We a-go-gos live in California, on the coast. We are also pretty close to a nuclear power plant. While we are not exactly on the coast as it is, we're still in an area that can experience tsunamis and ocean surges. As we all keep our attention on the sadness that the people of Japan are experiencing, I hope that anyone who lives in any type of area that is prone to scary elements has an emergency plan.
Be aware of what geological disasters can happen in your area. Educate yourself and be as prepared as possible. There is much you cannot account for but small matters can help. Japan is a nation that has a pretty amazing plan. I cannot even begin to imagine the chaos that is happening there. Take the steps to prepare for what you can and be ready to act when and if you need to.
Hera are a few things to think on:
You and your family members should know what objects are most important to rescue and you should have an out of state contact to call to let them know you are safe and where you are so that they can relay the message to your family. You should have an overnight bag packed with clothes, shoes and prescriptions in your car at all times and it would be a good idea to start stashing away cash for emergencies. A similar backpack withing reach at home is also a good thing. Make sure there are first aid supplies in it as well as a handful of granola bars or other not-as-perishable food item. Don't forget the important documents and if you store all your work on the computer make sure you back it up.
Keep favorite photos in an internet account like flickr, or burn to a cd. Transfer important documents to a flash drive on a regular basis just to be safe. And, as always, make sure you have water. I know bottled water isn't the trend when we are all trying to be environmentally sound but if a disaster such as a tornado or earthquake hits, chances are there won't be available drinking water on hand. We make sure to have at least 5 gallons of water in the casa and another 2 liters in the car. Most importantly stay safe and stop to help others when/if you can. This is the time when we can all use a helping hand.
And finally, set up a status check four times a year if you can. We all get comfortable and forget to keep things in check, we a-go-gos included. I haven't backed-up any documents in a very long time, all those granola bars were eaten on our trip and I think I know where the paperwork is. That said, I think it is time for a checklist.