With the increase of wildfires throughout California within recent years, it has been becoming more important for parents to understand the dangers that come with these fires, and how to protect themselves and their families from harm. Wildfires can and do happen anywhere at anytime, and can have a significant impact on people of all ages. However, we are more susceptible to wildfires here in California, and small children are particularly vulnerable to both physical and emotional trauma that comes along with them. Below are some tips to help prevent that trauma from impacting your own children.
4 Steps to Take to Protect Children During Wildfires
- Have an open dialog about these serious emergencies. While it is important for everyone to have these kinds of conversations, but it is even more important for those of us who live in high-risk areas. Use language that your children will understand, explaining to them what a wildfire is, how it can happen, what to do if you are caught in an emergency, and how they can prevent them. The more you talk with them before a wildfire, the better they can be prepared to remain as calm as possible in the event of one.
- Develop a home emergency plan. Depending on their age, small children might not be able to participate in developing your home emergency plan, but try to involve them as much as possible. The more they feel included, the more comfortable they will be when such an emergency strikes. If they can’t participate in the development, be sure to guide them through your home evacuation plan. In addition to your emergency plan, be sure to have an emergency supply kit that includes snacks and activities for the kids.
- Understand and share school evacuation routes and plans. Ask your child’s school administrators for a detailed evacuation plan should this emergency occur during school hours. If the school doesn’t have one, demand that one be put in place.
- Evacuate and avoid fumes. Young children can be harmed by wildfire fumes more quickly than adults. Be sure to keep them indoors and as far away from smoke for as long as possible. If you must go outside, give them a respirator to use. Evacuate as soon as possible, and don’t return home prematurely. Be sure to wait until first responders have cleared your area and deemed it safe to return.
Done-For-You Wildfire Emergency Survival Kits
Getting caught in a wildfire emergency situation can be traumatizing for people of all ages, but especially so for young children. This can cause stress on you the parent, especially if you are unprepared. Not everyone has the time to build emergency survival kits, and that is where More Prepared comes in. We have many different options for family survival kits for you to choose from. Our kits come complete with medical supplies and other crucial items, as well as food that has a 5-year shelf life. Don’t gamble with the safety of your family. Give yourself peace of mind with a family emergency survival kit today.