You Only Have 30 Minutes What Do You Take?
Headlines February 20 2014:
Fertilizer plant fire forces Iowa town of 2,000 to evacuate.
The fertilizer used for crop dusting contains sulfuric acid. The 2,000 citizens from the town were ordered to evacuate to prevent anyone from breathing the toxic chemicals as the fire at the plant raged on (Associated Press, 2014).
It is the dead of winter early morning and some of you may have already left for work and had sent your children off to school. A toxic cloud is spreading over your small community and at this point, you really do not have any idea how deadly it may be. You have 30 minutes or even less by now to gather your family and any emergency supplies you might need. You have no idea where you will end up and for how long you may have to be gone from your home.
Residents were issued instructions to meet at the local sheriff’s office and from there they would climb onto buses to be transported to a community center in another town. At the time, the authorities had no idea how long the residents could expect to be away from their homes, all this while there was a blizzard warning issued (Rodriguez, 2014).
It Was Not a Deadly Disaster: This Time
The point is you never know and you do not have the time when you get the warnings to figure it out. All you know is there is a fire at a fertilizer plant that contains deadly chemicals. Were you ready to evacuate, did you have an emergency kit that could sustain you and your family for at least 72-hours, and if not what do you take with you when you simply do not have any information and the clock is ticking.
This is how a crisis unfolds. You are not handed a note, days in advance that a disaster is coming. Disasters strike in the early morning hours, late at night and at anytime in between.
Being prepared means you do not have to make the hard decisions. You have a kit ready. You have all of your important documents packed where they can easily be carried. You have all-important numbers already in your phone or you have them hand written and in your emergency kit. You have everything your children need for a few days, medications, food, diapers immunization records and all maintenance medications needed are where they can be placed in your kit as you head out the door. Do you have a plan for your pets?
Health insurance cards are with you as well as proof of identity because in some situations curfews could be in place and you would have to prove you lived in the community before they would let you back in.
Ask Yourself What Would You Take? The Clock is Ticking!
Associated Press. (2014, February 20). Retrieved 2014, from http://www.foxnews.com/us/2014/02/20/fertilizer-plant-fire-forces-iowa-town-2000-to-evacuate/