Some people go about their daily lives without thinking very much about how well they are prepared for some kind of disaster. With the relatively high number of natural disasters that have occurred recently, it is probably a wise decision to have a stock of necessary supplies to depend upon should a disastrous event occur. Next to drinking water, fuel is likely the most important necessity. Fuel is needed for cooking, heating and transportation. Gasoline is required to operate a generator in case of an interruption in electrical service, and most vehicles are fueled by gasoline. Although stocking gasoline should be done with care, it can be stored in five gallon containers.
It should be kept in a building that remains at room temperature and away from any sources of ignition. It should never be stored in the home or in an attached garage. Diesel fuel is safer to store, but propane is the safest and the easiest fuel to stock. A gas grill is a great cooking appliance, and provides a dependable way to cook meals during an emergency situation.
If there is a wood-burning stove or fireplace in the home, stocking an ample supply of well seasoned firewood is handy. It can also be used to build a campfire for cooking and staying warm if the home is damaged or destroyed. It is relatively easy to purchase and store non-perishable foods such as peanut butter, beef jerky, dried fruits, canned meats and fruit and vegetable juices.
These simple foods do not require cooking and still provide necessary nutrition and energy. Don't forget to keep a manual can opener with your canned foods in case there is no electricity.
Power outages are probably the most common result of natural disasters. Power lines are easily taken down by earthquakes, tornadoes and strong thunderstorms. A power outage means flashlights and lanterns will be needed, along with an ample backup supply of batteries. LED batteries last the longest, so they are a good choice for an emergency supply. Candles are the old standby to provide light when the power goes out, but they can be dangerous if small children are present. Although it's hard to imagine no power and no water for more than a few days, storing regular tap water in clean plastic jugs and bottles is a cheap and easy way to make sure safe drinking water is available.
A few cases of bottled water should also be added to the emergency supplies. Store a bottle of bleach in case it is necessary to purify water. Add 16 drops of bleach to a gallon of cloudy water to kill any dangerous organisms that may be present. While many disasters resulting from storms occur during warm weather, cool weather and continued precipitation can bring a chill to the air. Emergency supplies should include extra clothing for all the members of the household, as well as extra blankets and pillows. If the home has been destroyed, a camping tent can provide temporary shelter and protection from the elements.
About the Author:
Michael has been working in safety supplies and emergency kits industry for more than five years. As a product manager for EDisasterSystems, he knows his merchandise and all the requirements from OSHA. He likes to write and share his ideas about the importance of safety and emergency prevention.