What to do if there is an Active Shooter Where You Are

Active shooter situations are rare, but they have dramatically increased and become deadlier in recent years. These shootings occur in places such as churches, workplaces, theaters, schools, concert venues, and shopping malls. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has designated 250 shootings as “active shooter incidents” that occurred from 2000 to 2017. In 2000, there were 7 people total injured or killed in active shooter incidents. In 2017, the total was 729, with 138 killed and 591 injured. Learn more below, including steps for what to do if you find yourself in the same location as an active shooter.

“Active Shooter” Defined

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) defines an active shooter as a person in a populated and confined area who is actively engaged in killing or trying to kill people. The agency says these shooting incidents evolve quickly and are highly unpredictable. If you are where an active shooter is, the DHS says that it’s vital for you to first calmly decide on the best and most practical strategy for protecting your life.

Three Steps on What to Do in an Active Shooter Situation

Experts on mass shootings have devised a simple guideline on what to do if there is an active shooter at your location, as follows:

  • Run
  • Hide
  • As a last resort, fight.

Run or Evacuate

Leave the premises, if there is an escape path that you can access. In doing so, be sure that you:

  • Have your plan and escape route firmly in mind.
  • Run, whether others join you or not.
  • Leave your belongings behind.
  • If possible, help others escape.
  • Warn others and stop them from entering an area where the active shooter might be.
  • Keep your hands visible.
  • If you are given instructions by a person in law enforcement, do what they instruct you to do without hesitation.
  • Do not try to move people who are injured.
  • When you are safe, call 9-1-1.

Hide

If you are unable to evacuate, hide in a place where the active shooter is less likely to find you. It should not be in the shooter’s view. Choose a hiding spot that provides protection from gunfire and won’t trap you or restrict options for movement.

If possible, lock the door or use heavy furniture to blockade the entrance to your hiding area. Next, take the following actions:

  • Put your cell phone or pager on silent.
  • Turn off radios, television, and any other sources of noise.
  • Hide behind something large, such as a desk, table, or cabinet.
  • Remain as perfectly quiet as possible.

If you can neither evacuate or hide, remain calm. If possible, call 9-1-1 to advise police of the location of the active shooter. If you must remain quiet, leave the connection to the dispatcher open with the microphone on and with sound on your phone muted.

Fight

If your life is in imminent danger and the other two options aren’t possible, attempt to incapacitate or disrupt the active shooter by committing firmly to any of the following actions:

  • Take the most aggressive actions you possibly can against the active shooter
  • Throw items and use items as improvised weapons
  • Yell

When Police Arrive

Cooperate with the police, when they arrive on the scene. They will be trying to stop the shooter as rapidly as possible. Keep your hands visible at all times, and put down your purse, jacket, or anything you’re holding. The actions police take may not make sense to you, but trust that they know what they’re doing and simply cooperate with their instructions.

Hopefully, you are never in a situation with an active shooter. But if you are, experts have said that they believe the above outline of actions to take can help you survive. One additional step to take is to have a GPS locator app downloaded to your phone, so family members can find you in an emergency.

Contributing writer: Stephanie McHugh

About the Editor: Bryan Beeler is a Certified Estate and Trust Specialist

Resources: Washington Post, CNBC, FBI.gov

 

Start 2019 by creating a family emergency plan with this top-rated planning tool

Contains forms to record and store everything your family will need if something happens to you

Workbook on flash drive

Free Shipping for a limited time

Create a plan for family emergencies

Create a plan for family emergencies

The Family Emergency Card is a flash drive that contains a workbook to document everything your family will need if something happens to you.  During a crises, families often struggle to find their loved one’s emergency documents, passwords, important contacts, insurance policies, financial accounts, wishes, and other details needed to take care of affairs.  The family emergency card and paperback workbook you can only get here, captures the vital information your family will need if something happens to you.  Simply answer the questions on the forms to create a personalized in-case-of-emergency guide for you and your family.

Financial Information
Bank accounts, retirement accounts, investment accounts, income sources, cryptocurrency keys, credit cards, bills to pay, etc.
Medical Information
Doctors, prescriptions, medical history, allergies, healthcare directives, doctor's appointments, medical response instructions, etc.
Insurance Information
Life insurance, health insurance, disability insurance, property insurance, and other policy information
Passwords
Online accounts, apps, email accounts, cell phone, secured files, safe codes, alarm codes, keys, etc.
Click Here
Letters To Loved Ones
Words of encouragement, words of wisdom, love letters, apology letters, additional expressions, etc.
Children Information
Likes & dislikes, diet, allergies, medical condition, after school activity details, preferences and instructions for their care, etc.
Pet Information
Likes & dislikes, diet, vaccinations, groomer, veterinarian, favorite dog park, preferences and instructions for care, etc.
Click Here
Caregiver Instructions
Who you provide care for, care instructions, their medications, doctor's appointments, daily regimens, etc.
Estate Plan Information
Will, trust, power of attorney, advance directives, pre-planned memorial details, etc.
And More
Click button below to see everything the workbook captures
Five Star Reviews!

Paperback workbook

Password-protectable flash drive contains workbook

Free Shipping for a limited time

The impact of not having affairs in order for emergencies

The impact of not having affairs in order for emergencies

  • Life insurance policies, wills, bank accounts, investment accounts, passwords, contact information, etc., are never found
  • Additional stress, confusion and exhaustion on your family during a crises due to lack of planning
  • Wishes not honored
  • Your financial affairs, children, pets, business, property and other affairs negatively impacted due to not documenting wishes, instructions and other details needed for their care in the event something happens to you

Record everything your family needs to know if something happens to you

Record everything your family needs to know if something happens to you

Benefits

Benefits

  • Minimizes confusion during a crisis
  • Helps ensure your financial affairs, medical needs, children, pets, property, business, and everything else important, is taken care of according to your wishes in the event you are unexpectedly hospitalized, incapacitated, ill, deployed, or pass away
  • Compliments your estate plan for complete protection in an emergency
  • Get one for anyone whose affairs you'll have to take care of if something happens to them

How it works

How it works

Simply insert the Family Emergency Card flash drive into the USB port of your computer, open and complete the workbook forms, save a copy of your will, medical directive, insurance policies and other in-case-of-emergency files on it as well.  Store in a safe place or with your attorney.  Comes with step-by-step instructions, including how to password-protect it.

Not that technical?  Get the paperback workbook instead of the flash drive.

Be prepared for family emergencies.  Order now

Be prepared for family emergencies.  Order now

Paperback workbook

Password-protectable flash drive contains workbook

Free Shipping for a limited time

Your Home is on Fire—What to Do

The peak months for house fires are December and January, though fires occur every day, year around. A house fire can become life-threatening in just two minutes, experts say. An entire residence can be consumed within five minutes. It’s important that everyone in the house know what to do as soon as they are aware of a fire or smoke. A family emergency plan can save lives. The following are tips from fire experts on what to do in the event of a fire, tips on preventing fires, and how to prepare for the possibility of a fire.

Fire! What do you do?

The following are recommended life-saving steps on what to do if your home is on fire:

  • Feel the doorknob before you open a door. If it’s hot or smoke is coming under the door, keep the door shut and use your second way out.
  • If the doorknob isn’t hot, slowly open it while prepared to shut it quickly, if there is heavy smoke or fire on the escape route.
  • If there is smoke en route to your exit, crawl low to the floor. Heavy smoke and toxic gases collect first along the ceiling.
  • If you were unable to get to someone in the home who needed assistance, go outside and call the fire department or 9-1-1. When  first responders arrive, tell them the location of anyone inside.
  • Tell firefighters immediately, if there are any pets trapped in your home.
  • If you are unable to exit, shut the door and keep smoke out by covering vents and openings around doors with tape or cloth. Call 9-1-1 for help. Stay there and signal for help using a flashlight or light-colored cloth at the window.
  • Stop, drop, and roll, if your clothes are on fire. An alternative is to smother flames with a towel or blanket.

Basic Fire Safety Tips

Maintaining working smoke alarms in the home and practicing fire escape plans are steps that save lives every day. The following are basic fire safety tips, as provided by the Red Cross:

  • Install a smoke alarm on each level of your home, inside each bedroom, and outside sleeping areas.
  • Each month, test smoke alarms. Change the batteries, if they aren’t working.
  • Review the fire escape plan with your family and practice the plan every six months.
  • If a fire occurs in your home, get out, stay out of the home, and call for help. Never go back inside for anyone or anything. (Personally, I’d risk my life to save my loved ones; however, it is recommended not to go back inside.)

Protect Essential Documents

Every fire safety expert agrees that under no circumstances should a person stop to grab a valuable of any kind when their home is on fire. Immediate escape is necessary, since flames spread throughout a house in as little as 5 minutes. This is also why it’s so important to get a fireproof file cabinet or box to protect essential documents, including:

  • Your estate plan
  • Your last will and testament
  • Legal documents related to a trust, living will, healthcare directive, and power of attorney
  • Life insurance policies
  • Birth certificates, social security cards, copies of IDs, contracts, titles, and deeds

Store jewelry, heirlooms, and family photos in a fireproof cabinet or box as well.  Consider backing up photos and your important documents on a flash drive such as the Family Emergency Card to conveniently grab and go in an emergency.  A safe deposit box can be utilized to protect items too.

A Comprehensive Family Emergency Plan

In an emergency such as a house fire, you and your family’s safety is the top priority.  Something to also consider when planning for unexpected emergencies is that the difficulty of recovering from a house fire is often complicated by loss of documentation and details about financial matters.  It’s important to have details on your affairs and digital copies of important documents such as your birth certificate, social security card, medical files, insurance policies, and even family photos kept in one location.   A new tool, called the Family Emergency Card provides a simple and guided way of creating a plan for emergencies.  It’s a flash drive that contains forms created by a Certified Estate & Trust Specialist, to document and store details on your affairs and emergency information.  It’s compact enough to fit in a wallet and easy to grab-and-go in an emergency information. The Family Emergency Card can make a world of difference in being able to start piecing your life back together after a fire or any other serious emergency.

Contributing writer: Stephanie McHugh

About the Editor: Bryan Beeler is a Certified Estate and Trust Specialist

Resources: Ready.gov, Restoration1.com, Redcross.org

Start 2019 by creating a family emergency plan with this top-rated planning tool

Contains forms to record and store everything your family will need if something happens to you

Workbook on flash drive

Free Shipping for a limited time

Create a plan for family emergencies

Create a plan for family emergencies

The Family Emergency Card is a flash drive that contains a workbook to document everything your family will need if something happens to you.  During a crises, families often struggle to find their loved one’s emergency documents, passwords, important contacts, insurance policies, financial accounts, wishes, and other details needed to take care of affairs.  The family emergency card and paperback workbook you can only get here, captures the vital information your family will need if something happens to you.  Simply answer the questions on the forms to create a personalized in-case-of-emergency guide for you and your family.

Financial Information
Bank accounts, retirement accounts, investment accounts, income sources, cryptocurrency keys, credit cards, bills to pay, etc.
Medical Information
Doctors, prescriptions, medical history, allergies, healthcare directives, doctor's appointments, medical response instructions, etc.
Insurance Information
Life insurance, health insurance, disability insurance, property insurance, and other policy information
Passwords
Online accounts, apps, email accounts, cell phone, secured files, safe codes, alarm codes, keys, etc.
Click Here
Letters To Loved Ones
Words of encouragement, words of wisdom, love letters, apology letters, additional expressions, etc.
Children Information
Likes & dislikes, diet, allergies, medical condition, after school activity details, preferences and instructions for their care, etc.
Pet Information
Likes & dislikes, diet, vaccinations, groomer, veterinarian, favorite dog park, preferences and instructions for care, etc.
Click Here
Caregiver Instructions
Who you provide care for, care instructions, their medications, doctor's appointments, daily regimens, etc.
Estate Plan Information
Will, trust, power of attorney, advance directives, pre-planned memorial details, etc.
And More
Click button below to see everything the workbook captures
Five Star Reviews!

Paperback workbook also available

Password-protectable flash drive contains workbook

Free Shipping for a limited time

The impact of not having affairs in order for emergencies

The impact of not having affairs in order for emergencies

  • Life insurance policies, wills, bank accounts, investment accounts, passwords, contact information, etc., are never found
  • Additional stress, confusion and exhaustion on your family during a crises due to lack of planning
  • Wishes not honored
  • Your financial affairs, children, pets, business, property and other affairs negatively impacted due to not documenting wishes, instructions and other details needed for their care in the event something happens to you

Record everything your family needs to know if something happens to you

Record everything your family needs to know if something happens to you

Benefits

Benefits

  • Minimizes confusion during a crisis
  • Helps ensure your financial affairs, medical needs, children, pets, property, business, and everything else important, is taken care of according to your wishes in the event you are unexpectedly hospitalized, incapacitated, ill, deployed, or pass away
  • Compliments your estate plan for complete protection in an emergency
  • Get one for anyone whose affairs you'll have to take care of if something happens to them

How it works

How it works

Simply insert the Family Emergency Card flash drive into the USB port of your computer, open and complete the workbook forms, save a copy of your will, medical directive, insurance policies and other in-case-of-emergency files on it as well.  Store in a safe place or with your attorney.  Comes with step-by-step instructions, including how to password-protect it.

Not that technical?  Get the paperback workbook instead of the flash drive.

Be prepared for family emergencies.  Order now

Be prepared for family emergencies.  Order now

Paperback workbook

Password-protectable flash drive contains workbook

Free Shipping for a limited time

7 Steps to Ensure Proper Care of your Pets in an Emergency

If a crisis suddenly occurs that leaves you unable to care for your pets, what will happen to them? Confusion and turmoil typically accompany an individual’s death or sudden incapacitation. Unfortunately, pets are frequently overlooked, in such times. In fact, pets are often discovered days after a crisis has occurred.

To make sure your arrangements for your pets’ care are effective, two things are needed. First, be sure the plan with your designated pet caregiver is rather formal and not just a conversation in passing. Secondly, make sure the person who will look after your affairs knows you have pets and what your plans are for their future.

Ensuring Care of your Pets

The following are the steps you can take to ensure that there is a smooth transition in the care of your pets in your absence:

  1. It’s best to have at least two people committed to caring for your pets. This way, if the timing doesn’t work out for one of them to take on the responsibility, you have a secondary plan. Choose responsible friends,family members, or neighbors you can trust.
  2. Spend some time with the potential caregivers and let them know how many pets you have. Provide them details about the feeding and care of your pets, the veterinarian, and any provisions you’ve made for the pets’ permanent care.
  3. Arrange for financial support of your pets, whether you are incapacitated or have passed away (learn more below).
  4. Keep an emergency card in your wallet that includes names and contact information for your pets’ caregivers.
  5. Provide details about the caregivers to the family member who will handle your affairs in your absence.
  6. Place alert notices on your doors and windows so that first-responders know the number of pets and kinds of pets you have. Do not use the type of stickers that are difficult to remove. If left behind when you move,there could come a time when firefighters risk their lives to save pets that aren’t there any longer.
  7. Put information about the care of your pets on the inside of your front and back doors, so that your pets are provided for, regardless of any type of emergency you may have.

Financial Support for your Pets

If permanent arrangements are needed for your pets because of your illness or injury, you may want the person caring for them to also handle your finances. You can name the person as Power of Attorney (POA) for that purpose. However, a Limited POA could be set up for the purpose of paying only for the expenses of caring for your pets. This would include necessary expenses such as dog food, vaccinations, medical treatments,and medications.

A POA is no longer in effect when you die. At this point, a Trust is needed, in which you or your Executor name a person to care for your pets. You can also opt to assign money to be paid to the person caring for them. Only about 9 percent of pet owners with a will make financial provisions for their dogs and/or cats, according to the American Pet Product Association. Leaving financial provisions is the best way,however, to make sure your cats continue purring and your dogs are still wagging their tails after you’re gone.

A Way to Organize Emergency Pet Care Information & More

According to an experienced Certified Estate and Trust Specialist, resources to ensure that things run smoothly for pets left behind in an emergency have been lacking. One such expert created the affordable Family Emergency Card, to fill in the gap. This new resource accomplishes everything basic legal documents don’t, as far as preparing for the care of pets, and much more, in an emergency. The Family Emergency Card is an excellent resource you can use to ensure that your pets get the uninterrupted, lifelong care they deserve.

Contributing writer: Stephanie McHugh

About the Editor: Bryan Beeler is a Certified Estate and Trust Specialist

Start 2019 by creating a family emergency plan with this top-rated planning tool

Contains forms to record and store everything your family will need if something happens to you

Workbook on flash drive

Free Shipping for a limited time

Create a plan for family emergencies

Create a plan for family emergencies

The Family Emergency Card is a flash drive that contains a workbook to document everything your family will need if something happens to you.  During a crises, families often struggle to find their loved one’s emergency documents, passwords, important contacts, insurance policies, financial accounts, wishes, and other details needed to take care of affairs.  The family emergency card and paperback workbook you can only get here, captures the vital information your family will need if something happens to you.  Simply answer the questions on the forms to create a personalized in-case-of-emergency guide for you and your family.

Financial Information
Bank accounts, retirement accounts, investment accounts, income sources, cryptocurrency keys, credit cards, bills to pay, etc.
Medical Information
Doctors, prescriptions, medical history, allergies, healthcare directives, doctor's appointments, medical response instructions, etc.
Insurance Information
Life insurance, health insurance, disability insurance, property insurance, and other policy information
Passwords
Online accounts, apps, email accounts, cell phone, secured files, safe codes, alarm codes, keys, etc.
Click Here
Letters To Loved Ones
Words of encouragement, words of wisdom, love letters, apology letters, additional expressions, etc.
Children Information
Likes & dislikes, diet, allergies, medical condition, after school activity details, preferences and instructions for their care, etc.
Pet Information
Likes & dislikes, diet, vaccinations, groomer, veterinarian, favorite dog park, preferences and instructions for care, etc.
Click Here
Caregiver Instructions
Who you provide care for, care instructions, their medications, doctor's appointments, daily regimens, etc.
Estate Plan Information
Will, trust, power of attorney, advance directives, pre-planned memorial details, etc.
And More
Click button below to see everything the workbook captures
Five Star Reviews!

Paperback workbook

Password-protectable flash drive contains workbook

Free Shipping for a limited time

The impact of not having affairs in order for emergencies

The impact of not having affairs in order for emergencies

  • Life insurance policies, wills, bank accounts, investment accounts, passwords, contact information, etc., are never found
  • Additional stress, confusion and exhaustion on your family during a crises due to lack of planning
  • Wishes not honored
  • Your financial affairs, children, pets, business, property and other affairs negatively impacted due to not documenting wishes, instructions and other details needed for their care in the event something happens to you

Record everything your family needs to know if something happens to you

Record everything your family needs to know if something happens to you

Benefits

Benefits

  • Minimizes confusion during a crisis
  • Helps ensure your financial affairs, medical needs, children, pets, property, business, and everything else important, is taken care of according to your wishes in the event you are unexpectedly hospitalized, incapacitated, ill, deployed, or pass away
  • Compliments your estate plan for complete protection in an emergency
  • Get one for anyone whose affairs you'll have to take care of if something happens to them

How it works

How it works

Simply insert the Family Emergency Card flash drive into the USB port of your computer, open and complete the workbook forms, save a copy of your will, medical directive, insurance policies and other in-case-of-emergency files on it as well.  Store in a safe place or with your attorney.  Comes with step-by-step instructions, including how to password-protect it.

Not that technical?  Get the paperback workbook instead of the flash drive.

Be prepared for family emergencies.  Order now

Be prepared for family emergencies.  Order now

Paperback workbook

Password-protectable flash drive contains workbook

Free Shipping for a limited time

You Will Die if you Create an Estate Plan

If you haven’t created a last will and testament yet, is it because you’re afraid it would be like a foreshadowing of your death? In China, writing a will is believed to be the same as putting a curse on yourself. Here in the U.S., it seems there has to be some sort of secret superstition attached to making plans for death. Otherwise, why is this important step so frequently neglected?

Results of a recent study show that only 4 in 10 adults in America have prepared an estate plan. The same study showed the top two reasons people give are: They haven’t gotten around to it or they don’t have any valuable assets. It’s important for the benefit of family members left behind, however, to prepare a family emergency plan with guidelines for what to do in the event you are suddenly incapacitated or pass away.

Not Facing Death Creates Problems

Failing to prepare for death usually becomes a personal nightmare for family members, and sometimes it has far-reaching effects.

In China, even talking about death is taboo. Due to the culture, only 1% of 220 million senior citizens in China have prepared an estate plan. Even the educated and wealthy rarely write a will, trust, living will, or other legal documents, such as power of attorney.

The disputes between family members over who inherits property have been causing serious problems throughout society. These things happening on the other side of the world reflect what happens anytime someone dies with no estate plan or emergency planning of any kind.

“Organizing Important Information” is a Sensible Approach

There is surely no bad omen in simply recording and centralizing everyday details that would help you keep track of your own affairs and serve as a useful tool, should someone have to step in to handle things. These are basic matters that can save your family members from deeper despair as they try to take care of your kids, finances, pets, home, funeral, and other matters.

No one can predict when an emergency resulting in injury, illness, or death will occur. Any preparation you make would be helpful, if a serious emergency happens to you. For instance, you could record and organize the following important information:

  • User names and passwords for online accounts
  • Name of your banks / your bank account information
  • Your doctors’ names and contact information plus other important contacts
  • The location of your life insurance policy, health insurance information, birth certificate, marriage certificate, divorce decree, and will, if you have one

Prepare to Live Through a Crisis

If you are truly uncomfortable dealing head-on with your death, some experts say it’s actually even more important to have a living will or healthcare directive than a last will and testament. In case something happens to you and you can’t handle your affairs yourself, a person with this type of power of attorney takes responsibility for decisions related to your health. Depending on what you specify in the legal document, that person could also handle your financial matters, as well.

An Easy Way to Organize for “Just in Case”

Perhaps the easiest way to securely record and organize all of the important information needed in a crisis is to have a Family Emergency Card. This commonsense tool was created by a Certified Estate and Trust Specialist who saw family after family in complete turmoil because they were left with no information about what to do when a loved one died or became incapacitated. Pre-installed planning forms walk you through all of the details your family members may need. Simply plug the Family Emergency Card USB connection into your computer. There are even places for personal notes and your wishes regarding who gets your possessions.

If you’re one of the people who hasn’t prepared for the inevitable because you didn’t know how to get started, the Family Emergency Card is perfect. It’s not just the ideal resource for you, though. It may be the perfect gift to give a family member who has superstitions about death and needs encouragement to prepare for an emergency. Remember there are only two things guaranteed in life, and death is one of them. May as well get used to the idea, and the Family Emergency Card is a big help.

For for more information on the Family Emergency Card click here

Contributing writer: Stephanie McHugh

About the Editor: Bryan Beeler is a Certified Estate and Trust Specialist

Resources

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2017/01/02/chinese-wills-savings-beijing/95750124/

https://www.aarp.org/money/investing/info-2017/half-of-adults-do-not-have-wills.html