Sunday, April 7, 2013

Disaster Preparedness

This morning, the first blog I opened was Living Peacefully with Children and the article on Disaster Preparedness, specifically "Tornadoes".

photo credit

I am so happy to see people addressing calamities like this.

I have been a mother for thirty five years and a child of the sixties. The only things I remember about being prepared for a disaster was "duck and cover" in the event of a nuclear explosion in elementary school.

As a child, it left me baffled and scared. How would my Mom find me? Would we take the bus home? I remember asking my mother those questions to be met by stark horror and the response not to worry about it, it would not happen here. I didn't even know about the Cuban Missile Crisis until I read about it in college.

So, as a student of history, I did question whether it could happen here. I have to admit, I never worried about weather. Tornadoes happened on grainy television news, far, far away or on movies with flying monkeys.

When I became a mother and found we had to travel to Los Angeles frequently  the gargoyle of fear planted itself on my shoulder and I wondered if an earthquake could possibly happen while I was there. Would it dare?

So, we developed a plan. My brothers made fun of me. My parent's told me I would give the kids nightmares, but I persisted. We drew up plans in the event of any catastrophe  Earthquakes, bombing, snipers, fire, flood, hurricane, famine. My kids knew what they had to do in the event of any emergency.

Then on September 11, 2001, the unthinkable happened. We watched from our morning commute with mute shock as a plane flew into the World Trade Center. We worked in Astoria, just outside of the city, our son traveling in his own car ten minutes in front of us.

He called, calm, letting us know something horrible happened. He had first called his brother, told him not to go to school and head to the drug store to stock up on an extra supply of medicine for me. I take daily meds I can't live without. He had efficiently put into effect what we had planned and talked about for years.

A few years later, while staying in a hotel on vacation in Las Vegas, we faced a different disaster. There was some sort of explosion and a flood on the upper levels of the hotel. Instantly, my sons called, moving as planned, meeting in the stairwells to run down 35 stories to get to our cars. Even without communication, I'm proud to say they knew just what to do.

Every few months, we go over plans. Everywhere we go, whether it's a movie, mall or food store, we consider an exit plan. We discuss scenarios, who would go where. What's our central location if phones don't work? What to do if no one shows up. Our daughters-in law have now added to our protocol. I want to add that they don't think I'm crazy!

Read the original article here!

1 comment:

  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.