When power outages strike one of the worst problems can be that your senior has no way to communicate with you or with the outside world in general. Having an emergency communication kit ready to go means that your aging family member still has a way to reach out. Here are a few items to consider including.
A Spare Pre-Paid Cell Phone.
Whether your elderly family member has a cell phone of her own or not, a spare pre-paid handset can be incredibly useful. If something happens to her landline and her cell phone isn’t working, your senior has a backup phone that she can use. A simple, inexpensive phone is the best type to use for this purpose.
A Weather Radio.
Weather radios function when the power goes out because they have a battery backup. What makes them different from the standard radio that your senior might already have is that they receive information about severe weather alerts and other issues going on in the area. It’s a great backup to local weather channels that your senior may not be able to access in a power outage.
Portable Chargers and Extra Batteries.
The key to having all of these backup communication devices is being able to power them. In the case of the spare pre-paid phone, for instance, it’s a good idea to charge it every few weeks and to keep a charged power bank as a backup. Just in case, it helps to have lots of spare batteries on hand and even extra chargers, just in case the power comes back up for a little while.
A List of Important Phone Numbers.
If your senior’s cell phone loses its charge completely, her contact list is gone for a while, too. Most people don’t think about that much anymore because the contact section of the phone is so easy to use. Get around that problem by keeping an updated list of important phone numbers in an obvious place, like on the door of the fridge.
Someone to Check in on Her.
Having a home care provider check in on your elderly family member in person doesn’t fit in a bag, of course, but it can help you and your senior to feel a little better about facing bad weather. Home care providers can help your elderly family member to get somewhere safer if the power outage is expected to last longer than a couple of hours, especially if she has medical needs that require electricity. This is particularly helpful if you can’t be there with your senior.
Winter is when your senior might experience the most trouble with power outages and storms that keep her stuck at home, but this type of kit can be helpful for her all year long. Make sure that you periodically check everything in her kit to make sure that it’s in good working order.