Living in a condo can be nerve-wracking for some people. When you’re situated or living in a high place, it is natural to be more afraid of disasters. Despite these fears of possible disasters, there’s no reason to move away from a condo because there are measures you can do to make you and your condo disaster-ready.
Study the location of your condominium
Before going into preparing for a disaster, you first have to understand where your condominium is located geographically. From how elevated the condo itself is to know if it is situated along a fault line, all this information can help you better prepare and react to natural disasters that may happen in the future.
For example, if your condominium is on an elevated land instead of on a flat plane then you would be less susceptible to floods and mudslides. Since the Philippines is prone to storms and typhoons, floods are a common problem every person will have to deal with. When it comes to fault lines, it becomes dangerous to have any building on top of one because fault lines have been known to be displaced when an earthquake of a high magnitude happens.
Inspect the premises and the integrity of your unit
Once you’re aware of the potential risks and complications that can arise thanks to the location of your condominium, the next best thing to do is to check the integrity of the structures and premises of your condo, especially your very own unit. From cracked walls, broken floors, and damaged ceilings to dangling fixtures, identify the things that could fall, break, or otherwise cause harm to you and the people you care about. Report any structural damages to the management of your condominium so that they can also be aware and apply the necessary measures to fix it. Make sure you know where the fire exits and extinguishers are as well.
Prepare an emergency kit
Once you’re done doing your inspection, the next best thing to do is to prepare an emergency kit. As much as possible, try to make a kit that is effective for a number of different emergency situations.
Here’s a simple checklist you should try to follow:
- Drinking water that is enough for a couple of days – make sure you make enough provisions for a number of people as well unless you live alone.
- Non-perishable and easy-to-prepare food – canned goods are an obvious pick here.
- Whistle – this is needed for times when you need to get someone’s attention.
- Flashlights and batteries – power outages are common in disasters so flashlights and torches are a must.
- First aid kit and personal medications – injuries are also common so you should be prepared for them as well.
- Multipurpose tool – this is important for survival in general as it can do many things. Swiss army knives will usually suffice.
- Phones, power banks and chargers – again, to be prepared for power outages.
- Warm clothes – the last thing you want is to get sick in an emergency situation. A spare set of clothes can help in that regard.
- Toiletries and personal hygiene items – in the same way, fresh clothes are important, hygiene and cleanliness helps prevent the spread of disease and can help you clean wounds and other contaminated things.
- Cash, preferably in small bills – practical, and can always be of help as long as establishments are open.
- Important documents such as IDs, passports, deeds or leases to the condo and other properties, insurance policies, medical information
Try your best to prepare a kit that contains most if not all of the above to give you the best chance of being disaster-ready.
Make a disaster plan before-hand
The last thing you need to do is to make a disaster plan. Sure, you may have the information and materials needed to make your condo living disaster-ready, but without having a well-thought-out gameplan, you are still vulnerable. Since you’ve already done your inspections and preparations, a game plan wouldn’t be hard to do.
Start by outlining the emergency exits and potential escape routes when a fire or earthquake happens because this is one of the most crucial things to do in a disaster. If you are living with family, delegate important items in the condo you would want to bring or protect if not the emergency kit itself. If you are living alone, then prioritize the kit first, then the next most valuable item. List all the important numbers on a piece of paper, whether it’s the number of your family and friends or the number of the local government units and institutions.
By following the tips outlined above, you and your condo unit have the best chance of thriving in a disaster. Whether it’s a condo in Makati or elsewhere, the same rules still apply. Stay alert and always be prepared for emergency and disaster situations because there is no telling when it could happen.