Friday, May 22, 2009

Be Prepared


My friend, Ex-Pat, has been kind enough to do a post on being prepared in case of an emergency. This is something that I have put off for far too long. Yet I am reminded that emergencies take place on a daily basis all over the world. The thought that somehow it would not happen here is ludicrous. The flu can hit anywhere, at any time. Being a specialist for a travel immunization program at one point in my life, I would like to suggest that everyone make sure their tetanus is up to date. That disease, found mostly in soil and rusted iron, is 100% fatal. You need the immunization every 10 years. Now I have a couple of questions for you:
  • Does anyone know anything about the best freeze-dried foods to store? We haven't back packed in a long time. Any favorites?
  • We have a year-round creek that runs right outside. It comes straight from the 8500 ft level, so we know it's clean. Not for drinking, however. Anyone know of a good water filter for potable water?
  • Do you have any suggestions for things to put into a disaster bag?
I would love any suggestions or thoughts you might have on this. Preparing for an emergency is prudent. Have a great three-day weekend!

24 comments:

Marguerite said...

Being prepared for disasters is part of life, here on the Gulf Coast. After Katrina, we added a pirogue and an axe to our attic. A very good idea if you live on a bayou, lake, or any large body of water. After watching many of my friends and family lose everything they owned, not once, but twice in three years, to Hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Gustav and Ike, you can bet that my disaster kit is always ready.

nikina said...

I think I've been to save all my life...or careless ??? well, i lived in a safe part of the world for most of my life, we didn't have hurricanes, tornados, floodings, fires or earthquakes...i never had to think about preparing for an emergency...interesting post...made me think :)

Verily I go. said...

I am in hurricane territory. I've stocked up on drinking water already, 20 gallons. 2-20 gallon propane tanks. A generator, 10 gallons of gas. Cash. I will this next week get a huge bag of cat food. I haven't considered freeze-dried, will rely on a full larder of canned goods. And rum, just in case I'm stormed by pirates!

Lover of Life said...

Marguerite - Thanks. You would certainly know how important it is to be prepared. The Gulf Coast has taken it's share of disaster. Thanks for the axe idea.

nikina - Even living in very safe places - the flu can always be an issue. I have started thinking having a few things put aside is just being prudent in this day and age. I'm just getting around to it and I live on fault lines!

Verily - Good thought about the pet food - and the rum (LOL) - thanks!

Sniffles and Smiles said...

My husband is the whiz on all of this...he's out of town, now. But when he gets back, I'll ask him what water filters, etc. he has stored in our basement (I can't find anything down in that dark place...LOL) and I'll let you know :-) Thanks for this post! You are so wonderful... you touch on such timely issues, and encourage everyone to do the things we know we ought! Bravo! You're the best! ~Janine XO

MzzLily said...

Don't forget something to summon help. If you're going remote and can't depend on cell service, make sure you have a signalling device. You never know when someone might need to find you. Always give someone your itinerary; hopefully someone that will check to see if you made it back as scheduled.

Kate said...

Make sure you know where flashlights are and store batteries (not the rechargeable kind... the electricity to recharge them is often not available in an emergency) in the refrigerator. They will have a longer shelf life that way.

Better yet, get a hand crank radio and a hand crank flashlight.

Keep ready cash in a safe at home in case banks are not operational.

Use an old backpack as a 72 hour survival kit. Keep it in the garage or somewhere in the house that you can grab it quickly on the way out the door. Some people keep it in the trunk of their car. Pack it with items you will need to sustain life for that length of time. Items include food, clothing, medications, and personal hygiene. Inspect and replace out of date items every 6 months.

Hope these ideas are helpful!

scarlethue said...

Radio and batteries, flash light and batteries, battery-operated fan and batteries, first aid kit, non-perishable snacks, bottled water, over-the-counter medicines and refills of prescriptions if needed, copies of personal i.d.s, maps, list of phone numbers, cell phone charger, a roll of quarters (for laundry and/or pay phones), plastic bags for wet clothing or other items, extra toothbrushes/toothpaste and deodorant just in case. If I were super-prepared I'd have a generator too, but I'm not. Someone said pet food-- excellent idea.

I live in the northern edge hurricane country, so this is my list. It would differ, of course, if I were further south or if I were facing something like winter storm disasters. Then I'd need a heater and wood and other sorts of things I have no knowledge of. :)

Leah J. Utas said...

I didn't know, or had forgotten, that tetanus was fatal.

Lydia said...

Our dogs' vet was telling me about tablets that he uses to clean water while backpacking. That's not what you're asking about though, sounds like you are looking for a system....

Speaking of backpacking/hiking, this might sound silly but I'd include a jar of Vaseline and a packet of moleskin. If you had to walk a long way they would ease blisters and could make the difference in being able to continue on.

What a good idea for a post for the three-day weekend. Very thoughtful of you.

Kathy's Klothesline said...

Duct tape. Don't forget to stick a roll of duct tape in that emergency bag. It can be used to temporarily fix just about any thing. If you were in a boat with a hole...could be used to secure a splint for a broken bone, etc. You just can't eat it.

CrazyCris said...

This is definitely food for thought. I haven't pondered on this subject for ages, and last time I did it was more along the lines of a game to me. I guess I've gotten complacent living in a "safe" part of the world. Once upon a time when we lived in more dangerous areas my mom had a ready folder with all our passports and important documents and kept the jewelry handy in case we had to leave the country in a hurry. Also kept photocopies of important documents in a separate place.

So I guess my suggestion would be to make sure you have copies of all your important docs stored separately, perhaps make sure your kids have a copy. And in this day age it probably can't hurt to have a flashdrive with scans of those docs and important files you might need.

Jo said...

We are prone to earthquakes here, so we all have been given earthquake preparedness kits to keep under our desks at work. We can also buy emergency kits for home. But I must admit, I have not given it much thought, and now I definitely will.

Natalie said...

I have our birth certificates, etc. and a selection of photos in a bag, ready to grab. We were in floods two years ago and lost about $10 000 worth of stuff.We needed to prove who we were for financial aid, insurance etc.

linda said...

fabulous post and an important consideration--no, scratch that, necessity, and I live in shaky california!! I think I am very far removed from the possibility even tho I have lived through a big one or two, where the fridge went across the room and fell over, spilling it's contents and everything that was up came down..not pretty...

great post!

linda said...

one of the most important items and one of the most neglected as well, are the daily meds some of us take...I have found that when asking for enough to "put aside", I get a blank look from the doc or an "it's impossible"... don't really know what I would do except die right now as I do not know how to get a supply to lay away...I hoard them , a dozen or so, now and then...just one of the problems in an emergency!

have a good weekend!

Lover of Life said...

Thanks everyone! Lots and lots of good advice, which I will take, thank you. Many things I had not thought of - I'm really glad I asked.

linda - about the meds - we were talking about that today and I am going to see if we can just pay for an extra month - I know the insurance company won't pay for it.

nurturingwisdom said...

My family and I have done a great deal of camping. We had a water filter attached to a hand pump. The camping supply stores may still carry such pumps.

Alpine carries a line of freeze- dried foods in cans of different sizes. All one needs to do is to add hot water to it.They're pretty good.

Lover of Life said...

nurturing - thanks - I'll pick some Alpine up and give it a try.

Lisa said...

this has given me something to think about- thank you ( i think !)

ellen abbott said...

All those suggestions are very good. Back in my river guide days I carried an extensive first aid kit and a survival kit. I would suggest that in your survival kit you have three ways to make and keep fire...matches, candles, lighter, flint striker, a can of sterno. Get waterproof matches or wrap them in foil or a watertight container. The other thing to have is one of those silver space blankets. They can be used as a ground cover, a blanket, or a device for collecting water if need be. I'm thinking of course of extreme conditions...we did most our river camping in the desert or near desert canyons. Still, you never know.

Phoebe Miriah Kirby said...

My husband, being a marine, has those dried packages of food everywhere. M.R.E.'s... I'm not sure what the acronym is. They are actually quite tasty and high in calories!
Maybe everyone should include those in emergency packs.

We do have a storm radio around here somewhere too!

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Teresa - in the Middle Side of Life said...

great post. i actually should put something together for us. our biggie will be meds, too. ron takes 21 different medications each day. no way i could get enough put aside to sustain his health in an extended emergency. i don't take as many but i do take 3 different oral medications for diabetes and blood pressure medication.

i will put this on my short list to get something put together. we do have a hand-crank radio, so that's a place to start.