tornado is one thing.  But experiencing that devastation first hand puts things in perspective.  Just read this story from LA Times reporters Nicholas Riccardi, Matt Pearce and Robin Abcarian, on the scene in Joplin, Mo. (5/23/11)
“When the tornado hit, Staci Perry, a scrub technician at St. John’s Regional Medical Center, had just left the operating room to grab a piece of equipment for a surgery in progress. An urgent announcement came over the loudspeaker: “Execute condition gray.” That was the hospital’s code for an impending disaster, though in drills, the command was always preceded by “Prepare for condition gray.”
There was no time to prepare. As she heard the massive glass walls crack, Perry, 33, dashed back to surgery. “The pressure in everyone’s ears was just tremendous,” she said. A physician’s assistant threw himself against the door so it wouldn’t blow in and destroy the operating room. The lights went out. The wind howled.
“Literally, the hospital imploded,” said Dr. Jim Riscoe, an emergency room physician at the 230-bed facility. There is an emergency plan for disasters, he said, “but they don’t anticipate the emergency being the hospital.”When it was over, just after 5:30 p.m. Sunday, the storm had gouged a six-mile swath roughly half a mile wide in this city of 50,000 people. At least 116 people died, five of them hospital patients.The apocalyptic after-images were depressingly familiar, reminiscent of those from the deadly April tornadoes in the South: rubble as far as the eye could see, cars buried under pieces of houses, trees wrenched from the ground with massive roots reaching toward the sky, columns of smoke rising from gas fires, emergency vehicles with lights flashing. And everywhere, knots of people stunned by nature’s violence mourned their losses, counted their blessings and told their harrowing stories.”
Amazing isn’t it?   So what do you think?  Is it worth a few minutes of your time to make sure your family is ready to deal with any emergency — including a tornado?
That article always reminds me of CNN’s coverage of the last spring’s tornadoes and floods.  Do you remember the faces of the people in the midst of the storm?
They looked shell-shocked, terrified, lost. Most of those people, were at least moderately prepared for a disaster.
Those in tornado country most likely had stockpiled some food and water, those in hurricane country might even have evacuated and done everything their local news and emergency authorities told them to do. And yet, after the disaster, they were standing there, scared and helpless, because their homes, the people they loved, and basically their entire lives have been destroyed to the point that their own existence was now unrecognizable. All of those people, rich and poor, young and old — they all had one thing in common. They had NO idea where to go and what to do from here.
Preparing your home for a tornado is vital, but there is really only so much you can do. For example, in any of the recent F4 or F3 tornadoes, people did a phenomenal job tornado proofing their homes.
But the one thing they could do nothing about, was the tornado itself. Based on the way the storm approached and its intensity when it touched down, there was no level of tornado preparedness that could save the homes in the path of the twister. In many neighborhoods every single home, tornado preparation or not, was gone, with nothing but a foundation left standing. And along with tornado, went the contents of those homes and businesses.
That’s why your tornado emergency plan, must include a way to instantly locate and safeguard the vital information, documents and keepsakes that you’ll need to have access to after the emergency has passed.   And once you create the plan, you can use it in any emergency – not just tornadoes.
And THAT – knowing what to do and where to go after the disaster is over, is step three.  The most important step of all.
Facing a disaster without giving yourself a plan to recover from it, is like trying to build a house with no blueprint and no tools!
Having two plans can make all the difference in getting you through those first few days and weeks after a disaster strikes.
What are the plans? They are the Backup Plan Evacuation Plan and the Get Back To Life Plan — the same plans that we’ve built into our newest book/program The Backup Plan 3.0.
The evacuation plan is pretty simple. It all comes from one question… If you were at home or at work and suddenly had to evacuate your home, or your general area, where would you go?
As you think about the locations you’ll use for your evacuation, consider, the people traveling with you, how you’ll get there (car, bus, plane), any pets traveling with you and whether those locations will actually work for you – for instance are they close to stores or services your family might need, like pharmacies, clothing, banks and doctors.
We suggest that people have three different locations in mind, to give you different types of locations and choices depending on the circumstances. As you create your plan, write everything down in detail. If you have to use this plan, you and the people you love are probably going to be in panic mode and following an easy to understand plan, will help calm and focus you.
Write down the people who will be traveling with you, and any special instructions you’ll need to gather everyone together, in case a disaster or emergency occurs while you’re all away from home. Name the location that you and your family will use to meet up with each other and the location you will be evacuating to, if you cannot live in your home, but your immediate area is still safe. Include the address of the location, contact phone, email address and directions.
Next choose a location (writing down the details, address and contact information) that your family will use if you not only need to evacuate your home, but your immediate area or city. This might happen during a moderate hurricane or a tornado. Your third location is out of state, for a serious, widely destructive emergency like the Japan or Chile Earthquake, Hurricane Katrina, the Colorado Wildfires, or other disaster that will make your entire region uninhabitable.
You will also include these locations on your emergency wallet card and your family’s wallet cards. Now, no matter what the disaster, even a fire or local emergency, you and your family will now know where and how to gather, and who will be responsible for what, so you can quickly reunite and travel on to your emergency location together. If you like, you can also give a card to the person you chose to be your out-of-area contact as well.
Will you have any pets traveling with you? Be sure to fill out the pet section, so that you will have all the information you need for them, like the name and numbers for the veterinarian, their licenses, and names/numbers of kennels in the location you are evacuating to and any prescriptions or special instructions you’ll need until you return home.
Your Get Back To Life Plan
The worst part of any disaster, short of losing a loved one, is the possibility that the home you love and care for and everything in it would be damaged beyond repair. That is what your Get Back To Life Plan is all about.
Imagine that you and your family have survived the flood, but had to leave your area because it is uninhabitable.
You’re in your evacuation location two days after the waters subside. The phone rings. It’s a good friend of yours, who has just toured your neighborhood and is calling to tell you that your home is badly damaged and he doubts that you will be able to live in it for several months, if ever again.
After you and your family hold each other for a while and talk, you finally feel strong enough to open your Ready In 10 Notebook. There you find your Get Back To Life Plan and begin making calls to your insurance agent, your contractor and your boss. You call the local real estate agent in your evacuation city and ask her to begin looking for temporary housing, register your children in the local school, and begin calling the contacts you need (that you jotted down just in case), to help you settle in. Getting settled is easier than you thought, since you have copies of all of the vital documents you need, like your birth certificates and property deeds in a safe deposit box at the local bank. It takes some time, but with hard work and a lot of courage, you and your family are back to living in a matter of weeks.
Now imagine the same scenario, the same phone call, holding your family, talking and then realizing that you have no plan and no clue how to get back to living your life. It’s CNN coverage all over again. The best part of this little scenario is that it hasn’t happened to you and that you have time right now, to make sure no matter what ever occurs in your area, you and your family will be prepared.
If you don’t have a copy of our actual Get Back To Life Plan grab one from the blog post or just  grab a piece of paper.
Take a few minutes to think about the following questions:
  • How will we handle our bank accounts, paying our monthly bills and receiving our paychecks?   How much emergency cash do we need to have, while traveling?
  • What are our credit card limits and toll free numbers for emergency increases?
  • How will we work? Will we work remotely or have to look for new positions? What people or  contacts can we call about temporary or permanent jobs?
  • How will we handle our medical, dental and prescription needs while in the new location? What doctors and dentists can we use while there?
  • How long can we stay in our evacuation location? If we need to remain evacuated longer,  where will we go/stay? Who will our real estate contacts be, if we need to find new permanent or temporary housing?
  • How are we going to secure the property or vehicles we had to leave behind?
  • How will we take care of our pets, during the evacuation and until we find new permanent housing?
  • How will we handle our transportation needs? What contacts will we need to purchase or lease vehicles?
  • How will we handle our daycare needs? How will we handle getting our children into school if necessary? What schools or contacts will we need, to enroll them in a new school in a temporary or new location?
  • How will we handle any special needs in our family?
Once you’ve answered the questions, get your family together to work out any potential problems you have uncovered and then draft your plan. And don’t forget to compile a list of real estate agents, financial contacts and jobs, schools, doctors and other professionals or information that you might need to establish yourself in the new city temporarily or permanently.
Of course those are only two parts of your Backup Plan.  Your family’s complete Backup Plan should also include:
1. Your Vital Information List: Copies of documents and a way to make them secure and accessible.
2. Your Medical Information List: Medical, allergy and prescription drug history and insurance information for each person evacuating.
3. Your ICE Contacts, Emergency Wallet Cards/ID, and optional Mobile Command Center.
4. Your Backup Plan Evacuation Plan: Who is going to be evacuating with you, where will you go, where will you stay, and how will you get there?
5. Your Evacuation Checklist:  The items, you need to take with you.
6. Your Get Back To Life Plan: What you and your family will do if you are unable to live in your home, or city for an extended amount of time.
7. Your Home Inventory
That’s why we made sure that all of those things, plus all of the information you need to keep your family, your home and ll of the things you love and treasure, safe and secure, are in our newest book The Backup Plan 3.0.  By the way, all of the plans and checklists are both downloadable  and right inside the book, where we guide you through the process in quick and easy steps.
Starting over is never easy, especially when it happens because of a disaster or other life changing emergency. But taking a few hours now to think through and draft a plan, will give you and your family the direction, information and support that you need, to get through not only the first hours and days after a disaster, but the first steps back to living the life you’ve worked so hard to build.

Have Fun Getting Your Stuff Together!    We’ll talk later…

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Buy Paperback Edition $24.99         Buy Downloadable Edition $8.00
More Amazing Things You Can Do In 5 Minutes Or Less
How To Set Up An ICE Contact On Your Smartphone
How To Create Your Family’s Evacuation Plan
How To Download and Back Up Your Digital Photos

Learn how to put an ICE Contact on every type of smartphone in just minutes with The ICE My Phone Kit! Paperback Edition $14.99   Buy now at Amazon.com  Downloadable PDF Edition $5.00 Buy Now  Read more about it

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The Book Inspired By The Blog. The Backup Plan 3.0

The Backup Plan 3.0 | Filled with Quick and easy steps you can take right now, to keep everything that’s important to you, safe, sound and accessible. rnn10.wordpress.com

The Backup Plan 3.0, is filled with quick, easy, 5 minute steps you can take right now, to get everything that’s important to you organized, safe, sound and accessible.  Each section covers a different area, from backing up and fixing family photos, home movies and music, to vital documents, medical and financial information and even getting your digital life in order.  This special Bonus Edition includes 7 downloadable Bonus Books.  Paperback Edition $24.99   Buy now at Amazon.com  Downloadable PDF Edition $8.00  Buy Now       Read more about it

How To Back Up Your Photos, Videos and Music | Filled with Quick and easy steps you can take right now, to keep your photos, videos and music, safe, sound and accessible. www.getyourstufftogether.com

I don’t know about you, but the most important keepsakes in our house are our old family photos, followed closely by our home movies and music.  The problem is, grabbing piles of photo albums and all of the picture frames off the walls is hard to do if you have to get out of the house quickly. With How To Back Up Your Photos, Videos and Music, you’ll learn quick, easy steps to back up your print/digital photos, home movies, cassettes, vinyl albums and archive them in multiple, disaster proof locations.     $12.95   Buy now at Amazon.com    Read more about it

Raise Money & Save Lives!  Free Customized Editions of our books make a great fundraiser for your organization, companyor an extra stream of income for you.  

Your Business Continuity Plan May Be Missing Something…  Like your employees, for instance?  If your city is struck by a tornado, earthquake or other disaster, it isn’t just your company that will be affected – so will your employees.  That’s why you need to make sure they’re as prepared for an emergency as YOU are.  Don’t worry! We’ve got you covered.  Read More About It

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Don’t Lose All Your Stuff In A Tornado

Don't Lose All Your Stuff In A Tornado | You'll find this and other quick and easy life hacks and organization hacks at https://rnn10.wordpress.com.

Emergency personnel walk through a neighborhood severely damaged by a tornado near the Joplin Regional Medical Center in Joplin, Mo. (Mark Schiefelbein / AP / 5/22/11)

Don’t Lose All Your Stuff In A Tornado

The past few years have been horrible for tornadoes.
As Oklahoma, Tuscaloosa and Joplin still struggle to rebuild, this year’s tornadoes are already impacting families across the US.  The best way to deal with it is to make sure that your family has everything it needs.    In this blog post you’ll find a quick rundown of ways to get ready, links to tornado prep materials, videos and a few other great resources.  First, from our friends at ABC, here is a look at the havoc created by one night of tornadoes…
I’ll admit that in a major disaster, you only have control over a few things. For instance, you can’t suddenly pick up your house and move it to tornado-free zone and you certainly can’t stop the ground from shaking during an earthquake. But you CAN make sure the people you love, the things you love and the things you need are out of harm’s way, before a tornado strikes.
So what’s the best way to prepare for a tornado?
The worst thing about tornadoes is that  you don’t usually have plenty of warning that one is about to strike. But if you take the time to create a simple plan, you’ll know how to get the people you love and the stuff that is most important to you to a safe place, as quickly and easily as possibly. If you consider this post (and the latest tornadoes and earthquakes) your warning, you can prepare.  With preparation comes the ability to not only survive a tornado, but to thrive after the emergency has passed.
As we tell our readers (and practice ourselves), you have to keep your vital information, documents and keepsakes backed up to at least three different locations and your emergency bin packed ready to go at a moment’s notice.  That way if you suddenly have to evacuate, those things will already be taken care of.  It’s just one more thing you won’t have to worry about doing at the last minute or doing without, later.
So how do you prepare for a tornado? As we tell our readers, we always follow the Three Step Approach.
The First Step, is to make sure that you have your disaster survival gear at your fingertips and that you know how to secure your home and personal safety when a tornado strikes.  Know where your tornado shelter is — if it isn’t in your home — and the quickest and easiest routes to get there.  In fact, it might be a good idea to hold practice drills to see how quickly you and the kids can get out of the house and sheltered from the storm, with everything you need.
The Second Step, is to make sure that you have everything you need – necessities, keepsakes, vital information – in the shelter with you or waiting for you in your pre-determined evacuation location.  This is a lot easier than it sounds, if you have a storm shelter in your home. All you need is to do is to take the necessary steps now, to ensure you have access to all the items and information that will help you get back to living your normal life, as quickly and easily as possible.   You’ll also want to make sure that the things that are most vital to you — your important papers, financial and insurance information, treasured photos, videos and music and scannable keepsakes are backed up onto a portable hard drive and stored in a safe deposit box or safe, in the town where you will go during evacuation. That way it will be safe, sound and waiting for you when you arrive.
The Third Step is to make sure that you have a pre-written plan of what you’ll do and where you’ll go when a disaster strikes, including a plan for how you’ll get back to your normal life, once the disaster is over.
Because tornadoes can happen so suddenly, most families end up having to ride out the storm in their shelter, storm cellar or bathroom.  But having to shelter in place doesn’t mean that you don’t need a plan, not only to survive the storm and evacuate if necessary once it passes, but to ensure that you and your family have everything you need to get back to living, once the emergency is over.  We’ve got two other blog posts I’d like to recommend for two very specific tornado-related challenges.  One is communication.  Technology has completely revolutionized the way we ride out tornadoes.  We interviewed a reporter from Arkansas recently who spent last tornado season in her bathtub, staying safe using up to the minute storm tracker apps and disaster safety utilities on her iPad and iPhone.  If you have a lot of tornadoes in your area, you’ve GOT to read this interview.  It could literally save your life.
The second post is about a TV show — CSI: Miami to be exact.  They did an episode about a tornado last season that was not only very well done, but one of the characters lost her life because her parents failed to do one simple thing.  Find out what it was at this link.
If you live in an area of the country prone to tornadoes, you absolutely need an Evacuation Plan and a Get Back To Life Plan.  If you don’t know the evacuation routes in your area, call your local fire department for this information way before tornado season.  And while you’re at it, make sure you also ask them where the emergency shelters are in your area in case  you suddenly need one.  You always need to know where you’re going and what you and your family would do if your area becomes uninhabitable.   If necessary make a plan with other relatives or neighbors to evacuate together and share transportation and costs.
Even if the tornado doesn’t physically impact your home, your neighborhood and city might still without power or basic city services for a few days.  Telephone and/or cell service could also be down.   That means not only means you won’t have light, but you also won’t have power for computers or televisions and radios. Grocery and drug stores won’t be able to ring up purchases, ATMs won’t work, garage door openers might not function. Name any tool or convenience we rely on in this world and chances are it’s powered by electricity.
So your first defense is making sure that you always have an alternative source of power, battery powered flashlights, extra cash, a supply of canned or frozen food that doesn’t need to be cooked to be eaten, and the all-important supply of water – enough to last you and everyone in your family for three days. Since your home or neighborhood might have significant damage, keep rubber-soled shoes, a warm jacket and other emergency gear within reach of your bed or right inside your closet. Rubber soled shoes will protect your feet from the broken glass and rocks that will probably be strewn everywhere.
We aren’t going to get into the details of how to turn off your gas, when to boil water or a list of items to have on hand for a tornado, because there are literally hundreds of sources for that information.  In fact here area a few great downloadable resources that we recommend.   Tornado Guide       Tornado Checklist
You should also create or update your evacuation checklist, detailing the items that you and your family would need if you were unable to live in your home for three or more days. This includes all of your necessities, prescriptions, vital documents (or access to them on portable hard drives, online or in out of area safe deposit boxes), keepsakes, personal and professional contacts, ID and basic medical history and anything else that your family will need while evacuated.
We want you to think about something.
Talking about a tornado is one thing.  But experiencing that devastation first hand puts things in perspective.  Just read this story from LA Times reporters Nicholas Riccardi, Matt Pearce and Robin Abcarian, on the scene in Joplin, Mo. (5/23/11)
“When the tornado hit, Staci Perry, a scrub technician at St. John’s Regional Medical Center, had just left the operating room to grab a piece of equipment for a surgery in progress. An urgent announcement came over the loudspeaker: “Execute condition gray.” That was the hospital’s code for an impending disaster, though in drills, the command was always preceded by “Prepare for condition gray.”
There was no time to prepare. As she heard the massive glass walls crack, Perry, 33, dashed back to surgery. “The pressure in everyone’s ears was just tremendous,” she said. A physician’s assistant threw himself against the door so it wouldn’t blow in and destroy the operating room. The lights went out. The wind howled.
“Literally, the hospital imploded,” said Dr. Jim Riscoe, an emergency room physician at the 230-bed facility. There is an emergency plan for disasters, he said, “but they don’t anticipate the emergency being the hospital.”When it was over, just after 5:30 p.m. Sunday, the storm had gouged a six-mile swath roughly half a mile wide in this city of 50,000 people. At least 116 people died, five of them hospital patients.The apocalyptic after-images were depressingly familiar, reminiscent of those from the deadly April tornadoes in the South: rubble as far as the eye could see, cars buried under pieces of houses, trees wrenched from the ground with massive roots reaching toward the sky, columns of smoke rising from gas fires, emergency vehicles with lights flashing. And everywhere, knots of people stunned by nature’s violence mourned their losses, counted their blessings and told their harrowing stories.”
Amazing isn’t it?   So what do you think?  Is it worth a few minutes of your time to make sure your family is ready to deal with any emergency — including a tornado?
That article always reminds me of CNN’s coverage of the last spring’s tornadoes and floods.  Do you remember the faces of the people in the midst of the storm?
They looked shell-shocked, terrified, lost. Most of those people, were at least moderately prepared for a disaster.
Those in tornado country most likely had stockpiled some food and water, those in hurricane country might even have evacuated and done everything their local news and emergency authorities told them to do. And yet, after the disaster, they were standing there, scared and helpless, because their homes, the people they loved, and basically their entire lives have been destroyed to the point that their own existence was now unrecognizable. All of those people, rich and poor, young and old — they all had one thing in common. They had NO idea where to go and what to do from here.
Preparing your home for a tornado is vital, but there is really only so much you can do. For example, in any of the recent F4 or F3 tornadoes, people did a phenomenal job tornado proofing their homes.
But the one thing they could do nothing about, was the tornado itself. Based on the way the storm approached and its intensity when it touched down, there was no level of tornado preparedness that could save the homes in the path of the twister. In many neighborhoods every single home, tornado preparation or not, was gone, with nothing but a foundation left standing. And along with tornado, went the contents of those homes and businesses.
That’s why your tornado emergency plan, must include a way to instantly locate and safeguard the vital information, documents and keepsakes that you’ll need to have access to after the emergency has passed.   And once you create the plan, you can use it in any emergency – not just tornadoes.

 

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And THAT – knowing what to do and where to go after the disaster is over, is step three.  The most important step of all.
Facing a disaster without giving yourself a plan to recover from it, is like trying to build a house with no blueprint and no tools!
Having two plans can make all the difference in getting you through those first few days and weeks after a disaster strikes.
What are the plans? They are the Backup Plan Evacuation Plan and the Get Back To Life Plan — the same plans that we’ve built into our newest book/program The Backup Plan 3.0.
The evacuation plan is pretty simple. It all comes from one question… If you were at home or at work and suddenly had to evacuate your home, or your general area, where would you go?
As you think about the locations you’ll use for your evacuation, consider, the people traveling with you, how you’ll get there (car, bus, plane), any pets traveling with you and whether those locations will actually work for you – for instance are they close to stores or services your family might need, like pharmacies, clothing, banks and doctors.
We suggest that people have three different locations in mind, to give you different types of locations and choices depending on the circumstances. As you create your plan, write everything down in detail. If you have to use this plan, you and the people you love are probably going to be in panic mode and following an easy to understand plan, will help calm and focus you.
Write down the people who will be traveling with you, and any special instructions you’ll need to gather everyone together, in case a disaster or emergency occurs while you’re all away from home. Name the location that you and your family will use to meet up with each other and the location you will be evacuating to, if you cannot live in your home, but your immediate area is still safe. Include the address of the location, contact phone, email address and directions.
Next choose a location (writing down the details, address and contact information) that your family will use if you not only need to evacuate your home, but your immediate area or city. This might happen during a moderate hurricane or a tornado. Your third location is out of state, for a serious, widely destructive emergency like the Japan or Chile Earthquake, Hurricane Katrina, the Colorado Wildfires, or other disaster that will make your entire region uninhabitable.
You will also include these locations on your emergency wallet card and your family’s wallet cards. Now, no matter what the disaster, even a fire or local emergency, you and your family will now know where and how to gather, and who will be responsible for what, so you can quickly reunite and travel on to your emergency location together. If you like, you can also give a card to the person you chose to be your out-of-area contact as well.
Will you have any pets traveling with you? Be sure to fill out the pet section, so that you will have all the information you need for them, like the name and numbers for the veterinarian, their licenses, and names/numbers of kennels in the location you are evacuating to and any prescriptions or special instructions you’ll need until you return home.
Your Get Back To Life Plan
The worst part of any disaster, short of losing a loved one, is the possibility that the home you love and care for and everything in it would be damaged beyond repair. That is what your Get Back To Life Plan is all about.
Imagine that you and your family have survived the flood, but had to leave your area because it is uninhabitable.
You’re in your evacuation location two days after the waters subside. The phone rings. It’s a good friend of yours, who has just toured your neighborhood and is calling to tell you that your home is badly damaged and he doubts that you will be able to live in it for several months, if ever again.
After you and your family hold each other for a while and talk, you finally feel strong enough to open your Ready In 10 Notebook. There you find your Get Back To Life Plan and begin making calls to your insurance agent, your contractor and your boss. You call the local real estate agent in your evacuation city and ask her to begin looking for temporary housing, register your children in the local school, and begin calling the contacts you need (that you jotted down just in case), to help you settle in. Getting settled is easier than you thought, since you have copies of all of the vital documents you need, like your birth certificates and property deeds in a safe deposit box at the local bank. It takes some time, but with hard work and a lot of courage, you and your family are back to living in a matter of weeks.
Now imagine the same scenario, the same phone call, holding your family, talking and then realizing that you have no plan and no clue how to get back to living your life. It’s CNN coverage all over again. The best part of this little scenario is that it hasn’t happened to you and that you have time right now, to make sure no matter what ever occurs in your area, you and your family will be prepared.
If you don’t have a copy of our actual Get Back To Life Plan grab one from the blog post or just  grab a piece of paper.
Take a few minutes to think about the following questions:
  • How will we handle our bank accounts, paying our monthly bills and receiving our paychecks?   How much emergency cash do we need to have, while traveling?
  • What are our credit card limits and toll free numbers for emergency increases?
  • How will we work? Will we work remotely or have to look for new positions? What people or  contacts can we call about temporary or permanent jobs?
  • How will we handle our medical, dental and prescription needs while in the new location? What doctors and dentists can we use while there?
  • How long can we stay in our evacuation location? If we need to remain evacuated longer,  where will we go/stay? Who will our real estate contacts be, if we need to find new permanent or temporary housing?
  • How are we going to secure the property or vehicles we had to leave behind?
  • How will we take care of our pets, during the evacuation and until we find new permanent housing?
  • How will we handle our transportation needs? What contacts will we need to purchase or lease vehicles?
  • How will we handle our daycare needs? How will we handle getting our children into school if necessary? What schools or contacts will we need, to enroll them in a new school in a temporary or new location?
  • How will we handle any special needs in our family?
Once you’ve answered the questions, get your family together to work out any potential problems you have uncovered and then draft your plan. And don’t forget to compile a list of real estate agents, financial contacts and jobs, schools, doctors and other professionals or information that you might need to establish yourself in the new city temporarily or permanently.
Of course those are only two parts of your Backup Plan.  Your family’s complete Backup Plan should also include:

1. Your Vital Information List: Copies of documents and a way to make them secure and accessible.
2. Your Medical Information List: Medical, allergy and prescription drug history and insurance information for each person evacuating.
3. Your ICE Contacts, Emergency Wallet Cards/ID, and optional Mobile Command Center.
4. Your Backup Plan Evacuation Plan: Who is going to be evacuating with you, where will you go, where will you stay, and how will you get there?
5. Your Evacuation Checklist:  The items, you need to take with you.
6. Your Get Back To Life Plan: What you and your family will do if you are unable to live in your home, or city for an extended amount of time.
7. Your Home Inventory

That’s why we made sure that all of those things, plus all of the information you need to keep your family, your home and ll of the things you love and treasure, safe and secure, are in our newest book The Backup Plan 3.0.  By the way, all of the plans and checklists are both downloadable  and right inside the book, where we guide you through the process in quick and easy steps.
Starting over is never easy, especially when it happens because of a disaster or other life changing emergency. But taking a few hours now to think through and draft a plan, will give you and your family the direction, information and support that you need, to get through not only the first hours and days after a disaster, but the first steps back to living the life you’ve worked so hard to build.

Have Fun Getting Your Stuff Together!    We’ll talk later…

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More Amazing Things You Can Do In 5 Minutes Or Less
How To Set Up An ICE Contact On Your Smartphone
How To Create Your Family’s Evacuation Plan
How To Download and Back Up Your Digital Photos

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The Backup Plan 3.0 | Filled with Quick and easy steps you can take right now, to keep everything that’s important to you, safe, sound and accessible. rnn10.wordpress.com

The Backup Plan 3.0, is filled with quick, easy, 5 minute steps you can take right now, to get everything that’s important to you organized, safe, sound and accessible.  Each section covers a different area, from backing up and fixing family photos, home movies and music, to vital documents, medical and financial information and even getting your digital life in order.  This special Bonus Edition includes 7 downloadable Bonus Books.  Paperback Edition $24.99   Buy now at Amazon.com  Downloadable PDF Edition $8.00  Buy Now       Read more about it

 

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Your Business Continuity Plan May Be Missing Something…  Like your employees, for instance?  If your city is struck by a tornado, earthquake or other disaster, it isn’t just your company that will be affected – so will your employees.  That’s why you need to make sure they’re as prepared for an emergency as YOU are.  Don’t worry! We’ve got you covered.  Read More About It

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How To Set Up An ICE Contact On Your iPhone

Did you know that your iPhone can save your life?

And it’s not just iPhones but any kind of smartphone, like the Samsung Galaxy, Droid Incredible, Windows Phone or even the iPhone 6.
The secret is letting your phone do the talking for you in an emergency.  And the way to do that, is with iCE.
What is ICE?
During Hurricane Katrina, so many people were injured, unconscious and separated from their families that emergency workers came up with the idea of putting an iCE – In Case Of Emergency – Contact in their cell phones.  Now, when a patient who is unconscious or unable to speak comes into the emergency room, hospitals worldwide check their smartphone for an iCE contact, to help them locate their next of kin.
Everyone in your family should have an iCE contact in his or her smartphone.  In fact, they should have two just in case the first contact is unavailable.  If you have our book The Backup Plan 3.0 you should already have at least one iCE contact.  But in case you don’t, grab your iPhone 4, iPhone 5, 5S, iPhone 6, 6s or any other kind of iPhone you have and let’s get started.  
And by the way, if you need instructions for your Samsung Galaxy instead, click here.
Grab Your Phone & Let’s Get Started
Before you begin, you’d better decide who your iCE Contacts will be. 
The first one of course will be your spouse, partner, best friend or close relative.  Someone that you want there with you at the hospital or, if need be, making decisions on your behalf.  But what if that person is also injured, or is out of town or forgot to charge their phone?  Why not choose one additional person to be an iCE Contact – someone very close to you, who you know will drop everything to race to your side and handle things until your significant other can be reached.
Let’s set up your first iCE Contact.
Touch the Contacts Icon on your iPhone to open up your Contacts.  Click on the plus sign + to add a new contact and touch the Name Field.  Don’t put the name of your contact in this field, only the word ICE.  
How To Set Up An ICE Contact On Your iPhone | You'll find this and other quick and easy life hacks and organization hacks at https://rnn10.wordpress.com
Now touch the Company Name Field.  Here is where you put your contact’s name and his or her relationship to you.  For example, John Jones – Husband.  That way a doctor or nurse reading it, will know that this contact is your husband. 
There’s actually an important reason that we’re setting it up this way, but we’ll get to that in a moment.
Time To Make Your iPhone Do Some Heavy Lifting…
The best thing about a smartphone is that you can put everything that you need to communicate, right inside this one contact.   Here’s the basic information you need to include:
♦  Your emergency contact’s main phone number, mobile number and work number.
♦  Email Address & IM, Twitter or Facebook address (these are vital in case you need to send that contact an emergency message or quick update).
♦  Your contact’s schedule if there are specific days that he or she is at a certain location.
♦  Be sure to include every piece of information you can.   Why?  When people are injured in a regional emergency, like a tornado or an earthquake, not every type of communication will be working.  For instance, after the Japan earthquake, many people were able to reach each other via Twitter or Facebook even though their landlines and Wi-Fi weren’t working.
Like most smartphones, your iPhone lets you change, add or create fields inside the contact, so that you can customize it as much as you like.  In general, all you need to do is touch and hold the name of the field that you want to change.  This will bring up a menu of alternate field names to choose from, including the option to Create A Field and add whatever you need.
But what about information that doesn’t fit into an iPhone field?  That’s when you turn to your new best friend – the Notes section.   Notes holds quite a bit of information, so simply put the miscellaneous information you need to communicate, in there.
What kind of information? 
A list of Allergies, the Medications you’re currently taking, Names and Phone Numbers of your Healthcare Providers and contact information for your Insurance Company.  Just make sure you don’t put any member numbers, social security numbers or financial information in your phone.   
How To Set Up An ICE Contact On Your iPhone | You'll find this and other quick and easy life hacks and organization hacks at https://rnn10.wordpress.com
What Other Types of Information Should I Put In My iCE Contact?
Whatever you want.  Let’s say that two or three lines of Current Medications and Allergies isn’t enough.  Then why not create a medical history form for yourself and every member of the family, put it in a password protected online folder, and place the link to it in the Notes section of your iCE Contact.  This way a doctor can access your, your spouse’s or your kid’s basic medical history, while you’re en route to the hospital. 
If you don’t have your own Medical History Form, go ahead and download ours.  Just right click on the link and save it to your desktop. 
And while you’re at it, you can put medical treatment release forms for your children in the folder as well, and place the links to those forms in their ICE contacts.  You can also put in links to a full list of contacts or emergency numbers, or links to your family’s evacuation plan and gathering locations, so that every member of your family always has all the information they need, right at their fingertips.
By the way, don’t forget to make emergency cards for your family too.  Download them and tuck them into their wallets with their ID, just in case their mobile phones  can’t be accessed after an accident or regional emergency. 
Let’s Make Sure No One Misses It!
Make your ICE contacts stand out by using the Add Photo function to upload a graphic like this one.  Be sure to stop by our Free Resources page for a selection of downloadable ICE Contact Graphics.
How To Set Up An ICE Contact On Your iPhone | You'll find this and other quick and easy life hacks and organization hacks at https://rnn10.wordpress.com
What About The Rest of The Family?
Every family has one person who keeps everyone else organized.  And since you’re reading this post, something tells me it’s probably you! 
If that’s the case, it’s up to you to ensure every member of your household not only has iCE Contacts set up on his or her phone, but that everyone’s phone contains all of the contact information for every other family member.  That way you’ll be able to get in touch with each other as quickly as possible in an emergency.
And don’t forget that you can always put an iCE Contact in your family’s iPods or other devices as well.  Just because you don’t have a phone with you while you’re running doesn’t mean you can’t stay safe!
What If Your Phone Is Password Locked?
I know what you’re thinking.   iCE contacts are great – as long as emergency personnel can actually see my iCE information.  But what if you lock your iPhone with a password? 
Believe it or not, in many cities emergency workers aren’t allowed to break into a password protected mobile phone, even in an emergency.   Which means that having an iCE contact on a password protected phone is useless, right?  
Wrong!
As long as you set up your iCE contact correctly, all an emergency worker has to do is ask Siri to retrieve it for them!
And THAT is why we had you put nothing but the word iCE in the Name field of your iCE Contact. 
Even when your iPhone is passcode locked, all you have to do is Press and Hold Down the Main Home Key on your phone to access Siri.  Then say to Siri, “Contacts ICE”.   Siri will then display all the information you have saved as iCE.  If you place any other words in the name field besides iCE, your phone will sort it differently and Siri won’t recognize the contact as iCE.
Remember, if someone is looking for your iCE Contact, you may be unconscious and unable to communicate medical information for yourself.   In fact, if you do tend to password lock your phone, you should definitely put vital medical information like allergies or chronic illnesses into the Notes Section of your contact as well, just in case the iCE contact is the only contact on your phone that medical personnel can access.
Take a look at the graphic below, to see what happens when you ask Siri for your iCE Contact.
And if you happen to be a healthcare professional, remember these instructions the next time you encounter an unconscious patient with a locked iPhone.  Press and hold down the main home key to access Siri and say “Contacts ICE”.  You never know.  That one little question might just uncover all of the information you need to save a life!
How To Set Up An ICE Contact On Your iPhone | You'll find this and other quick and easy life hacks and organization hacks at https://rnn10.wordpress.com
What If Siri Won’t Bring Up That Contact When Your Phone Is Password Locked?
On a few iPhones, depending on the model and operating system, Siri won’t bring up any contacts when your phone is locked.  The best time to find out if this is true for your phone, is now – before someone needs to find your iCE Contact!  All you have to do is set up your contact, lock your phone and ask Siri for the contact. 
If Siri doesn’t locate the contact, simply put your iCE Contact information on your lock screen as a graphic.  Problem solved!
No matter what though, saving an iCE contact on your iPhone just got easier.
The new iPhone 6, 6 Plus and iOS 8 updates are equipped with a Medical ID.  Be sure to read our post on putting an ICE Contact and filling out your Medical ID on your new iPhone 6.  
Do yourself a favor.  Take five minutes right now to set up your family’s iCE contacts.  That way your family will have all the information they need to stay safe and secure, no matter what the situation. 
Talk about peace of mind!
Have Fun Getting Your Stuff Together! We’ll talk later…

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Introducing… Connected

Purchase Connected @ Amazon.com

More Amazing Things You Can Do In 5 Minutes Or Less
How To Download and Back Up Your Digital Photos
How To Fill Out Your Kid’s Emergency Contact Card

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Connected | The Book Inspired By The Blog.

Connected | Saving Lives & Connecting Families One Smartphone @ A Time. rnn10.wordpress.com

What if I told you, there was one thing that you own and probably have with you right now, that can give you the support, information & ability you need to keep everyone and everything you love safe and sound, PLUS the power to gather your family in seconds no matter where they are. What is it? It’s your smartphone! Introducing Connected, an easy to read, easy to use guide that gives you everything you need to turn your smartphone into your very own life preserver. Purchase Connected @ Amazon.com

Have Fun Getting Your Stuff Together! We’ll talk later…

blogendsignature

Introducing… Connected

Purchase Connected @ Amazon.com

More Amazing Things You Can Do In 5 Minutes Or Less
How To Download and Back Up Your Digital Photos
How To Fill Out Your Kid’s Emergency Contact Card

_________________________________________________

Connected | The Book Inspired By The Blog.

Connected | Saving Lives & Connecting Families One Smartphone @ A Time. rnn10.wordpress.com

What if I told you, there was one thing that you own and probably have with you right now, that can give you the support, information & ability you need to keep everyone and everything you love safe and sound, PLUS the power to gather your family in seconds no matter where they are. What is it? It’s your smartphone! Introducing Connected, an easy to read, easy to use guide that gives you everything you need to turn your smartphone into your very own life preserver. Purchase Connected @ Amazon.com

Can Your Cell Phone Can Save Your Life?


Can Your Cell Phone Save Your Life?

Your cell phone can be a real life saver, but can it save your life?  You bet it can, and here’s how.
Can you imagine your life without that electronic appendage of yours? I’m taking about your cell phone. Hard to imagine isn’t it? If you’re like most people, it’s the main way that you connect with your family, friends and business associates. But few people viewed it as their literal lifeline. On 9/11 all that changed. As workers in and around the World Trade Center Can Your Cell Phone Can Save Your Life? | You'll find this and other quick and easy life hacks and organization hacks at https://rnn10.wordpress.com. began running for their lives, they didn’t necessarily have the time or presence of mind to grab their purses or briefcases. But many of them were smart enough to have made a habit out of always having their cell phone within reach. They grabbed the phone and were able to reach their spouses or their children as they walked down the stairs, before cell phone towers gave out from the overwhelming traffic of users dialing each other all over New York and New Jersey.
How Disaster-Ready is Your Phone?
As the workers ran down endless flights of stairs to safety, many of them learned a very important lesson.
A cell phone is only as good as its battery life and the numbers & information that are stored on it!
Let’s take those lessons one at a time. The first one is easy to prevent. Keep your phone charged. The simplest way to do that is to keep a charger stand where you store your phone every evening, and charge it while you’re watching TV or helping the kids with their homework. What? You don’t keep your phone in the same place every night? That’s another one of those habits you need to get into! What if you had to grab it to make an emergency call in the middle of the night? While you’re at it, purchase an extra phone charger for the office and charge it during the day while you’re reading email or doing routine tasks at work.
Making Your Cell Phone Speak
Lesson two:   You’ve been talking to your cell phone long enough. It’s time you make it speak for YOU – and in a way that can save your family’s lives.
During Hurricane Katrina, the Tsunami and other recent disasters, someone came up with the idea of putting an ICE entry, (short for In Case Of Emergency), on your phone, to make your emergency contacts stand out to people reading it in an emergency. The idea quickly spread around the world, and most hospitals now look for ICE entries on the cell phones of unconscious patients.
If a disaster struck right now, where you’re sitting and the only thing you could grab was your cell phone, would you have everything you need to:
  • Reach the people you love
  • Be able to communicate your vital emergency contacts
  • Be able to communicate your basic medical information if you are injured and unable to speak for yourself
  • Survive until you reach home, your loved ones or your pre-planned safe location
That’s a lot of work for one little cell phone, but with some thought and planning, it’s easier than you think to turn your smart phone into your very own emergency command center. In fact we’re going to take this one step further to give you, hospitals and emergency personnel the information necessary to save you or your family member’s life, right in your ICE contacts.

 

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For specific instructions for your type of phone, here are some of the other articles on our blog.  iPhone, Samsung Galaxy, iPod/iPad.
But in general, here are the steps you need to take to ICE your phone.
Sit down with each member of your family and decide who their two main emergency contacts are going to be. Depending on your cell phone model, you should be able to put quite a bit of information right in that one contact. The contact name of course will be ICE, but you can put the contact’s first name and relationship, (for example Cynthia – Mom) in the company name field, so a doctor reading it, would know that this contact is the patient’s mother.
Play around with the other fields until you fill in all the information you possibly can. For example:
  • Your emergency contact’s main phone number
  • Cell number
  • Work number
  • Email Address
  • IM, Twitter and Facebook address if you need to send them emergency messages or quick updates
  • A direct URL link to your emergency contact information and basic medical history (optional)
For a second contact person, type in a second entry and name it ICE2.
Now about that last item – the direct URL Link. Let’s say you (or someone you love), are unconscious and unable to give the trauma team treating you, your basic medical history. Think about this for a moment. This means that you can’t tell them what medicines you’re allergic to or what conditions you might have that could prove fatal, if they don’t treat you, or your spouse or your child, with your personal medical histories in mind.
We always suggest that our customers use our comprehensive Grab it and Go Forms, to capture each family member’s medical and vital information, insurance numbers, emergency contact numbers and other life saving information. If you don’t have those forms you can make a basic version in Word or Excel. Although you don’t want to record anything that could compromise you or your family – like social security numbers or financial information – make sure that you put down everything you would tell a trauma physician about you or your loved one if you were standing in front of them.
Once you have saved the documents (one for each member of the family) on your computer, print out a couple of copies of each. Place one set at home, in a safe but easy to grab location. Place another set in your and your spouse’s file cabinet at work.
Now store one copy of the documents in the file manager of your personal web site, or secure online file system. Put the URL to this document or file into your cell phone. This way if you are injured, the hospital will be able to grab your medical history and extended emergency contacts. If your spouse, child or even a parent is injured and you are in another location, you can easily access that document and email it to the hospital to speed emergency treatment. You might even include a treatment consent form for your children, in case a hospital needs one to begin treating your child, before you arrive.
If your phone has the capability, you can also store those documents as well as a copy of your family’s emergency plan, right in your phone, in case you ever need it while away from home. You can note the names of the documents in the ICE contact for easy retrieval.
You now have the info you and anyone treating you, would need to have to save your life, reunite your family, and not only function, but thrive after an emergency or sudden disaster.
Have Fun Getting Your Stuff Together! We’ll talk later…
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Learn how to put an ICE Contact on every type of smartphone in just minutes with The ICE My Phone Kit! Paperback Edition $14.99   Buy now at Amazon.com  Downloadable PDF Edition $5.00  Buy Now  Read more about it
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The Book Inspired By The Blog. The Backup Plan 3.0

The Backup Plan 3.0 | Filled with Quick and easy steps you can take right now, to keep everything that’s important to you, safe, sound and accessible. rnn10.wordpress.com

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