Remember back in elementary school when they would have us "duck and cover" under our desks for emergency weather drills?...I was never really sure how a lightweight, metal desk was to serve as shelter but...
Yesterday the weather was calling for some pretty bad storms, including 60mph winds, tornado warnings and golf-ball sized hail. Luckily, all we got were a couple of downpours of rain...but severe weather warnings can be scary.
Do you know what to do in case of a weather emergency? Do you have a plan? If not, here are a few tips so you're not stuck high-and-dry:
Make sure your cell phone is fully charged
When you hear of severe weather in the forecast, make sure you have a full battery on your phone in case of an emergency. This does not mean "charge and drain your battery playing Candy Crush". For entertainment, if you have a laptop or tablet, charge that, too. If something were to happen that's serious, you need to know that you can call the appropriate help.
Have stock in batteries and candles
You want to either have a new package of batteries or fully-charged rechargeable ones for things like flashlights, lanterns, etc. Candles are also a good idea to keep on hand. If it's dark and you lose power, you want to have reliable light sources.
"Milk, eggs, bread"
...I always thought this was fucking stupid that THESE are the things people run out to get. If you lose power due to something like a flood or major storm and it's off for a few days, how the hell do you think you're going to keep that milk and eggs cold?! LOL! I think it's best to have pre-packaged foods and fruit/veggies that do not need refrigeration. Also, bottled water is good to have. I know we don't usually have to worry about days-long power outages in Pennsylvania, but it's always good to keep these things on hand anyways.
A heating/cooling source
If it's mid-summer, you may sweat to death. In winter, you'll freeze. Make sure you have plenty of comforters and possibly a battery-powered fan. OR, if you're rich enough, get yourself a generator.
Find a good book or invest in some board games
Yeah, I know most kids these days don't remember whipping out Monolpoly anytime the lights went out, but I do! Having something to pass the time is always helpful, whether it's a coloring book, craft, game or magazine.
And most importantly, HAVE AN EVACUATION PLAN
Nate and I live in a modular home...so the base of it is like a trailer. We don't have a basement. It's an open-floor plan. Usually you're told to go into the most central room with no windows...but in some cases, you don't have that. So it's good to have a plan of action for emergency situations; be it a fire, flood, hurricane or robber.
Thankfully, the rain was it, though. When I lived in Florida for a few years, I remember my sister and I made a fort in my parent's closet during a hurricane warning in our area. We didn't get much more than heavy winds and rain, but it was definitely a scary experience for two elementary-aged kids.
Make sure to have a plan before it's too late! Especially if you live in an area that is prone to bad weather issues!