Most of us have heard of situations in which a person who was panicking could not remember even the most mundane information such as their home address or phone number when the emergency operator asked for it.
Stress, especially fear, results in what is often referred to as an “adrenaline dump.” When this large dose of the “fight or flight” hormone enters the blood stream, it raises blood pressure and heart rate but all too often impairs our ability to think clearly.
Safety experts know this and recommend keeping flashcards displaying our address and phone number on the night stand, in the living area and any other place we spend a lot of time.
This way if you do call 911, especially from your cell phone, you can read this information to the operator if the stress of the situation has overwhelmed you.
- This would be particularly important if there was an intruder in the home and you were calling from the room you had barricaded yourself in. (Sometimes referred to as a Safe Room or Panic Room)
Another suggestion is to put an address label on the back of the handset or cordless phone.
We may not be able to control how we react to fear, but at least we can put a strategy in place to compensate for it.