As with most aspects of life, having a plan is better than not having a plan at all. This statement carries weight in anything from business, to projects, to home. Basic survival and the overall protection of families reign high on our life’s priority list. We take precautions to secure our homes including, installing the best locks and dead bolts on doors, guards and locks on windows and in many cases, alarm and home monitoring security systems. Although many professionally installed security systems are often full proof, in the case of human error (forgetting to turn on the alarm, leaving a door unlocked or window open) or taking into account the small number of experienced criminals who have the knowledge and proficiency to overcome these protective measures, it is important to have a plan. Your family needs to know what to do in the event of a break-in or other home invasion scenario.
The biggest advantage to having a home invasion plan is gaining the ability to remain calm during times of distress. Calmer individuals think clearly, whereas frantic minds have a hard time finding logic within the burst of emotions associated with the fear of danger. Having and practicing a plan alleviates that stress resulting in a “do or die” attitude versus a defeatist mind set.
Know Your Home
The best offense is a good defense. It is important to know your home playing field. An invader may have the audacity to break into your home but they do not possess the same knowledge as you. Homes with double room entry and back stairwells make a great asset to the home invasion plan.
Designate A Safe Room
Designate a room in your home as a “safe room.” This room should have added security, additional locks, dead bolts or other blocking mechanism to secure the entrance. This room should also have a phone or other means of calling for help in a hurry such as a lap top with an independent internet source. You should also add food, water, a first aid kit and any medications needed by a family member. There is nothing worse than a child with asthma who has no inhaler on hand. This is also a good location for bats or other instruments of self-defense. If you are a gun owner, this is a great room to keep your secured firearm (other than in a lockbox in your bedroom). The goal is to protect your family and only use exaggerated means of defense as a last resort.
Develop A Code Word
Each family should have a code word that alerts everyone that the invasion plan is in high gear. This word does not have to be secretive or difficult. It should be simple and everyone should know its meaning.
Give Each Family Member A Job To Focus On
Each family member should have a specific job during the invasion plan. Moments of crisis in and of itself are frantic. Having a single task to focus on eliminates the confusion in your mind and the fear in your heart. For instance, if you are a family of 5 – Dad, Mom and three kids ages 13, 7 and 2, each member should have a job. Dad cannot defend his home if he is worried about the baby and Mom cannot support Dad properly if she is worried about everything (as Moms tend to do). Designate the older child responsible for the siblings, particularly the baby. The 7 year old is charged with going straight to the safe room and calling 911. In the meantime, the older sibling has grabbed the baby and is on her way to the safe room while Dad continues to check the house. If each member has a specific job, the odds of scrambling about meaninglessly are slim.
Stay Safe Until Help Arrives
Once everyone is in the safe room, stay put. There is no need for a hero in this scenario. As a parent you have done your job keeping everyone safe by being prepared and practicing your plan of action. Home invasions are scary events but with a plan you can outwit even the most maniacal opponent.
If you have any questions about residential or commercial alarm systems, don’t hesitate to call Delco Alarm at 610-459-0800. Delco Alarm is based out of Aston, PA and provides service to the tri-state area including West Chester, Aston, Media, Chadds Ford, Chester, Kennett Square, Newtown Square, Glen Mills, Malvern, Exton, Downingtown, Philadelphia, Wilmington, DE and New Jersey.