Creating a Communications Plan
Once you and your family have updated
your phones and completed your evacuation plans, sit down with them to discuss
the ways you can use technology to stay in
touch with each other during a disaster. For
example, if a disaster were to happen while
your family members were all in different
• How would you connect with each other?
• Would you text each other, or would call-
ing or emailing be faster?
• If you weren’t able to go home, where
would you gather?
Find out the types of communication
everyone prefers, and then create an emergency communication plan that makes
sense for your family.
Another great discussion to have with your
family, especially with school-age children,
is what they would do if they had to get
ahold of you but the cell phone system was
out, or what to do if there was an area-wide
blackout. Don’t laugh; that actually happened to us in California!
Kids are so used to technology that they
might not have the experience that they
need to do things the old-school way. The
best way to plan is to give yourself as many
ways as possible to stay connected. Then if
one or two usual methods of doing things
are unavailable, you’ll all simply turn to an
alternate method to reach each other.
What’s The Code?
Lastly, consider creating a Family Emer-
gency Code or Word. This is a code or word
that only you and your immediate family
When a family member says it, texts it, or
emails it to the rest of the family, it signals
that they’re in trouble and need help. It’s
only to be used in extreme emergency and
means that everyone needs to drop what
they’re doing and establish contact with
each other, immediately.
Making your family findable is one of
the most important things you can do, to
keep them safe and sound, no matter what
is happening around you. Taking a few
minutes now to update your smartphone
will not only put the vital information that
you need at your fingertips, but will give
you some much needed peace of mind in a
Laura Greenwald is the daughter half of
one of the only mother/daughter writing
teams in the entertainment industry. Her
blog and books Organized and Connected
have helped over 700,000 families keep their
homes, their keepsakes, and themselves safe
and sound no matter what is happening
around them . www.getyourstufftogether.com