Monday, August 12, 2013

Prepping for Extreme Weather

Last week, severe thunderstorms and six EF 1 and 2 tornadoes went through the area where I grew up in the middle of the night.  Through Facebook, I learned which friends and family had minor damage to trees and homes and which had homes that are probable tear downs (my husband's childhood home is half-gone).  My parents were without power or phone for 4 days and relied on their neighbor's generous sharing of his generator to keep their refrigerator and freezer running.

Many people had chainsaws, generators, and pantries with enough food to last them a few days.  A whole lot more of my news-feed was full of people who didn't have cash and therefore couldn't buy things at gas stations that had no power or people who had streets blocked and were out of milk (or whatnot) for their kids.

We just do not prepare in this country.  We are so used to just hopping in our cars and picking up items at the store and turning on the faucet and having clean water or flipping the switch and having light.  It is important that we pay attention to major disasters and learn from them so that when a summer storm blows through, we still have enough water and food to get us through at least 72 hours.

Our family's portable disaster kit.

In our basement, I keep a small Rubbermaid container with enough food, water, and other supplies to get us through 72 hours.  There are also blankets and pillows to make it as comfortable as possible.  If there were some sort of chemical spill, etc. that required us to leave with just minutes to spare, my kids know to grab this tub, along with a few other things we keep in different rooms in the house. Also, keep some cash in small bills.  If the power goes, stores can't use credit.

Each of our cars has a mini version of this tub with a blanket.  Several years ago, motorists were stranded IN THE CITY on the interstate for 12 hours in a blizzard.  If that's me, I want to have a blanket, food, water and a bucket to pee in.

It's important that if you haven't already made an emergency kit for your home and cars, that you do so.  The government cannot respond to everyone equally in a disaster and your preparedness may make a huge difference in your comfort level. 

Learn more at for what you should have on hand.