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How to Prepare a Disaster Emergency Kit

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There are a lot of disasters and emergencies that could happen in our lifetime – it could be natural or manmade. Are you and your family prepared for any of these?

Planning for any disaster is very important. You would not want to be caught up in a situation where you will be helpless, with no resources to depend on, no Plan A or B.

Resilience is a very helpful trait, but it is not enough. Preparation is still the key to survival. If you are prepared, you become one less victim that the government or responding teams need to help. You make their lives easier, and help them attend to those who really need it.

If you’re not sure what to prepare, here are tips to having an emergency kit that fits all kinds of emergency situations.

Before going out to buy what you need to prepare, the initial information you need to know is the number of people (and pets if you have any) you will be preparing for – consider their age and requirements. You may also check out Ready.gov for a more detailed emergency kit preparation.

If you have these sorted out, you can go ahead and start buying supplies.

Water: All disaster kits list water as a necessity. This is a must because humans can survive for days without food, but never without water.

Store water for a minimum of three days. If you can afford a portable water filter, it would be much better than carrying water. As long as there is running water available, you will have water to drink.

Food: Buy and store canned goods or ready to cook foods with long expiration dates because you will never know when disaster will strike. Be sure to check them regularly as well in case they need to be replaced with newer ones.

Lighting: Flashlights are a must, as well as candles. Better yet, buy headlamps so your hands are free to do other tasks. Look for headlamps whose batteries could last for days.

Whistle: Remember that scene in the movie ‘Titanic’ when rescuers were looking for survivors? Rose survived because she was able to grab a whistle and blew it with all her might. Otherwise, she might have died, too.

Masks: Fumes, gas or smoke can fill up the air during a disaster. You can die from suffocation or inhalation. Find a mask that can filter more kinds of substances than a simple surgical mask. It can save you, and it lasts longer.

Chargers: Power would most likely be out during emergencies so solar powered chargers would come in handy. Also add rechargeable batteries to your pack. Check for ones that could be used for days. And like food, be sure to check them from time to time to prevent batteries from leaking, or avoid devices that do not work.

Medications: If you or any of your family members have special conditions, pack the medications they need. Check for product expiry before stashing them in your emergency bag. It is also good to pack paracetamols or pain relievers, alcohol, and other items for treating injuries.

Multi-Purpose Tool Kit: Include a tool that has a knife, can openers, screw drivers, pliers, etc. If you often go outdoors for camping, I’m sure you would have something like it.

Extra Clothing: Pack a shirt, a sweatshirt or jacket with a hood, and a windbreaker or raincoat.

Radio: A radio is the most portable communication you have with the outside world to keep yourself informed. A handy radio that could pick up AM or FM signals would be great.

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