The Key to Preparedness

Tips on Being Prepared for Home Emergencies

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What would you say to an opportunity to make life safer? All it requires is a little bit of common sense and planning. Our region has just come through two of the toughest hurricane seasons in many years. For many, these storm seasons caused us to evacuate further inward away from the storm.

When the Emergency Management Agency (EMA) calls for a voluntary evacuation, most of your evacuation planning should have already been completed. If you wait until EMA directs a mandatory evacuation, your plans may present many disappointments and delays. This causes you to run headlong into thousands of others, who are also trying to get away from the storm at the last minute, often struggling to find an available hotel room and working through extreme heavy volumes of traffic.

If your choice is to stay at home and shelter in place, your planning should begin before hurricane season begins, not when the evacuation order is given. Plans for food, water, lights, first aid, communication (including a battery-operated AM/FM radio) and all necessary medications are some of the items which should be included in your preparations. The key is to be proactive and plan early.

What about unforeseen medical emergencies? These misfortunes should receive your attention as you plan, especially if you live alone. Good telephone systems are a must for us today, whether at home or on the road. This gives us the ability to call 911 in all emergencies. Some persons choose to use an emergency alert device which is worn as a necklace or bracelet, giving instant communications to emergency contact persons should the need arise. However, have you ever thought if you are only able to call 911, or activate the emergency notification device, who will unlock the door? If EMT’s are called and there is no one around with a key, their only choice may be to break open a door or window.

There are other solutions, such as leaving a key under the door mat or under a flower pot. However, even burglars know to look there for a key. Leaving a key with a nearby neighbor or family member is an option, but what if they are away from home at your critical time? A better solution is a secure lock box installed to the exterior of the house, the touchpad coded to the homeowner’s code of preference. This code is then made available to the Glynn County and Camden County 911 center, so it can be discreetly shared with emergency personnel who respond to your residence and find a locked door. Make your plans now. It’s better to be safe than sorry.

Jon Holland and TC Cowan are owners of Secure A Key of the Golden Isles. With over 68 years combined service in the law enforcement community, their resources and products are invaluable. They will assist with making your home safer for at-home emergencies. Call: 912-258-6669 or 912-617-5051.

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