You never expect to be huddled outside with your family at 2 a.m. staring at what was your home and watching emergency lights flash over the faces in the crowd around you. Accepting your neighbor’s offer you tuck your children to sleep in the living room; the adults stay awake, drinking coffee and talking about what happened and your plans for getting your life back in order.
You take care of the immediate things; calling work, your insurance company, the school, and friends and family. When those calls are finished the questions start. Where are we going to live? How are we going to get clothes? How do we get the cash we need right away? Can our pets stay with us?
You planned for surviving regional disasters like storms and earthquakes. You know where the shelters are and all the routes to get there. You stored food and water and medical supplies. But now, those plans don’t apply to what has happened to your family.
Atascadero mold and fire damage restoration company Central Coast Casualty Restoration knows it is important to get life back on track as quickly as possible. A plan for moving forward after a personal disaster is the first step. Collecting important information beforehand speeds your recovery and reduces anxiety.
1. What support services does your insurance provide? Emergency lodging, meals, and clothing? Rent for a temporary home? Does it cover kenneling for your pets? How quickly can you get into emergency housing? This is important for renters, too. There is no guarantee that your landlord’s insurance covers your losses.
2. Do your financial institutions allow you emergency access to your money? How do you get cash if your identification, bankcards, checks, and account information are all lost?
3. Emergency contacts. In this day of cell phones, speed dialing and Internet connections, do you remember important phone numbers or addresses? Who notifies the power, telephone and cable companies? What is your insurance company’s phone number? Who needs to hear that you are safe?
4. What local resources are available? Call your place of worship, Salvation Army, Red Cross, and public human services. Ask them about services available to families after a personal disaster. Check with your veterinarian, local kennels, and animal shelter for temporary kenneling for your pets. Find out if your children’s school has free meal programs.
5. Emotional support. Communities rally around in the aftermath of a tragedy, but what about a month or three months later? Where do you go for help relieve the worry? Does your medical insurance cover this? Can your spiritual community help? Does the school provide counseling for your children? Which local nonprofit organizations or public human services are available?
Central Coast Casualty Restoration wants your family to be safe and your life restored. We hope you never need this checklist, but if so, we hope that the information you collected brings you comfort during your recovery. Knowledge is power.
Call the Atascadero mold and fire damage restoration experts at Central Coast Casualty and Restoration today at (805) 466-5419.