As we all know, we are not immune to the disasters of nature. There are certain risk areas in the world where some specific disasters occur. For example, tsunamis on the east coast of Japan and tornadoes in North America (mainly in the United States). In this article, we will focus on how to teach your children the possibilities of a tornado, how to prepare for it, what to do to increase the chances of survival and minimize risks.
We encourage you to spend a lot of time talking, preparing, practicing and sharing experiences with your children. This helps them understand such situations much better. Do not turn these lessons into lectures, as children will surely get bored and will not listen to you. Instead, make it fun, but also point out that, however, it is a serious matter. As long as you practice together and show a genuine interest, the children will copy your behavior.
In this article, we will help you and give you ideas on what to talk about, how to prepare children and how to practice together.
Be ready – preparation stage
At first, you may wonder how to talk to your children about disastrous events. It is very easy to cross the line and actually scare your children too much. However, it is also as easy to keep your conversation as # 8216, “childish”. There is a risk that your child misunderstands you and these valuable lessons have been in vain (and will be forgotten when you have finished).
First of all you need Talk about safety tips in general. Explain to your child to look at the sky regularly, especially on a cloudy and hot day. If there are specific clouds and cloud gatherings in one place, if there is a rotation at the base of the cloud and the cloud descends towards the ground, it flashes around the cloud, etc. Your child should evacuate immediately. At best, this would mean leaving the field open and heading to a nearby solid and resistant building.
Also, talk about that other signs to look for. Generally tornadoes are formed after heavy storms. There may be hail before and then rain. In addition, the air before a tornado forms is heavy, humid and difficult to breathe. It’s hot and it’s humid outside. In addition to the images, the tornadoes are very noisy and sound like very noisy trains.
Also, explain to your son how a tornado is formed and why. Tell them that cold air that accumulates above hot air should fall (since cold air is heavier than warm air). This is the reason why people see a funnel that forms: cold air tries and # 8216; it “escapes” through the hot, thick air (which rises above). These details may seem useless to know, but give an idea of what to look for and what signs nature presents us, so that we can prepare better.
Also, make them realize that a tornado can enter them, as it is an incredible sight. People are often captivated by the sight of a tornado and waste precious time for evacuation. For children it may be even more interesting, but they have to understand that there is no time to enjoy the view.
Also, your child should know that after a tornado It should not pass under bridges, near power lines, damaged buildings. (risk of collapse), etc. Tell them that if they see cables hanging anywhere around them, they should never approach them. Also, that they recognize the smell of flammable gases. Very often gas bottles are damaged and gas escapes. If there are damaged cables nearby, this combination may cause explosions. Teach your child what to do in such situations. Let them know they have to leave the area immediately and look for safer land.
Along with explaining all these details, gather your family and Develop your own security plan. Involve your children in all their plans so they know all the details. Make sure they participate with ideas and show genuine interest in their preparation. If this is not the case, your child may lose important points and details. Find a way to increase your interest so that you become more actively involved.
We also advise you to meet your children. school safety plans. It is understandable that you hurry to go to school with your children, but if there is an emergency situation, you may be in a much greater danger on your way to school. The teachers are well prepared and trained for such events and the children are safe with them. It will be a good idea to know how well prepared the children are, and if there are drills at school and how children are instructed on what to do in the event of a tornado. If you have not done any simulation of this type, suggest it to the school principal (or principal).
If you know that children are trained in school and are aware of the risks (and know how to handle such events), this will give you peace of mind. Reach when the tornado is gone.
Another valuable safety tip is to teach your children about emergency phone numbers and instruct them to always keep their cell phones or smartphones at your fingertips In case you have to make an urgent call. Fixed phone lines are usually damaged after a tornado, so a mobile phone can save your child, if you know who to call and how to request immediate help.
Another useful thing to do together is prepare a disaster safety kit. Involve all the members of the family and do this together. Let everyone know what’s in the kit, how and when to use the items. Prepare a manual and let them know about it. Everyone should be aware of it and know how to use it.
Also prepare a supply kit for your car. You may be in the car when you see that the tornado is developing. Decide together where you will store the disaster kits. They must be accessible to each of their relatives. Teach your children to use bandages and give first aid; It is useful both for them and for their friends.
Knowledge and practice = life saved.
It is very important (as we mentioned above) to practice a lot. All of the above may be too theoretical, but when the real disaster strikes, people tend to panic and run here and there frantically. Then, talk to your children and spouse about each step from the moment you hear the sirens or see the tornado.
Practice exercises and set time limits. Observe how fast everyone is, what everyone decides to take, etc. Talk with your children about the most important things you should take. They will not have to handle documents and identification (which is an adult business), but they should wear warm clothes. Talk and discuss the most important possessions that must be saved. Otherwise, make your child understand that saving his toys is a waste of valuable time, when it comes to life or death.
It may also be a good idea to surprise your family. with improvised sirens and see how they all react, and what they are doing, saving, etc. Observe their actions and analyze them together later. The idea is not to scare them intentionally, but to see their reactions (usually subconscious).
Optionally, you can warn them that they will randomly use sirens to practice an imaginary tornado disaster. In this way, they will know that you plan this, but they will not know when it will happen. And remember, this is not a joke, so do not abuse this or the next time you hear a real siren, you will not believe it and think it’s another joke.
Talk with your children about how Use a time radio. For many reasons, during a tornado, TV, Internet connections, etc. they will be lost Weather radios, on the other hand, can still work and be used to obtain constant updates on the external situation. It is a good idea to buy a small portable radio for the climate for each of your children and instruct them to bring the radios every time they leave home or are alone. Teach them how to use the radio and practice together. If you involve the radio in casual games, they will start to like it and, in fact, they will prefer to use it in other situations.
Talk about weather alerts and how to recognize when a situation is critical and when it is not. Discuss the warning and see the alerts and what each one means, including what to do if you hear it in the news. Children should know that an alert alert is that there is a potential tornado in the area (or nearby areas). It is recommended that people prepare to evacuate to safe places, prepare their safety kits and listen for updates. A warning is when you need to act immediately.
Take only the most valuable possessions and hide in your safe place. Instruct your children on these alerts and practice what they have to do in each one. Tell them to listen to the NOAA radio channel and let them know how to tune in quickly. Optionally, listen to the local radio channel.
Another important thing to talk about with your children is that They should not attempt to communicate with you if they are far from your home. (and you at work). If they are at school, with the parents of their friends, etc., they should stay with them until it is safe outside. While your children are with an adult, they are much safer than trying to reach you. Teach them that in emergency situations they should never flee alone or stay alone. It can be extremely dangerous for them to simply leave school when the tornado hits the city.
In case of warnings, sirens or radio warnings, take immediate action Even if the situation is not life threatening, you need show example about what to do as a warning is issued. Children copy the actions of adults and, over time, they will get used to taking the right actions wherever they are: at school, at a friend’s house, at home alone or with you. In any case, they will be trained and prepared. Also, teach them to always wear a helmet whenever they can in case of a warning issued. It is a good practice to have a helmet on hand.
It also teaches your children What to do if you are alone or far from home.. They must be prepared to act immediately, no matter where they are. Explain that they must stay inside a strong, strong building (or wherever they are at the time a warning is issued or the tornado is seen). They should remain as far as possible from the windows, since the glass can break and hurt them badly.
Staying between walls (corners) can be a safe place. Tell them to look for a low place, flat, where to hide. It is a good idea to find blankets or pillows (including mattresses) to cover yourself. However, the trick is that they should not waste too much time doing so, as they may be exposed to a greater danger. If you can not get a pillow in a minute, then it’s better to hide in the safest place in the building.
If your children are outside, they should go immediately to the nearest building. If there are no buildings nearby, they should find a low place on the ground and rest there. They should put their hands on their heads and necks to protect them.
It is important that you teach your children to stay calm. It can be very easy to say, since even adults can hardly do it. However, breathing techniques can be practiced together. You may also need to learn to stay calm in dangerous situations. Children perceive their parents’ fears and, as a result, become even more frightened. Then, to avoid that, try not to show your fear as much as you can. Speak calmly It is a good idea to sing songs during a critical situation.
When disaster strikes, sing songs together and stay calm. The human brain can not think correctly in critical situations. Therefore, avoiding panic is actually the first step in clarifying thoughts during a disaster.
Safety tips for your children and # 8220; after the tornado and # 8221; stage
Preparing for and during a tornado is as important as knowing what to do next. People were usually surprised and stressed when they realized what had happened. When a tornado fell on your city, it will leave the destruction and debris after its vigil.
You have to instruct your children beforehand that they should not try to reach you after. Let them know that wherever they are, they are safe there and that they will reach them as quickly as possible. Have them trust you that they will be on their way to them and eventually they will meet as soon as possible. Use your (smart) cell phones to maintain a connection in progress and tell others that it’s okay.
You should also reassure them that even if you do not reach them first, there will be rescue teams minutes after the tornado had hit your city. They will be saved quickly after they are gone. Knowing this can give them a little peace of mind and in this way they will feel less frightened.
As a result, your actions will be much more coordinated and reasonable. Of course, in case they get caught in the rubble or fallen walls, they should know that they have to shout loudly to be heard by the rescue group. Even if they are injured, they should try to speak or shout out loud.
If they were together during the tornado, they would probably also be together after the event. In this case, involve your children in subsequent activities, clean debris, etc. On the other hand, let them stay safe in case you decide to look for people under the rubble of fallen buildings, walls, etc. Let your children know that damaged buildings, electric poles (and other electrical devices) are extremely dangerous and should be kept away from them.
Experiencing a tornado can be very difficult for children. They may be afraid of him for life. It is your task as a parent to prepare them, practice with them and talk about them before and after. These things will make it much easier for children to cope with stress and fear. This will also help them avoid panic attacks in the future when they encounter another tornado or other natural disaster.
And, after all, one of the best things you can do for your children in the event of a tornado is to talk about it. Every time you hear the news of a tornado that hit any city, listen carefully. Both the news report and what the affected citizens of the city say can be equally valuable. It is the experience of other people that can help your child get an idea of the situation. Also, talk about how your child feels, before and after. Speaking through the emotion that a tornado causes can relieve stress and can be a bonding experience.
As long as your children are aware of the dangers and their own emotions, the crisis will be handled much more easily. A good and strict preparation previously combined with drills can be the last safety advice for both you and your children.