“Emergency” is defined in the Merriam-Webster dictionary as, “An unexpected and usually dangerous situation that calls for immediate action” That said, time is of the essence. You do not want to fumble around for a phone number when it occurs. As I mentioned, a significant other should definitely be included as an ICE contact. But given the definition of “emergency”, who else to include? I will start with: A trusted friend or neighbor who lives near where you do and your local police and fire department. In an emergency, your trusted friend will likely not be as frazzled as you are and will be able to think more coherently. If you are away and they have a key to your place, they can check on your home till you get back. For your police and fire department, calling them directly will speed things up as opposed to going through 911.
Your personal doctor should also be on ICE. Should you be out of town and have a medical emergency, his or her knowledge of your medical history can be a lifesaver.
Your personal situation will determine what additional numbers to include in your emergency contacts. For example, if you have or are responsible for youngsters, having the poison control on your ICE list is an absolute must. More than ½ of all calls made to them pertain to children under 5 years of age. Caring for an elderly person then you may want to include their doctor(s) as well.
I will add a caveat with having your contacts listed whether ICE or not. Do NOT have people close to you listed by names like Honey, Sweetie, Mom, Son, etc. I have heard of an instance of a phone being stolen along with a pocketbook and someone being texted asking for a PIN to a bank account. The recipient of the text thinking it was truly coming from his wife gave the PIN to the thief who emptied their bank account. Go another step: only give this information while speaking with a person since you would know their voice. Verify text requests for sensitive information by calling back.
While not emergency contacts, you also should have secondary contacts like the credit bureaus (should you need to contact them), insurance companies, phone numbers of credit card companies, pharmacist, a veterinarian if you have a pet, etc.
This is no means an all-inclusive list. Depending on your personal situation, you may wish to add to this.
If you want to know more about emergency preparedness and your technology as well as other computer issues, I can be contacted at (917) 572-3468 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org .
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