Emergencies can cause you to become discombobulated resulting in cloudy thinking and poor decision making. Good decision making is largely a function of having great information to guide you to an answer. The only way to get great information is to ask great questions.
When an emergency strikes, being prepared means having a list of predetermined questions to ask yourself. If you have ever visited a doctor and left thinking “I wish I would have asked….” then you are already familiar with the how important it is to write down your questions before hand. Now amplify that phenomenon during an emergency and how you have the making of a total disaster.
So, what questions should you ask? Here’s just a few…
How did we learn of the incident?
When did it happen?
Where did it happen?
What was the cause?
What is the extent of the damage?
What population is affected?
How are they affected?
How long will they be affected?
How many dead?
How many injured?
How many missing?
Has mutual aid been requested?
When did we respond?
Who is in field command?
What has been done so far?
What is the status of field response?
What is the long-term situation?
What is the short-term situation?
What is the short-term plan?
What is the long-term plan?
What executive actions or decitions are needed?
What is our briefing schedule?