The night that Hurricane Sandy hit was one of the scariest nights I have ever experienced. And I had it easy compared to the people in southern New York State and on the south shore of New Jersey.
My husband was away on business so it was my kids and I, without power, listening to freight train winds and watching a big tree sway back and forth over the house. After trying really hard to make it a “fun” night for the kids with flashlights, board games and lots of fake smiles from me, they finally fell asleep. I stayed up most of the night watching updates on Twitter, terrified that the tree would fall on the house or that the windows would break from the winds. Just outside the air smelled and tasted like the ocean, even though we live an hour and a half from the shore.
Since that night we have heard the stories, made donations and done our part to give back to the communities that were hit the hardest. Thousands of people read posts about how to keep your family prepared in such an occurrence. Were you one of those people?
October 29th is the one year anniversary of Hurricane Sandy. How many of those tips that you read have you put into place?
After the hurricane, I swore that I would put together an emergency bag. That was a year ago, and in my closet there is an empty bag with some water and expired batteries. I also wanted to purchase wood to cover a window with if it were to break. It is still at Lowe’s.
After this past year of natural disaster after another, there are still glaring gaps in emergency preparedness by individuals, institutions and state governments.
So how about instead of waiting for the next storm to hit, we do our part now. Check out the Get Ready. Get Safe. program from SavetheChildren.org/. They have a wealth of preparedness information available, including a video at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TgTH0yYUkYM&feature=youtu.be. You can also see their emergency checklists at family and caregiver checklists at SavetheChildren.org/checklists.
You might also want to check with your children’s school or daycare provider to find out what emergency preparedness processes they have in place in case of an emergency during the school day. For example, how would the school reunify children with their parents? Who has access to the emergency contact information if the school’s computers go down?
Save the Children is calling on all Americans to urge their governors to either meet standards or make sure child-focused emergency plans are in place and practiced once required. Their Get Ready. Get Safe. preparedness initiative helps families and communities protect children at times of disaster. At http://SavetheChildren.org/Get-Ready you will find a checklist for parents and caregivers, an interactive map, and a report card by state on emergency preparedness.
As for me, I am going to check out those lists, stock up my emergency bag and purchase boards for the windows. What are you going to do?
Related posts: How to Prepare for a Hurricane