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Would you know what to do if you had only 10 to 15 minutes to evacuate your home? Do you know where to meet your family members? Or know where to go if you had to evacuate from your neighborhood? Your emergency plans should include plans of what to do if you have to evacuate. Evacuation plans are useful for disasters or fires or other incidents in your home.
Home Emergency Evacuation Plan
Draw your homeís floor plan. Make one drawing for each story of your home. Have at least two escape routes from each room.
Mark the locations of any escape ladders or other special equipment. Mark the locations of fire extinguishers, smoke detectors, first aid kits and disaster supply kit(s).
Mark the locations of the shutoffs for gas, electric and water.
For people with medical conditions or disabilities, mark their location, as well as the location of any special equipment they will immediately need.
Plan places where your family will meet - both within and outside of your immediate neighborhood.
Keep a half tank of gas in your vehicle(s) at all times, in case you need to evacuate.
Have maps for the following: Closest evacuation centers, Main and alternate routes for leaving the area or town in north, south, east and west directions.
Plan ahead for your pets. Keep a phone list of pet-friendly hotels and animal shelters that are along your evacuation routes. Take your pets with you during evacuation. Only service animals are permitted at evacuation reception centers.
Check with neighbors to see if they need assistance or a ride.
Family / Out-of-Area Contacts
During an emergency, local phone service may be limited, so you should arrange with someone outside your area to be your family contact.
Family members should listen to a NOAA Weather Radio or local television or radio station for current disaster/ evacuation information, then phone their out-of-area contact person to inform how and where they are and what their plans are.
Keep calls short and if possible, arrange to call the contact person back at a specified time for another check-in.
Safe and Well
Let Your Family Know Youíre Safe
Tell your loved ones about the American Red Cross Safe and Well Web site. This Internet-based tool should be integrated into your emergency communications plan. People within a disaster-affected area can register themselves as "safe and well" and concerned family and friends who know the personís phone number or address can search for messages posted by those who self-register.