Last week, while getting ready to turn at a busy intersection, I found myself growing a bit impatient with the car in front of me. He wasn’t moving, even though we had the green light and there was no oncoming traffic. Turns out he was keeping us both safe, for several long seconds into that green light a minivan, going east-west to my north-south, tore across traffic, ran into a car crossing the intersection and spun out of control, nearly tipping over in the process. I can only guess that they seriously misjudged the yellow light and chose to speed up rather than slam on their brakes.
It scared the bejeebers out of me. I got home and thought, what if they had hit me? I drive a small car; I could easily have been hurt in a collision like that (and no, I don’t know if there were any injuries). Who would take care of my cats if I were in the hospital? I quickly texted a friend and asked if I could leave my keys with her for just such an emergency.
This comes on the heels of a horrific home fire I recently heard of, in which one woman was killed. I need to say here she did everything right, but fires are unpredictable. But it did prompt me to buy an emergency ladder for my second floor apartment. I know all the ways out of my apartment–there aren’t many–but some of you live in bigger homes. I encourage you to map out multiple escape routes for yourself and your family members. It’s easy to say you’re going to do it, and just as easy to forget. Invest in emergency ladders if you live in a multi-story building. You can buy them on Amazon and I’d bet a myriad of other places, depending on where you live.
Hurricane Ian reminds all of us to have a plan for a power failure. I live substantially inland and hurricanes generally travel east of me, so they’re not my worry, but there can be a lot of reasons for a power failure. Keep a flashlight handy (I’ve heard they don’t recommend you rely on your cell phone as a flashlight in the event your electricity goes out. You should be saving your phone’s power for phone calls). Keep some Nutella and crackers or whatever around at all times (of course that stuff will go bad so you have to eat and replenish!).
And as I hinted above, give a spare key to a trusted friend or family member if you live alone and have pets so someone will be available to care for them in the event of an accident. In fact, even if you don’t live alone, make sure someone is always available to care for your pets.
There are so many things we can do to be prepared for life’s surprises. Not paranoid, but prepared. Be prepared. Save a life.
Image Credits: Checklist © hadjanebia–stock-adobe.com; Flame © Denys Holovatiuk–stock.adobe.com.