What are the most useful things I should have on hand in case of an Emergancy, or Disaster ?
This is a huge and crucial subject. Many people out there could really care less because they feel it always happens to the other guy, city or country. Or the government and authorities will take care of them and their families. I am sure they would do their best in a major crisis but their resources are also limited. And it also helps responders out there for us all to be ready, and as self sufficient as possible.
So what have you got ? Got a plan for your family to reunite ? Got a safe place planned out to go, and a safe way to get there ? How much food and water do you have, are you ready for the long haul if and when store shelves become empty and close down ? What about if the power goes out for an extended period of time ? Same with the water ? Ewwwwe, you mean I can't take a shower ? Gross ! Ahh to be all comfy and cozy, so nice ! For many of us the chances of staying that way look good........?
I live here in Portland, Oregon. We do not get many tornadoes, terrorist threats, tsunamis, or threats of civil unrest. However we are surrounded by several loaded volcanoes which are really nice to look at on a sunny day, and great for camping, hiking, skiing and what not. But most of us remember Mt.St. Helens ? That did a lot of destruction, ( by the way, it is also today one of my very favorite camping spots too !!). Reports tell us that Mt Rainer by Seattle, and Mt Hood here by Portland have been doing some rumbling the past few years and they are watching and waiting. We are also warned that here in Portland specifically that we are overdue for ...as they call it.... "The Big One". The major earthquake that should be happening sometime around now, as in this decade ? There are many homes on hillsides here, and those homeowners for years have been advised to shore up your property, and get ready. We are also advised to get a family plan together because Portland is also known as "Bridge City". We have many bridges here, and they are used heavily everyday. A powerful earthquake would most certainly destroy them. I sure wouldn't want to be caught on one then !
So that brings me back to...what have you got, really ? Seriously, I am not an "alarmist, prepper, or anything like that...well maybe just a little preppy.....grin, but I am definitely going to make sure my family is ready if in case ! We have a family plan in place, we also have food, water, generator, protection devises, medical supplies, bug out bags, etc. All I am saying is that you might want to consider this as well. That's why I wrote this, to inform. Many people I discover do not have the first clue as where to even begin ?
Bug Out Bags as they are called, are real simple. These are small backpacks, or some kind of durable bag you keep in the trunk of each car. In these are spare clothes (socks, undies, pants, shirts, sweater or light jacket, etc), gloves, hat. The idea is to keep this lightweight, so do not pack this like you are going on a fun filled trip, keep it simple...1 pair of each, except for a few socks, and undies (in case you crap your pants from all the danger and destruction !). Also in this bag put some band-aids, compress, neosporin, energy bars, nuts or ??, a few water bottles, toothbrush/travel size paste, dry matches, fire-starter, mace if you have it, pocket knife,an emergency rain poncho and some hand warmers. It sounds like a lot, but this all packs down very nice, like a school backpack size. This is designed to grab and go if you have too, and also if you are stuck in your car and cannot get home anytime soon. Very very handy indeed !
Extra Food and Water are easy to save up on. You do not have to go out and spend hundreds of dollars on this in one trip. If you do not want to buy cases of water bottles ( which are actually quite cheap), then when you are finished with that gallon of milk or juice, simply rinse it out a few times very well, fill with water and begin to stock them up. This way you will have clean water to drink, brush, cook with , etc. Store as many of these as you realistically can somewhere out of the way, and in a cool dark place is best to prevent algae growth. Food is not hard either. Whenever I go shopping I always try to buy 1 or 2 extra things for my food storage area. Can food has a strong shelf life, so does a case of ramon noodles, jars of nuts, energy bars....anything that will not spoil and is well sealed. There are many different ways and ideas about emergency food prep, what kind, how much, etc. Try to plan though for a minimum 2 weeks. More is better. Choices of what kind of food is best has long been a big fat debate! No you do not want to stock up on candy, cookies and gumdrops only, although some would be nice right ? As far as I am concerned, any food stored for emergency regardless of how healthy it is, or isn't....is a good thing when the stores are cleaned out, closed or no power/ water. You will at least have something to eat. And if whatever is happening out there to cause all of this, goes on for more than a few weeks....we all got problems right ? More food, more water, is a very good thing.
Other things to store : Meds, and Prescriptions.... what do you take everyday ? Save some for emergency..(.a 2 week supply is a good start and guide for all of this.....except the bug out bags). You will want to make sure you have first aid supplies, firewood, candles, flashlight and spare batteries. A hand crank radio is good to have to keep up on things if the power is out for a long time..like days and weeks. Seriously, could happen. Weapons....hmm, I will only say that you should have something to defend yourself with...if in case. There are other options out there for this if you are not a gun person.....mace, stun guns, tasers, ...more mace ? ..something.........anything......please do not leave yourself defenseless !
There are all kinds of books out there on this topic. They are good reading. I do not think we are in any special times unlike the past. There has always been threats all over the globe since time began. We are no different today, except technology is way more advanced ! And we are very dependent upon the infrastructure. If the power goes out for more than a few days people start to get very cranky !!! And with the weather patterns, power grid failures, clean water failures, and all the other fun threats breathing down our necks...who knows ? Just be prepared ok ? At the very least think about it.