Have each member
of the family pack an overnight bag in case
you have to evacuate at the last minute - or in case
your home is damaged during the storm and you have to
leave afterwards. If you ride it out safely then you
just unpack - much better than having to leave without
Stack all your bags
together in readiness to throw them in the car and go.
If they are all together you can see how big a pile it
makes (and if it will all fit in the car) and it ensures
that in the excitement of evacuation nothing is left behind.
You may even want
to pack the car ahead of the storm while the family is
calm and it isn't raining and blowing.
the children in storm preparations
scariest thing about any potential danger
is feeling helpless. Teach your children
what is happening and how to prepare so they
don't feel so helpless and frightened. Here
is an excellent website by the Federal
Emergency Management Agency with games
and information especially for the kids.
Develop an emergency
communication plan - In case family members are separated
from one another during a disaster (a real possibility
during the day when adults are at work and children are
at school), have a plan for getting back together.
Have an out-of-state
relative or friend serve as the "family contact." - After
a disaster, it's often easier to call long distance.
Make sure everyone in the family knows the name, address,
and phone number of the contact person.
Have cash on hand
- If the power goes out the ATM machines will not
be working and the banks will not be open.
First Aid - Make sure each member of your family
has any medication they need. When you know that a hurricane
is on the way, check prescriptions to make sure you have
enough to last throughout a potential emergency. Also
have a First Aid kit handy with things like:
Soap, shampoo, toothpaste, toothbrushes, deodorant, contact
lens solutions, etc. (If you are packing an evacuation
kit, pick up sample sizes of these items to save room.)
Also pack your spare eyeglasses, diapers, sanitary supplies
and a roll of toilet paper. Toilet paper doesn't seem important
until you don't have any.
Pack 2 changes of clothes - sturdy, comfortable clothes
like jeans and t-shirts and sneakers - and pajamas, socks,
If you are going to an emergency shelter there may very
well be a shortage of blankets and pillows. To save room
and to comfort a small child, encourage them to use a favorite
stuffed animal as their pillow. Sleeping bags are very
Even if you are riding
it out you may want to move the family into an inner hallway
or the bathroom for additional protection.