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72 Hours: Is Your Family Prepared?

If an emergency happens in your community, it may take emergency workers some time to reach you. You should be prepared to take care of yourself and your family for a minimum of 72 hours. Learn how quick and easy it is to become better prepared to face a range of emergencies – anytime, anywhere. Use this guide to create your own emergency plan. Use the checklists to build a 72-hour emergency kit. These basic steps will help you take care of yourself and your loved ones during an emergency.

•    Step 1. Know the risks

•    Step 2. Make a Plan

•    Step 3. Get an emergency kit



Step 1. Know the risks

Although the consequences of various disasters can be similar, knowing the risks in your region can help you better prepare. Across the world, we face a number of hazards, such as floods, earthquakes, blizzards and etc. In addition to natural disasters, there are other types of risks, such as power outages and industrial or transportation accidents. Some of the risks may be relevant to your community. Find out which ones? You may want to identify the most likely ones. You may also want to find out how disasters have impacted people. Learn more about disasters, including those triggered by natural hazards, technological hazards or conflict. We should also be aware that other hazards can trigger emergencies that may affect them. These emergencies could be bomb threats, chemical spills or infectious disease outbreaks.



Step 2. Make a plan

Every household needs an emergency plan. It will help you and your family know what to do in case of an emergency. It will take you about 20 minutes to make your plan. Your family may not be together when an emergency occurs. Plan how to meet or how to contact one another, and discuss what you would do in different situations. 
Use the following advice to create your plan. Most of this information can be filled out on your own. You may need to get some information from your municipality and province/territory about their emergency plans. Keep this document in an easy-to-find, easy-to-remember place (for example, with your emergency kit). Photocopy this plan and keep it in your car and/or at work, and a copy close to your phone. If you completed your plan online, keep an electronic version on your computer.



Safe idea

Learn about first aid. You could save a life; Along with making emergency plans and preparing an emergency kit, knowing fi rst aid could save a life.



Household plan

- Emergency exits

Draw up a floor plan of your home that shows all possible exits from each room. Plan a main exit route and an alternate exit route from each room. If you live in an apartment, plan to use the stairs instead of the elevators. If you are unable to use the stairs, notify emergency personnel ahead of time. Also, identify an evacuation route from your neighbourhood in case you need to leave in a hurry (and think of more than one option).

- Meeting places

Identify safe places where everyone should meet if you cannot go home or you need to evacuate.


- Safe meeting place near home: _______________________________________________________________________________________

- Safe meeting place outside immediate neighbourhood: _____________________________________________________________


- Evacuation routes from neighbourhood: _____________________________________________________________________________

Safe idea

Make copies of important documents; Make copies of birth and marriage certificates, passports, licences, wills, land deeds and insurance. Take photos of family members in case a lost persons record is created. Keep them in a safe place, both inside and outside your home. You might want to put them in a safety deposit box or give them to friends and family who live out of town.



Workplace

Learn about the emergency evacuation plans in place and what you will need to do. You may want to have some basic supplies at work, such as water and food that won't spoil, in case you need to stay put for a while. Check  with your employer about workplace emergency plans, including fire alarms, emergency exits, meeting points, and designated safety personnel or floor wardens.



Children

Ask your children's school or daycare about their emergency policies. Find out how they will contact families during an emergency. Find out what type of authorization the school or daycare requires to release your children to a designated person if you can't pick them up. Make sure the school or daycare has updated contact information for parents, caregivers and designated persons.

Designated person 1: ______________________________________                       Phone: __________________________________

Designated person 2: ______________________________________                       Phone: __________________________________

School contact information: ___________________________________________________________________________________



Plan for pets

In case of an evacuation, remember that pets are not allowed in some public shelters or hotels. In case of an evacuation, prepare to take your pets with you to the home of a relative or friend, or take steps to identify pet-friendly hotels or pet boarding facilities in your area and further away from home.

Location and contact information :________________________________________________________________________________



Special health needs

Establish a personal support network of friends, relatives, health-care providers, co-workers and neighbours who understand your special needs. Write down details about:                  1-Accommodation needs 2-Insurance information 3-Allergies 4-Medical conditions 5-Emergency contacts 6-Medication 7-Family medical history 8-Recent vaccinations 9-Health screenings 10-Surgeries.
  Keep a copy of this information in your emergency kit, and give a copy to your personal support network. Talk to your doctor about preparing a grab-and-go bag, if possible, with a two-week supply of medication and medical supplies. Include prescriptions and medical documents. Remember that pharmacies may be closed for some time, even after an emergency is over.

- Health information: _______________________________________________________________________________

- Medication and medical equipment: _________________________________________________________________

- Grab-and-go bag location: _________________________________________________________________________



Neighbourhood safety plan

Work with your neighbours to identify people who may need extra help during an emergency. To help make sure everyone is taken care of, assign “block buddies.” Write yourself a reminder to update your emergency plan one year from now. On this date next year, review your contact information, practise your emergency evacuation plans, change the batteries in your smoke alarm and carbon monoxide detector, and restock your kit(s). Change the batteries, food and water in your emergency kits once a year.



Emergency contact information

Photocopy this list. Put a copy close to your telephone. If possible, program these phone numbers into your home phone and cell phone.

- Emergency numbers

Fire, police, ambulance: Emergency (where available): __________________________            Other: __________________________

- Non-emergency numbers

Police:_________________________        Fire: _________________________             Health clinic: ____________________________

Poison control: ____________________________________        Other contact numbers: ____________________________________


- Out-of-town contact

Name: ___________________________         Home phone: _______________________          Work phone: _____________________

Cell phone: ___________________________                     E-mail: ________________________________________________________

Home address:________________________________________________________________________________________________


- Family

Name: ___________________________         Home phone: _______________________          Work phone: _____________________

Cell phone: ___________________________                     E-mail: ________________________________________________________

Home address:________________________________________________________________________________________________


- Friend/neighbour

Name: ___________________________         Home phone: _______________________          Work phone: _____________________

Cell phone: ___________________________                     E-mail: ________________________________________________________

Home address:________________________________________________________________________________________________


Arrange for each family member to call, e-mail or text the same out-of-town contact person in case of an emergency. Choose an out-of-town contact who lives far enough away that he or she is unlikely to be affected by the same event. If you are new to Country or have recently moved to a new area, make arrangements through friends, cultural associations or community organizations.

- Family doctors

Patients' names: __________________________    Doctors' names and phone numbers: ____________________________________



- Insurance agent/company

Agent'sCompany's name:________________________________________________              Phone: ___________________________

Home and Car Policy numbers: __________________________________________________________________________________

- Home security system

Company's name:________________________________________________________           Phone: __________________________



Tip; Write yourself a reminder to update your emergency plan one year from now......................... On this date next year, reviewyour contact information, practise your emergency evacuation plans, change the batteries in your smoke alarm and carbon mon oxide detector, and restock your kit(s). Change the batteries, food and water in your emergency kits once a year...........................



Safe home instructions

Make sure you have a working carbon monoxide detector, smoke alarm, fire extinguisher and well-stocked first aid kit. If you live in an apartment, or if you are staying in a hotel, know where the fire alarms and at least two emergency exits are located. Make sure you have a fire extinguisher on every level of your home, including one in your kitchen. Everyone in your home should know where to find the fire extinguishers. All capable adults and older children should know how to use it. See instructions regarding the lifetime of your fire extinguisher and check with your local fire department for more information. Older children and adults should know how to turn off your home's water, electricity and gas. Make large, easy-to-see signs for water and gas shut-offs as well as for the electrical panel. Teach children how and when to dial emergency numbers as well as how to call the designated out-of-town contact. Limit phone calls to urgent messages only. Keep calls short to free up the lines for others.

- Fire extinguisher location: __________________________________________________________________________

- Water valve location: _____________________________________    Utility company phone number:_______________

- Electrical panel location:___________________________________    Utility company phone number:_______________

- Gas valve location:__________________________________  Utility company phone number: _____________________

(Shut off gas only when authorities tell you to do so.)

- Floor drain location:_______________________________________________________________________________

(Always make sure it is clear of boxes, furniture, etc., in case of flooding.)



Tips; Arrange for each family member to call, email or text the same out-of-town contact person in case of an emergency.................................... Choose an out-of-town contact who lives far enough away that he or she is unlikely to be aff ected by the same event................................................... If you are new to area or have recently moved to a new area, make arrangements through friends, cultural associations or community organizations..............................................



Emergency instructions

Call Emergency (where available) to report a fire, a crime or to save a life. For non-emergency calls, use the ten-digit numbers listed in your local phone book, or this emergency plan, for police, fire and other health services. When notifying emergency services of your location, provide the exact street or civic address and nearest intersection. For the gas and water valves, keep shut-off instructions close by and read them carefully.



Tip; Limit phone calls to urgent messages only. Keep calls short to free up the lines for others...............................................

- In an emergency:  1- Follow your emergency plan 2-Get your emergency kit 3-Make sure you are safe before assisting others 4-Listen to the radio or television for information from authorities. Local officials may advise you to stay where you are. Follow their instructions 5-Stay put until all is safe or until you are ordered to evacuate.



- Evacuation orders

Authorities will not ask you to leave your home unless they have reason to believe that you may be in danger. If you are ordered to evacuate, take your emergency kit, your wallet, personal identification for each family member and copies of essential family documents with you. Bring a cellular phone and spare battery or charger with you, if you have one. Use travel routes specified by local authorities. If you have time, call or e-mail your out-of-town contact. Tell them where you are going and when you expect to arrive. Once you are safe, let them know. Tell them if any family members have become separated. If possible, leave a note telling others when you left and where you are. Shut off water and electricity if officials tell you to do so. Leave natural gas service on unless officials tell you to turn it off. If you turn off the gas, the gas company has to reconnect it. In a major emergency, it could take weeks for a professional to respond. Take pets with you. Lock your home. Follow instructions from authorities. If you go to an evacuation centre, register your personal information at the registration desk. Do not return home until authorities advise that it is safe to do so.



Tip; For the gas and water valves, keep shut-off instructions close by and read them carefully................................................