Surviving a natural disaster is difficult for persons of any age, notably for those 65+ who are still living at home. In addition to the initial disaster itself, the aftermath can be much worse for the elderly. Their physical and mental limitations should also be taken into consideration.

Many seniors also have special daily medication, nutrition, and other care requirements. These needs have to be addressed to ensure their safety and wellbeing. If you are currently caring for a senior, it’s so important to help them prepare in advance for the unexpected. This is especially true if they live far away. To help ensure that they’re ready, use these proven disaster preparedness tips.

Develop an Emergency Plan

Sit down with your senior loved one(s) and discuss what would happen in the event of a disaster. What if the power was off for several days, or even weeks? Think about situations when essential banking, grocery, and communication services are all unavailable. If their home isn’t badly damaged, will they try to stay put, or move to another location? Once you’ve discussed all those scenarios, develop an emergency plan that includes these 4 components:

1. Mobile disaster preparedness kit

According to FEMA, all persons should keep an easily accessible emergency kit in their homes containing the following:

  • Nonperishable food items and bottled water for at least 3 days
  • Blankets
  • Flashlights, a transistor radio and batteries
  • Personal hygiene products
  • Medications
  • Extra car and house keys

In addition, people aged 65-and-over should include in their emergency kits:

  • Medication lists and physician information
  • An in case of emergency (ICE) conta