In getting ready for National Emergency Prep Month (Sept), I was re-reading the information puts out. For basic info, it's pretty good, BUT it's basic and some things should be tweaked and expanded upon.

Two examples:

(1) Every checklist they have says you should have a 'first aid kit'. True enough, but don't scrimp here. A few band aids and expired towelette packets in that kit you bought at a big box store 10 years ago isn't what you need.

During an emergency, YOU are your own first responder and you might be the only medical help available for many hours or days. Make sure your medical/first aid kit has those basic items for minor issues, but also things like tourniquets and bandages designed for heavy bleeding. Also, if someone has special needs, plan for that in extra meds and supplies as they need. It is critical you have ALL your family members medical histories on hand. If there is no power and you have to take someone to the hospital, doctors won't know their history and that can lead to horrific results. Be sure you know how to use a splint and can give CPR. Take a class.  Many are free from the Red Cross and most areas have businesses with great trauma and first aid classes available. Do your kids know what to do?

Does it really matter? Someone you care about might well be depending on you to save their life. My life was saved a few years ago because a family member knew what to do when a tortilla chip attacked me. At that moment, for me, that was as great an emergency as a nationwide disaster.

(2) Food and water: checklists still show 1 gallon of water per day per person for sanitation and drinking and 3 days of food. That's not enough.

You can be without water for many days and less than a gallon for drinking isn't enough. You must stay hydrated and if its summer and it's hot with no power and AC, it's not enough. If you need water to cook your emergency rations, figure how much you'll need for that. Plan for at least two weeks, a month is better, without being able to shop for food. After many hurricanes, major earthquakes, too, stores are closed for weeks until resupply can come to all areas. Also, many people will be out of work with no pay as businesses close and try to recover. You'll need enough food to cover that period until paychecks resume as well.

Bottom line: Prepare now. Tailor that plan for your individual needs. An emergency isn't going to wait on you.

We can help.


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