Handling Emergencies

Whether you are home alone, watching younger brothers or sisters, or babysitting it is important to know how to stay safe.  Sometimes, things happen even when you are careful. Here is some guidance about what to do in unsafe situations.

What do I do if I think someone is trying to break-in to my house?

  • Call 9-1-1 if the home security alarm goes off or as soon as possible after a break-in.
  • If someone breaks in to the house, cooperate with the thief. Don’t try to fight back or get a weapon, even if you know where one is stored.

What do I do if there is a fire in my house?

  • If you see or suspect fire in the house: stay calm, stay low, and immediately go outside, taking any children with you. Once outside, call 9-1-1 (from a cell phone or neighbor’s house), and stay outside until help arrives. Don’t re-enter the building.

What do I do if the power goes out at home?

  • If the power goes out, stay calm and find a flashlight.
  • Call a back-up adult (such as a relative, a neighbor, a friend’s parent, or another adult you trust) for help.

What do I do if I smell gas or smoke in my house?

  • Go outside immediately, taking all children with you, then call 9-1-1 and stay outside until help arrives. Don’t reenter the building.
  • Never ignore a smoke or carbon monoxide alarm. Call 9-1-1 and stay outside until help arrives.

What do I do if there is a severe weather emergency?

  • If there is an earthquake, stay calm. If outside, stay in an open area away from buildings, trees, and power lines. If you are inside, take cover under a sturdy desk or table. Hold onto it and be prepared to move with it. Be prepared for additional earthquakes, called aftershocks. Stay in your area until the shaking stops.
  • If there is a tornado, stay calm and move to the basement if possible, or to an interior room without windows, such as a bathroom. Take a battery operated radio, smartphone or other electronic device with you to access weather or safety instructions.

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