September is National Preparedness Month, so are you prepared? Prepared for what, you might ask? Problem is, with how unpredictable the weather has been all over the US and all over the world the past few years, and depending on where you live, it could be a hurricane, flood, earthquake, forest fire or any extreme weather resulting in a power outage over a long period of time.
We’re prone to power outages in my neighborhood, and let me tell you how extremely annoying and inconvenient it is! We now have a large container full or emergency-related supplies, with batteries, flashlights, first-aid kit, etc. plus a couple of good lanterns and several gallons of water. If the list of items feels overwhelming to you, instead of running out at the last minute (when everyone else is out) and facing empty shelves, start building your preparedness kit now. You can purchase a ready made kit at an online store like the one pictured below, or simply make your own kit over time.
To help you to keep track of what you will need to stock up on, print the following checklist here for the “Ready to Go” and “Ready to Stay” kits (PDF file). Included are 2 kits recommended by the Home Safety Council. One is a regular kit if you’re staying put (Ready to Stay), and the other is if you need to evacuate (Ready to Go). You probably already have some of the items listed, and the remainder can be purchased a little at a time, or all at once, depending on your time and budget. You can also follow the instructions for a Basic Emergency Supply Kit at Ready.gov.
Can’t be bothered to make your own? Here are 2 evacuation-ready kits I found on Amazon for one person, and for a 4 person household. Search online for similar kits at a variety of online stores.
1. Ready America 1 person grab n go kit evacuation kit
2. Four Person Standard Backpack Survival kit
Whatever you decide, plan to do something. Even if you just start with a lantern, some batteries and bottled water – just pick up a few extra items each time you visit the store. At the end of the day, our hope is that we never ever have to use them!