Prepare you family in advance for an emergency. You should have discussions with your family about the importance of emergency planning long before an emergency arises. Involve each member of your family in the planning process and give them simple tips to increase their preparedness.

  • Determine the best escape routes from your home. Find two ways out of each room.
  • Make sure everyone knows where the emergency "Go Bags" are located.
  • Install smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors on every level of your home and make sure batteries are changed at the beginning and end of Daylight Savings Time. Studies indicate that 50 percent of these safety devices are inoperable due to dead batteries.
  • Keep an ABC-type fire extinguisher on each level of your home, and make sure each member of your family knows how to use one properly. Check the fire extinguisher regularly to make sure it has not lost its charge.
  • Show each appropriate family member how and when to turn off the water, gas and electricity at the main switches.
  • Consider giving a neighbor or family member a copy of your house key in case someone needs to access your house in case of an emergency.