Insurance and Finance

What to Do in Case of an Emergency

By Casey Kelly-Barton 5.15.17

You plan your dinner. You plan your outfits. You plan birthday parties and social events. You don’t plan for a disaster to strike. If a crisis occurred tomorrow, would you and your family be prepared? While it may not be as fun or exciting as planning a night out on the town or organizing a vacation — a little forethought can make emergencies more manageable. Here are some typical crisis scenarios and tips to help you and your family prepare.

You Can’t Pick up Your Children From School or Day Care

Car trouble or sudden illness can prevent you from getting to your kids before school or day care closes. A few minutes of planning now can keep your kids from being stranded.

The plan:

  • Choose emergency contacts in close proximity who can pick up your kids on short notice and watch them or take them to a trusted sitter.
  • Add their phone and personal information to your child’s school or day care paperwork to ensure authorization.
  • Stash a list of important phone numbers, addresses, and medical information in each child’s bag and educate them on the importance of the list, when to use it, and who they can give the contact information to.

An Alarm is Going off at Your House

Your home security alarm is going off and you’re across town or on a trip. Who lets the police in and turns off the alarm?

The Plan:

  • Ask a trusted neighbor or a family member who lives close by to meet the police at your house if the alarm goes off, and offer to do the same for them.
  • Give your neighbor a spare key and your alarm code. (Be sure to update it frequently!)
  • Give their information to your alarm permit office or your home security company.

There’s a Sudden Health Emergency

When you or a family member is seriously injured or ill, 911 can be a lifesaver. How will paramedics get in if you can’t answer the door, who will lock up, and who will watch your home, kids, and pets while you’re at the ER?

The Plan:

  • Talk to your trusted neighbor about locking and unlocking each other’s doors if you or your kids need emergency help at home.
  • Add emergency contacts (using the instructions for iPhones and Android devices) to your phone’s lock screen so first responders know who to call.
  • Give a list of emergency contacts to your neighbor, babysitter, and pet sitter.

There’s an Evacuation Order

Floods and wildfires can force people to move quickly to safety. Think now about how you’ll keep your family safe and in contact if you’re in separate locations when an evacuation order comes.

The Plan:

Something Else Unexpected Happens

Besides the steps above, there are other ways to prepare for whatever comes your way.

Your Plan:

If these steps seem overwhelming, prepare for one emergency at a time and add to your disaster kit as time and money allow. By making readiness a habit, you and your family will be safer and less stressed in case of an emergency.

You can plan for a safer neighborhood, too. Learn how in our article Safety in Numbers: The Benefits of a Neighborhood Watch.

© 2017 Texas Farm Bureau Insurance