Disaster can strike at any time and without warning, whether the disaster is natural or man-made. How prepared are you in the event of an emergency? Ask any emergency responder, and he or she will tell you there is a strong chance that our public agencies and programs will be overwhelmed in the event of a catastrophe. You should be prepared to be on your own without assistance for at least three days. To this end, here are some tips to help you on the road to preparedness.
Store Some Water
Whether you experience a natural disaster or just lose water for an afternoon, having a supply of water on hand in your home perhaps is the most important thing you can do to prepare for an emergency. It is recommended to store at least one gallon per person, per day, for at least three days’ worth of water. The most hygienic way to store water is to purchase pre-filled, sealed containers. If you choose to refill containers that previously held other consumables, be sure to clean the container thoroughly first, and add several drops of bleach after filling to prevent stagnation. Make sure the containers are well-sealed, and store them in a cool, dark place, away from chemicals like pesticides or gasoline to avoid contamination.
Gather Emergency Supplies
It can be a major financial undertaking to set aside supplies for use in an emergency, but it could be the key to your survival during and after a major disaster. It is not necessary to go out and buy everything you think you might need in an emergency, nor should you feel you need to buy everything at once. It can be much more affordable to purchase supplies over a period of time, building a kit over a period of months or even a year. A good emergency preparedness kit should contain shelf-stable food. Moreover, include extra clothes, sturdy shoes, money, first aid supplies and a small quantity of any maintenance medications you or your family may require. Be sure to keep copies of important documents, heat source, light source, items for shelter (tarp, rope, etc), and of course water or a way to purify water.
Know Your Safety Procedures
Depending on where you grew up, you may recall instructions regarding tornadoes or earthquakes when you were in grade school. Many of these ideas still apply. During a tornado, for instance, you should go to the lowest floor of your house to a location with no windows and huddle with hands covering your head for protection from debris, or, if you have no basement, shelter in the bathtub or anywhere low and windowless. Likewise for earthquakes, we learned in school that it was safest to crawl under a table or desk or stand in a doorway; studies have since shown that it may be as safe to be next to a table as under it. A table can create an angle of open space between it and the floor if debris falls from the ceiling, but standing in a doorway offers little protection.
Have a Plan
The single most important step in preparation for disasters is to have a comprehensive emergency plan. You and everyone in your family should be familiar enough with the plan to know emergency exits, where to meet up after an emergency if you get separated, and what to do during and after a given emergency situation. It is also vital to have emergency contacts noted in an accessible location. We at Game Plan Preppers have made emergency planning a central part of what we do. Contact us for more information; we’d be happy to build a plan for you!
No matter where you start on the road to preparedness, the important thing is that you begin. For more information on preparation, please visit www.gameplanpreppers.com to make your plan today.