In light of the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey, I thought it might be a good idea to speak on the need to prepare for such events. It's not always the first thing on our mind, but it's important to be ready and prepare for any natural disaster that might occur.
Yes, you can't quite fully prepare for your home being completely submerged in water, but there are things you can do to prepare your family. You can stock up on certain things that would be necessary to live and remain safe. So, I want to help by making a list of things we always keep on hand.
3 Ways You Can Prepare for Any Natural Disaster
Hearing about it on TV is already too late to prepare, and after seeing the devastation that the latest hurricane delivered and the fact that many people weren't ready was crazy. Hurricanes, in particular, you should have enough time to prepare for it making a landfall.
They happen each year in the gulf, some hit the east coast and even the west coast. Instead of being ill prepared, it's best to stock up on things you're able to get your hands on.
Yes, there are some disasters you just can't predict and can hardly “plan” for, but you can try and be as proactive as possible and get a head start for some things. My husband is itching to go all out on his prepper dreams after this last hurricane and at the thought of the new one in the Gulf.
“You can never be too prepared.” He says. And, he's right.
Related Post: Why We’re Transitioning to Become Self-Sufficient
Are You Prepared for Any Natural Disaster?
A lot of times when people think about “prepping” or being a “prepper” they think of people who are on those prepper/dooms day TV shows. And, yes, there are some people out there that take things to the extreme.
But, you don't have to be that intense with your preparations. A little can go a long way in the event that you're without water, power and a way to get food.
In any scenario, the best things to prepare for is needing to provide water, food, and shelter. Anything else is an added bonus at that point.
So, we're starting our list off with something that you can purchase in bulk and then I move onto other things you can create or gather as needed.
1 Purchase 72-hour or 30-Day Emergency Food Buckets
Depending on how many people are in your family, or how much extra income you have this is the first place I would start. Even if you stocked up on all the iodine tablets in the world if you didn't have food you'd be in big trouble.
We use and love Valley Food Storage for our emergency food stash.
The idea is to have at least 72-hours worth of food per person stocked and put away for emergencies. If you want to be a little more diligent you can stock up for 30-days per person. It's always better to err on the side of caution and get more rather than less.
If you do end up with extras it can be used to help another family in need that may have been less prepared.
2 Create an Emergency Kit
An emergency kit can be as simple or as elaborate as you want it to be. Just remember that if you're having to lug it around you may want to be choosy about what goes in the kit.
Will it have wheels? Take that into consideration (and maybe consider if wheels will be functional in the terrain around you).
This right here might be a good option because it rolls, collapses, and it can be carried by handles.
Of course, what you put in it might also determine what sort of case you're going to have. My husband and I have a hiking bag like the one below that we have and use because it stores our tent and everything else (minus the stove, propane tanks, and water).
This is one of the best ways you can prepare for any natural disaster and is the reason it makes #2 on our list. Your emergency kit can look however you want it to look, but we suggest the below items.
- Water Purification Tablets (like this or this)
- Water Storage
- Propane Tank
- Camp Stove or Tripod Stand Camping Kit (lots of goodies and it's small)
- First Aid Kit (or make your own)
- Candles/Oil lamps (personal fav for childhood memory reasons)
- Flashlight & Batteries (if needed)
- Sleeping Bags
- Small Hygiene Kit (think tooth brushes, toothpaste, shampoo, bar soap, feminine hygiene stuff, and anything else you might need)
- Needle & Thread
- Extra Clothes
- Any Miscellaneous Items You Might Need
3 Plan Escape Routes & Contact Plans
On our list of things that should be planned (right after food and an emergency kit) is planning routes and your contact plan of action.
We think this is key when you are planning to prepare for any natural disaster.
That is why planning our escape routes is something we're doing. We're getting a map of our city and noting every route we could take to get out of the city if we needed to make a dash. This will help us to avoid being stuck on a highway in the event that a mass panic breaks out in the area.
If we know other routes out of the city it will help us to navigate faster and avoid traffic.
On top of that, we are planning out a “who to call” list and annotating how we'll keep them updated (provided the cell towers aren't down).
Bonus Tip: Make Plans to Save Your Animals
Don't leave your pets behind. There are many places that will usually have a place where they house displaced animals to help people who had to flee. Another way you can plan to help your animals is by getting vests for them. There are many manufacturers that make vests for dogs, and I'm almost positive that if you need one for a cat an XS vest would fit.
Check out the West Marine website when you're ready to prepare for any natural disaster so you can make sure to prepare for your pets too!
What is your preparedness level?
1 Not Prepared At All
2 I have a few things
3 We have a good bit of supplies
4 I'm just lacking a couple minor things
5 We're prepared for anything (within our abilities)