This is a contributed post and therefore does not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of this blog or its author.
Having children that have autism can teach you many things. A natural curiosity for the human mind is definitely going to grow in you. The effort to learn about how your child thinks and what could possibly make their life better is always going to be something you want to have continually.
Different situations that you face in your life and your family’s life will lead you into new avenues. One of them will be what you need to do to keep your autistic children safe when emergencies of varying kinds occur. You never know when you need to move to a safer place if you live near a coastal town. Hurricanes and earthquakes can be quite traumatic for autistic children as nothing makes sense, but they know they are in danger.
So if you are ever in a position whereby a flash flood is happening, or a tornado is ripping through your neighborhood, you need to know how to keep your family safe and be proactive in physically moving them to safety.
First, you must explain
Sit your children down and try to get them to be calm and attentive. Take your time to explain to them what a natural disaster is. You’ll need to go through various kinds such as earthquakes, tornados, cyclones, volcanos, wildfires, and floods. Explain how each one of them has a different sound and the earth reacts to them differently. Notify them about the kinds of damages that can occur when these disasters happen because this will help them to understand the potential danger that could be close to them.
This is will also help your children to be less resisting to when action does need to happen as they will be able to compute that they need to get away from the harm coming their way. Next, you need to explain to them what your role and their role will be. Instead of just giving them orders, allow them to help a little bit, so they feel included. It also helps that the family is altogether working toward a common goal such as packing up quickly or putting food in the car in case of a long stay away from home.
Plan your escape and reaction
People who work in crisis management are incredibly adept at planning for almost every eventuality. It takes a lot of creative thinking and imagination to contemplate the knock-on effects of natural disasters. The basic planning you should do is for food and water.
How to build a 2 week emergency supply
Make sure you have enough food to eat while on the go, such as tinned beans and biscuits. Bring with you lots of bottled water as you never know when the water supply is going to be back in action. If you would like to know more about how you can plan your emergency reaction, then consider an emergency management diploma from Wilfrid Laurier which goes into emergency management planning. These techniques can be used for the sake of public safety as well, so if you want to take up a career in this industry, this diploma will start you on the right track. The issues in contemporary public safety is one of the more advanced modules that you will cover, but the skills you gain are accepted across multiple industries.
In the moment
If and or when you are ever in a situation when you need to leave your home to avert danger then you need to be ready to be calm and collected in the moment. Think about what it is you need first. Routes to safer higher ground from a flood, or over to a relatives house when a tornado is coming should be your first concerns. You should be storing emergency supplies where you can quickly get them, such as in the garage or attic. Bring them into your car and then next work on getting your children dressed.
Don’t start changing their clothes; let them keep what they have on. However take with you a cold and wet range of clothes such as jeans, coats, and gloves. Try to get your children to help pack the things they want by asking which kind of clothes they would like to take with them. Keep talking with your children while you’re driving away from the home. Suddenly they are driving away from home, and they might have been in bed sleeping, so to avoid getting them anxious keep speaking to them and keeping their mind off what’s going on.
Natural disasters are often scary for autistic children, but if you have already explained to them some of the things that could happen, they will feel safer. If you want to learn more about crisis management, then you can always learn about this as a career option.