Asking For Help

Prepare your family

What Would You Do If…?

an emergency occurred in your home. Would you know what to do, who to call or even the quickest way to evacuate your home? – download our quick guide to preparing for an emergency

Before an emergency

During an emergency

After an emergency

Stay safe on the road

Put an In Case of Emergency (ICE) number in your phone

Get your kids involved and prepared for an emergency with our interactive games

Before an emergency

You should consider the following BEFORE an emergency:

  • Know the risks in your area
  • Consider putting together an emergency kit to keep at home and in the car, for example contacts, important documents, mobile phone charger
  • Use the What Would You Do If…? postcard or our Z-card to put all your emergency contacts in one place, for example details of school and work, insurance and doctors details, and keep them in a place you will be able to find them easily
  • Create an evacuation plan
  • If you find yourself in a flood zone consider flood protection
  • Know the location of your water, gas and electricity supplies to your home and find out how to turn them off 
  • You may be entitled to a priority service during a utility failure. Check and find out how to register
  • Ensure you have insurance and know where the documents are located
  • Book yourself on a first aid course so you are prepared for medical emergencies – Find a course with St Johns Ambulance
  • The British Red Cross has more information about how you can help your own family or others. They also have some interactive pages for kids or you can check out our kid’s games page
  • Take appropriate precautions to protect yourself and your home: 12 top safety tips

RadioDuring an emergency

In a major emergency, you could be close by or believe you may be in danger. The best advice is to go inside a safe building, stay inside until you are advised to do otherwise, and tune in to local radio or TV for information.

Of course, there are always going to be particular occasions when you should not ‘go in’ to a building, for example if there is a fire. Otherwise GO IN, STAY IN, TUNE IN.

After an emergency

Once the emergency has been dealt with by the emergency services, recovery of your family, your community and your businesses will start.

Once you have arrived home:

  • check your house on returning home, the same as you would when you return home from a holiday
  • contact your insurance company
  • contact the relevant utility companies
  • speak to your neighbours

Please be aware that many staff, including your local council and relevant companies, may be involved in dealing with the emergency and therefore services may not continue to be provided as normal during and immediately after an incident

You will not be on your own, support will be available. This can be accessed through your local authority, humanitarian assistance and charitable organisations. Keep listening to BBC Three Counties or a local radio station to hear more about the available support. Find your frequency

Stay safe on the road

When you’re travelling, ensure you are properly prepared.

  • When making a journey check Met Office’s winter weather portal
  • Check that you know where to find traffic and travel information
  • Check local and national weather forecast and keep up to date with the latest warnings
  • Check that you have an emergency kit available in your car

Make sure you have an emergency kit. Even usually short journeys may turn into lengthy ones because of traffic incidents such as these. Therefore when planning for a car journey it is useful to have some basic items alongside or part of your emergency kit such as:

  • Bottles of water
  • Non – perishable food such as crackers, nuts, cereal bars and dried fruit
  • Chocolate and/or sweets

During the cold months, BLLRF also recommends that you prepare now for the challenges that some weather, such as snow can create. You can do this by packing the following items in your emergency car kit:

  • Ice scraper and de-icer
  • Torch and spare batteries- or a wind-up torch
  • Warm clothes and blankets – for you and all passengers
  • Boots
  • First aid kit (from February 2014 the British Standards Institute (BSI) launched the first UK standard for motor vehicle first aid kits. Make sure yours meets this standards)

During the cold months, BLRF also recommends that you prepare now for the challenges that some weather, such as snow can create. You can do this by packing the following items in your emergency car kit:

  • Ice scraper and de-icer
  • Torch and spare batteries- or a wind-up torch
  • Warm clothes and blankets – for you and all passengers
  • Boots
  • First aid kit
  • Jump leads
  • A shovel
  • Road atlas
  • Sunglasses (the glare off snow can be dazzling)

For information go to the Highways Agency website

In Case of Emergency (ICE) number:

  • An ICE number in your phone allows emergency responders such as paramedics to contact your emergency contact / ICE partner if anything should happen to you. Having this number listed as an ICE number on your phone book or on the locked screen of your phone helps responders find it easily.

Follow these tips to get the best out of ICE:

  • Make sure the person whose name and number you are giving has agreed to be your ICE partner
  • Give your ICE partner a list of people they should contact on your behalf – including your place of work.
  • Ensure your ICE partner knows about any medical conditions that could affect your emergency treatment – for example allergies or current medication
  • Choose a number that’s easy to get in touch with i.e. if your ICE partner works full time a mobile number might be better than a home number
  • If you are under 18, ensure your ICE partner is a parent or guardian authorised to make decision on your behalf – for example if you need a life or death operation
  • Should your preferred contact be deaf, then type ICETEXT then the name of your contact before saving the number