Preparedness Plans

Most Important Step in Emergency Planning

The hardest and most time consuming part of emergency preparedness is creating a tailored plan that will meet your family's specific needs; however, don't overlook this step because is the most important part of your disaster planning as it becomes the guide for how your family will respond to a disaster.

Have a Plan

Check out these disaster planning tips and the easy to follow
family disaster plan outline.

Disaster Planning Tips

  1. Before you start creating your family disaster plan evaluate the possible disaster hazards for your area; click here to see disaster by area chart.

  2. Keep it simple, realistic and do-able so you don't get overwhelmed and not do anything at all.

  3. Your first priority should be creating communication plan if you and your family should get separated during a disaster.

  4. Assign tasks for each family member to do during a disaster to help them focus on something other than the situation.
  5. Prepare enough emergency supplies to last at least 3 days and increase the amount as you are able.

  6. Prepare a basic checklist and modify it for each type of disaster for your area.

  7. Don’t forget to plan for your pets; include them in your disaster preparedness plans.

  8. Be prepared to stay put or evacuate depending upon the situation. Again, being prepared for either situation is the key.
  9. Store Emergency Food Supplies in Food Grade Storage Containers and place them where they are easily accessible.
  10. Create drill sheets and conduct practice drills regularly.
  11. Place checklists of assigned tasks, supplies, emergency contact numbers and instructions for utility shut-off with your supplies.
  12. Equally as important - create a disaster recovery plan.

Family Disaster Plan Outline

Walking through the planning process will help you determine what emergency essentials you will need to survive a disaster and help you be prepared to start the disaster recovery process afterwards.

Just follow the outline provided below and you will have covered
all the major disaster preparedness topics.

I recommend starting with the Emergency Communication Plan but you can jump to the topic that interests you the most, just click of the topic heading and the link will take you to detailed instructions for that topic.

Emergency Communication Plan

  • Assign a designated Place to Meet
  • Know how to access the Community Warning System
  • Create an Emergency Contact List
  • Create individual communication cards for each member of the family


  • Know the safe locations and hazards of your home and business
  • Have access to duct tape and plastic sheeting to cover vents & windows
  • Listen to your Weather Alert radio or news for updates
  • Store extra food and have a back-up water supply
  • Have a First Aid Kit easily accessible

Evacuation Plan

  • Information about what to do when an evacuation is ordered
  • Have an envelope for all your important documents should you need to evacuate
  • 72 Hour Kits ready with emergency supplies

Special Needs

  • Babies and Young Children
  • Elderly
  • Sick and Disabled

Planning for Pets

  • List of boarding facilities and veterinarians who could shelter animals know that most shelters don’t allow pets.
  • Portable pet carrier
  • Emergency supplies for pets
  • Pet friendly hotels
  • Identification, collar, leash, and proof of vaccinations for all pets

Disaster Recovery Plan

  • How to protect your property
  • Stabilize Building and Environment
  • Retrieval and Protection
  • Damage Assessment
  • Salvage Priorities
  • Relief Agencies
  • Insurance

Preparedness plans are essential
to surviving a disaster.