Keeping your family safe and sound
Is your family prepared for a disaster? I know it’s not something I think about every day, how about you? The only time many of us think of preparing for a disaster is when we hear of a major storm headed our way. Is there anything we can do in advance to be prepared? Yes. There are many steps we can take to be ready for anything that comes our way.
Create a survival kit.
Prepare your kit with this in mind: “What if I have to be away from my home for a few days for even a week?” Think about the residents of Fort McMurray when they were evacuated. They had little to no time to get any of their belongings. If you have a bag of essentials that you can grab you will be ahead of whatever might be headed your way.
What should be in your bag? Think of the following:
• Canned food and manual can opener
• Several jugs of water
• Flashlight and spare batteries
• Portable radio/television
• Medications you may need
• Extra clothes and blankets
• A first-aid kit
• Emergency cash and credit cards
• Copy of home insurance and home inventory
Have a plan.
My daughter had an assignment at school where she had to draw out our evacuation plan for our home. It is something that we had never thought about so we sat down as a family and discussed what the best plan of action would be to get out safely and quickly. Some things to think about are:
• Map out an evacuation route and make sure everyone knows the different ways to get out and how to get out any windows if necessary.
• Pick a place for family members to meet. The last thing you want is for someone to go back in looking for another person, putting themselves in danger, when that person could already be out and safe. If you all know to meet in the same place, you can make sure everyone is safe. Make sure it is far enough away for you to be out of danger.
• Keep your fuel tank filled enough in case you have to drive to a safe place.
• Designate a person that everyone will call to let them know they are safe in case you are separated, i.e. major storm and can’t get home.
Build an Inventory
One of the hardest things you may have to do in the event of a claim is to try to remember what you had to tell the insurance company what needs to be replaced. If you had a fire today, would you know? Having an inventory of your belongings can help get things settled faster. How do you get started? A few tips are:
• Take pictures or videos of your rooms and all important items. For all special items, keep track of the description, where you bought it and the make, model and serial number if applicable. Some people are even taking pictures of their original receipts to keep track.
• Create an electronic file or inventory list. You can find this on our website. This will help you by listing each room and what to look for.
• Store the listing and photos in a safe place and offsite of your property, if possible.
• Consider scheduling specialty items, i.e. expensive jewellery or sports equipment, on your homeowners policy to make sure you have adequate insurance.
Peace of mind knowing that your family is safe at the time of an emergency is priceless. Take the time to talk to your family about what to do in a major storm or fire or any other disaster situation.
Also, think about your business as well. What if you were snowed in and could not get home? We had a major flood in our community and two of the three ways out of town were flooded. A scary situation. What if some of us could not get home? Are there flashlights and clean water at your business? It’s a lot to think about.
If you have any questions about your house insurance coverage, give our office a call at Pearson Insurance (506) 432-1550 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We would be happy to answer any questions you may have.