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· Registered
21 Posts
How could they escape a locked down school if all the doors were locked and people were guarding the doors?
Here in my county in NC, school "lockdown" is not actually locked doors, but rather a gathering and accounting for all the kids. When heavy weather hit a a few years ago and we were under a tornado warning, I went to my son's elementary school and my daughter's middle school and walked in and got them. We have "resource officers" here and at the middle school level the RO played at stopping me, but I just walked past him and got my daughter.

"Lock down" I guess has different meanings everywhere...

· Emergency Manager
103 Posts
Meeting place

Does everyone here have an emergency meeting location like a house that everyone goes to if communication systems go down?
Thanks for this interesting question.

One the surface, it comes across as basic, i.e. The house is on fire and we're meeting at the old oak tree.

Plan now what you will do. Will you meet at Aunt Suzy's or is everyone expected to get to Salina on their own? Write the plan and make sure everyone, including Aunt Suzy is aware of YOUR plan.

Communication systems may fail. Communications will not. Amateur Radio teaches us that.

Search the board for FRS. The toy walkie talkies can be used to keep track of the kids, the wife, the hubby, if they are in range. Practical, functional distance is about a half-mile. That can reduce the concern for the loved one, if you can talk to them before you can see them. Just don't use Channel One for your chatting.

Evacuation is a consideration. Again, this has been discussed on the board. Considerations include:

Do you want to evacuate in a direction where there is danger? In the case of the school lockdown, schools have a plan for when they gather all the students inside. If the threat is between you and the school, the school locks down, what will you do?

The threat may be a chemical spill. You are hearing it's time to shelter in place . Do you know how?

Most of the threats we face every day are local emergencies. Look at the headlines. The footprint on most of the news is a few blocks or, at the most, a mile. The exceptions are nuclear weapons and hurricanes. :)

Thanks again for the interesting question.

· ke4sky
190 Posts
Simple, Cheap Signal Devices Everyone Should Carry

Inexpensive, simple signal devices which everyone should carry are a whistle, a flashlight and a signal mirror!

A whistle carries much farther than you can yell. Its use requires little effort and almost no training. Every family member should have one. One long blast is a STOP or Attention! signal. Two short blasts means Go or OK. Three long blasts is a universal distress signal. It is practical to experiment with various suitable types which produce different sounds, so that family members can recognize who is calling. For instance, smallest kid gets a simple American Classic pea whistle, which has the highest vibrating tone, Mom gets the Fox 40 Howler, older child gets the Lifesaver Storm, and Dad has the two-tone ACR Coast Guard type. For some ideas see:


A small flashlight is safer than flares, and battery life far exceeds a flare's burn time. Kids should have a Photo Microlight II on the zipper pull of their outer garment AND a whistle around their neck. See:

EQUIPPED TO SURVIVE (tm) - Tweeeet In Time Saves Lives

A signal mirror is the most effective daylight signal device, requires no batteries or pyrotechnics and is simple to use. Female family members will discover it is a multi-purpose device and is easy to use:

Flares and other pyrotechnics usually work only once, are bulky, good ones are expensive, and all pose a risk of fire. But if you absolutely must get wet wood going after your canoe full of cold and wet Boy Scouts has capsized I can tell from experience you that nothing beats a railroad flare!

· YourAdministrator, eh?
8,782 Posts
CB-radio in all the vehicles and we can pick-up the FRS as well. My personal favorite channel is 16 for all my communications. I have a full set of FRS as well and they use a built in rechargeable battery that can charge up from 110v and 12v systems.

We have our daily meeting places - no-one leaves till everyone is there. We follow the "no separation" policy. It makes it easier to make sure that everyone is ok and then we can travel together (foot, vehicle, caravan, etc).

Our primary long-distance communication is cell phone and via texting (anything beyond CB / FRS range). Whistle is used when out in the bush, not in the city (too many other noises can drown it out).

· Registered
50 Posts
The topic should be discussed, I guess to add to this you figure a communications failure which is due to a larger situation?

From an early age we discussed with the kids what to do if the house was on fire, we have a place to assemble and they know where to go from there.

In my area when a school go under lock down (depending on the type of lock down) there is no getting in or out. They don't gather everyone and meet in a single location, each classroom is locked down. The kids are better off if they are caught outside as they have the ability to move out. As I said there are two types of lock downs here a hard lock down and a soft one. The soft lock down the school is just more observant, locking all but the front door and people posted at all exits, you can still move around if needed but only through one location. In a hard lock down there are 2 -3 counties worth of SWAT surrounding the building. No getting in or out.

Keep in mind as stated before communication systems can fail, the systems we are use to can become overloaded, keep in mine even in cell service is overloaded many times text messages will go through.

I grew up in a city and we had a family place in the woods, about 6 hours away (I moved out of the city to our family place in the woods many many years ago) but back then the meeting place was our place in the woods, it still is for my family still living in the city, we may not have good communications in a SHTF situation but I know at some point everyone will meet here.
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