September was National Emergency Preparedness Month: Are You Ready?
Emergencies can happen at any time. While you cannot always prevent or avoid an emergency situation, you can help your family make a plan, and know what to do to protect themselves in an emergency situation. September was National Emergency Preparedness Month, but families can prepare and practice year-round to take care of themselves and those they love during an emergency situation.
Denver injury lawyers practice preparedness with their own families, and they encourage their clients to do so as well. A good preparedness plan helps prevent injuries and ensure everyone pulls through safely.
Here are some steps you can take to prepare yourself and your family, courtesy of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):
- Create a family disaster plan. Research the types of emergencies your family is most likely to encounter, based on where you live, work, and travel. Learn what warning signals your community uses to alert people to impending emergencies. For instance, some communities rely on sirens to alert about dangerous weather or other situations, and some communities offer text messaging or automated telephone systems that people can sign up to receive alerts. Then, make a plan that accommodates every member of your family, including elderly persons, disabled persons, and pets.
- Set up two meeting places. Your family should have two places to meet up. The first should be outside your house and a safe distance away, such as at the end of a driveway. This place is used for emergencies that happen inside the home, such as a fire. The second place is outside your neighborhood, such as at a family member’s or friend’s house. This place is used for emergencies that prevent you from returning home or entering your own neighborhood. Everyone in the family should know the location, address, and phone number of both meeting places.
- Brief everyone about in-home and community emergencies. Post emergency numbers near every phone in your house or in a prominent place, such as in the kitchen, if your family has no landlines in the house. Make sure everyone in your family knows how to turn off the water, electricity, and gas lines to your home in case of an emergency. Install smoke detectors on every level of your house and in the bedrooms, and make sure family members know where the fire extinguishers are and how to use them. Finally, make sure your home and vehicles have adequate insurance coverage.
- Practice your plan. Check your smoke detectors and replace the batteries at least twice per year. Make sure your family knows how to get out of the house safely and meet up at your meeting places. If you have food and water stored in case of emergency, replace them every six months. Quiz family members at least once every six months so that everyone remembers the plan.
If you’re injured in an emergency or other situation, don’t hesitate to call the Denver injury lawyers at Levine Law to learn more about your legal rights and options.