Read on to learn how to make your home safer, how to prepare, and what to do in case anything unexpected happens. Remember that preparation is vital to staying safe during any crisis.
Getting ready for an emergency is something everybody should do. We aren’t talking about extreme preppers who build bunkers and store food for the next 20 years, but something small that can help you stay safe during several days if any unexpected event happens. Although emergencies are quite rare, it is not good to be caught off guard, especially if you are sleeping. That is why it can’t hurt to be ready.
Natural disasters like hurricanes are frequent on the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts, while earthquakes are more common on the West Coast. Snow blizzards are most likely to happen in northern states, while fires and floods can happen anywhere.
The essential part is to educate yourself about emergencies that can happen in the area where you live. That way, you know what to prepare for exactly. Since you spend so much time resting in your bedroom, it is a place where you’ll most likely be when the emergency strikes. Read on to learn how to make your home safer, how to prepare, and what to do in case anything unexpected happens. Remember that preparation is vital to staying safe during any crisis.
Here are some things that can be useful during an emergency, before we dive in into specific types later:
There is an increasing trend of natural disasters around the globe due to climate change. Weather extremes appear to be more frequent in recent years, and it is only going to get worse if we don’t take any steps to stop the pollution and try to lessen the consequences of our actions. Natural disasters cost the US $91 billion in 2018, and as much as 80% of Americans live in an area that has recently been struck by a weather-related incident. However, only one in three people have a prepared emergency kit for those situations. It seems only logical that you should be ready in case anything happens, so here are some essentials you can include in your disaster bag, and keep it nearby just in case:
Keep all these things in a container that has handles, and that’s easy for you to carry on your own. It is best to look for something waterproof and fireproof so that your things can be safe no matter what. Put the container in an easily accessible place somewhere in your bedroom.
You should look through your emergency kit every year to see if all the things are in a working condition, and that your supplies haven’t expired. Replace anything that isn’t working or the food that’s gone bad. You can also do a practice run to see how efficient your kit is, and if you have everything you need. You can simulate power outage by turning off all lights, and see how everything performs, and if there is anything else you can include.
2. Sign up for emergency notifications
Knowing when the emergency is about to happen is essential to staying safe during it. You can download apps like FEMA or Red Cross Emergency App that are available both for Android and iOS, and turn on the alerts on your smartphone. They can tell you when there is a dangerous event approaching, and also give you some tips on how to be prepared for it.
You can always listen to the weather forecast on radio stations or TV to see if there are any pending emergencies in your area. Also make sure to educate yourself about the events that have happened there in the past, and what to do during them. Read your local Red Cross informational pamphlets, and find out where the nearest emergency center is.
3. Keep emergency information nearby
If you are discovered unconscious, you want to be identified by medical staff and first responders, and you want them to have the right information essential to further recovery steps.
You can take a piece of paper, add title “In Case of Emergency,” keep it nearby, and include the following:
If you always have your wallet nearby, you can keep this paper in it.
4. Store additional necessities in your bedroom
Your emergency kit and ICE list will be essential during an unexpected event, but there are some more things you can keep nearby to help you out. For instance, you always want to have a flashlight on your nightstand to guide your way to your kit if the power goes out.
One more important thing to have nearby are sneakers. Make sure you have an extra pair under your bed or nightstand so that you can quickly put them on when the event breaks out. Do not put them somewhere where they’ll pose a tripping hazard, as people tend to panic in these types of situations, and tripping over can drastically slow you down. You can also keep extra blankets in your bedroom, which can be useful in protecting you during an emergency, by putting these soft layers on top to prevent any potential injury. You can always use them as additional cover during winter months, or when the power and heating run out. If there are high wind conditions, you can put them on your windows for extra protection.
5. Charge your phone
Even though we usually suggest removing all the electronics from your bedroom, as they can distract you and interrupt your sleep, you might want to consider charging your phone somewhere in your bedroom. Screens emit blue light that can trick your brain into thinking that it is daytime, which makes it harder to fall asleep. But if you plug in your phone, put it on silent, and cover up the charging light, you should be okay.
That way, you will have a fully charged phone if a disaster strikes, and that can be essential. As much as 40% of people reported that having a working cellphone during an emergency significantly helped them overcome the situation. With extra portable phone batteries in your emergency kit, you should have enough days of battery life until everything resolves.
6. Make an escape route
Plan at least two escape routes from any room using doors and windows, as you never know what the situation will be like. If you live in a building, know where all the exit staircases are located, and never use an elevator during an emergency.
You can practice an escape route with your household members by having a test once a year. You should set up an outdoor safe spot when everybody meets in case of any catastrophic event. During the drill, always remember to grab your emergency kit, as it is vital for the oncoming period. Keep your car’s gas tank at least half full at all times so that you can drive away quickly if needed.
Hurricanes are a type of massive storm that starts over a body of water and then move toward land. They are accompanied by many conditions such as strong winds, heavy rain, tornadoes, and flooding. In the US, the Atlantic Coast and the Gulf of Mexico are at highest risk of experiencing hurricanes. They usually appear between May and the end of November, and here are some things you can do to prepare and stay safe during these events:
Tornadoes are rapidly spinning columns of air that are connected both with the ground and clouds in the atmosphere. They are very violent and often destroy everything in their way. Although they can happen at any place at any time, they are most common in the Midwest and the Southeast. Powerful thunderstorms accompany tornadoes, as well as extreme wind conditions. They create clouds of flying objects and debris that wreck everything on their path. Here are some things you can do to prepare for these conditions:
Although earthquakes can happen anywhere at any time, they are most frequent in Alaska, California, and Mississippi Valley. Depending on the intensity, they can cause your household items to fall, and brake, damage roads, or even make buildings collapse. Earthquakes can be followed by floods, fires, tsunamis, landslides, and avalanches. Here are some tips to prepare for these natural disasters:
Floods commonly appear after all mentioned natural disasters, but they can also be a result of heavy rainfalls. They can happen anywhere but are more common in areas near water and with long rain periods. Here is what you can do to prepare:
Wildfires are most common in areas with dry, hot climates, such as in the Western US, especially California. It appears that human actions cause 90% of these catastrophic events, and they spread so fast that you have very little time to react. Fires can also start in your home, and bedroom is the most common place for that according to National Fire Protection Association. Here are some things you can do to prevent that from happening:
12. Winter Storms
Blizzards are more common in northern areas, and they can be very dangerous. They usually last for hours or days during which there are extreme winter conditions such as strong winds and unstable snow conditions. Here are some essential tips to keep your bedroom safe during winter storms: