Practice each type of drill over an extended period of time. Practice for different types of emergencies. They could include: blizzard, earthquake, flooding, high winds, lightning, tornado, wildfire, hurricane, house fire, auto accident, illness, animal bites, bomb, cave-in, building collapse, electrical wires down, gas leak, nuclear incidents, power failure, dam break or other that is specific to your location.
* Make a map on graph paper of your home. Discuss the logical escape routes to use, depending on the emergency. Discuss all of the emergencies that are possible in your region.
* For families with young children, don't emphasize too many emergencies. Possibly focus on a house fire and the need to listen for the fire alarm. Then plan where your family will meet outside in order to make sure all are safe.
* Decide in advance what emergency you will simulate. Talk about escape routes and meeting places and then GO!
* Example: Earthquake. Have your family evacuate quickly with only their 72-hour kits and the clothes they are wearing. Meet at your agreed upon location somewhere a short distance away from your home. This should be announced to young children ahead of time in order to prevent undue stress and fear. Families with older children should be caught off guard to see how they would handle the emergency.
* With the potential of having a pandemic outbreak, your family should practice being quarantined in your home for an extended period of time (at least 72 hours).
* Plan in advance "to survive" for 1-3 days during this "disaster". During this drill do NOT use any of the conveniences of home like electricity, water, food, etc. Use your Emergency Kit supplies. You can decide how far you want to test your family's preparedness.
* This is a great activity to do during the summer when kids are off school, or over a weekend.
* You might pass on the opportunity of not using your toilet and let the family use the bathroom as normal however, washing hands in the sink should be a "no-no." GOOD LUCK!
* Since you should rotate your Emergency Kit Food every 6 months - take one weekend to eat all of the food from your kit - but prepare in advance with food ready for replacement.
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