California Wildfires – Essential Tips on Disaster Preparedness
Margate, FL, (October 2007). As the California wildfires continue and the largest evacuation in the history of California pursues, disaster recovery planning is front and center. If you haven’t prepared a disaster recovery plan, now is the time to do so. And even for those in California it’s not too late. 30 minutes can save one from a lifetime of heartaches.
Diana Ennen, co-author of Home Office Recovery Plan: The Disaster Preparedness Guide for Your Home Business witnessed eight hurricanes in Florida including a direct hit from Hurricane Wilma. Ennen advises, "Being prepared for a hurricane or any natural disaster takes away the stress and anxiety. When timing is critical, I want to focus on the safety of my family, not on taking an inventory of my business, or deciding where I need to go. I also need to know that my family members will know how to find me after the disaster.”
Dr. Paulo J. Reyes, a First Responder in California and author of the fiction thriller Sledgehammer has firsthand disaster recovery experience and participated in various disaster relief efforts in California including the major earthquake in L.A. in 1994. He advised, "Loss of lives can be greatly reduced if everyone has a complete plan of action prior to the event. Not only with the reduction of heart attacks and stress related illnesses, but people tend to get to safety quicker if they have already planned ahead and know what they are going to do.”
Here are some steps to take to prepare:
Step One --Identify a safe place for everyone to meet. This pre-determined place should be discussed with family members prior to an emergency. A second location should be discussed. Also, out-of-town relatives should be advised of this location. Additionally, each person should have a list of phone numbers for immediate neighbors and family members. 3X5 index cards work well.
Step Two – Take an inventory now. Write down insurance policies including insurance company and contact information, policy numbers, group numbers, date of births, coverage, etc. Write down an inventory of valuables. Take photos.
Step Three -- Write down a complete family medical history. Include any medical conditions, medicines and dosages, doctors names and contact information, where medical records can be found, etc. Be specific. A life can truly depend on this one step alone.
Step Four – Get a copy of all important information, wills, trusts, mortgages, deeds, birth certificates, contracts, medical records, even household bills to help get things restored quickly, etc. Back-up your computer. Get extra cash. Often ATMs are down so cash is needed.
The time to prepare is now. Stop by our site at www.virtualwordpublishing.com for a free sample of the Home Office Recovery Plan today that has forms for all the above information. Diana Ennen is available for media interviews by contacting her at firstname.lastname@example.org or (954) 971-4025.