Friday, March 6, 2015

March Challenge #6 Your Evacuation Plan

During a disaster, you will usually have one of two options--stay where you are (in your home) or evacuate.  Today we will talk about your evacuation plan.

When you evacuate you will need stuff.  Your BOB will be the minimum you will take with you, and, depending on your destination, you may toss as much gear into your vehicle as possible (camping gear, crates of food, jugs of water, etc).

And then you will need a destination.  Depending on the situation, you may end up evacuating:

  • to your yard.  In the event of an earthquake or other situation which makes your home unlivable, you may want to evacuate as far as your yard or barn in order to stay on your property.
  • to the neighbor's house.  Again, in a situation where your home is temporarily unlivable, you may want to go as far as next door so you can remain close to your home.
  • to a local hotel.  Depending on the problem, a local hotel may be your best option for shelter.
  • to family or friend's homes in your area.  If you have friends or family who live in your town, this may be a better option for longer term accommodations.
  • a disaster evacuation center.  Communities often put up shelters when there are a great deal of people with no where to go.  While this may be an option, it wouldn't be something I would look forward to unless there were no other options.
  • family or friend's homes far away.  If your entire area becomes unlivable, a la Hurricane Katrina, you might want to evacuate to a friend or family member's home in another state.
  • going off into the hills.  Although many people say that when TSHTF they will head for the hills, literally heading for the hills could be an option (but then again, many other people will probably have the same idea).  On another note, if you are evacuating from a tsunami, heading for the highest hill you can find should be the plan.
  • to your bug out cabin.  This would be an ideal place to evacuate to if you have the option.
  • to your RV.  Another good evacuation option is to hit the road in your RV.  You will have all the comforts of home plus be mobile.
  • to your boat.  Ditto...if you happen to have a boat and live near a waterway.
  • to another country.  In a worst case scenario situation, you may need to evacuate to another country.  Would you be prepared to do this?
Once you have your stuff and your destination set, you will also need:
  • a route and means of transport.  Depending on why you are evacuating your transport may be your feet, your bike, your vehicle, public transit, or an airline (or maybe a combination of all of these).  The situation will also dictate your route (closed roads, downed bridges, and other complications of the disaster can affect how you evacuate as well).
  • money.  Whether you need to stay at a hotel, set yourself up in another living situation, pay for airline tickets, buy gas for your vehicle, or share expenses when you temporarily move in with friends of relatives, the most important item you will need is money to do all of these things.
  • a semi-assurance of a warm welcome.  If you are planning to bug out and stay with other people, you may want to plan ahead so that everyone involved will know what to expect.
  • a way to let people know where you evacuated to (a note on your door or on the kitchen counter or a phone call/text to loved ones will take care of this).
Consider all of these things while putting together your evacuation plan.  More information on the topic can be found here, here, and here.

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