Showing posts with label emergency preparedness. Show all posts
Showing posts with label emergency preparedness. Show all posts

Tuesday, September 20, 2022

A Review of Emergency Preparedness - Is it Really Necessary?

 


Preparing for an emergencies, what some people call "prepping" has been laughed at for decades.  It brings to mind images of crazy people putting bunkers in their back yards and sitting on hundreds of boxes of army rations.  

However.....

What about preparing for real life emergencies that could really happen?  Floods, hurricanes, tornadoes and even terrorist attacks or rioting.  Any of them could really happen, but the most likely to happen is prolonged power outage.  The grid could go down for many reasons, and stay down for days or even weeks.  Would you be prepared if that happened?

What is  Emergency Preparedness?

Emergency Preparedness is planning for an unexpected, serious occurrence that could pose a threat to the health and wellbeing of you and your family.  It can be something as dangerous as a gas explosion, to something less dangerous, but still devastating, like a flood or a serious problem with your electrical supply.

How Can Planning Help?

Emergency planning helps to reduce the amount damage an emergency does to your life, the lives of your family and your property.   If the incident is catastrophic, planning can actually save your life.  In an emergency, people are scared, confused and in a panic about what to do and how to take care of themselves and their loved ones.  If you are prepared, it will significantly reduce your fear because you know you have a plan and the items you need to make sure you are safe and cared for during a bad situation.

How Can I Know What Kind of Emergency to Prepare For?

The simple answer is:  you can't.  You have no way of knowing what will happen, so the best thing to do is to take care of the basics that you need in any emergency situation.   

  1. Food -  Have some food that you can eat without having to cook it, even better if it does not have to be refrigerated.  Peanut butter, crackers, beef jerky, protein or granola bars, honey, cookies and things like this are easy to store and will keep you going if you are in a situation where you have no electricity and can't cook.  It is always safer to have your own food available when a bad incident occurs so you don't have to go out, which in an emergency can be dangerous.  Keep your emergency food in totes in a cool dry place and don't forget to switch it out for fresh a few times a year so it does not go out of date.  
  2. Water - Water is something most people take for granted as always being available, and therefore it is not necessary to store it.  This is not true.  Your water supply may become contaminated or your local water treatment facility could break down and stop supplying water.  The best way to be prepared for this situation is to store some water.  You can buy cases of bottled water, or 5 gallon plastic jugs that are available in most big box stores.  Having clean water to drink and wash yourself with is one of the most important things in an emegency.  Never take water for granted, it can be the difference between life and death.
  3. Shelter - The other part of having shelter is having a way to keep warm, should something happen in the winter.  Your house is normally excellent shelter, but if you lose the ability to heat it, it can be nothing but a giant refrigerator.  If this happens, find one room that is small and can be closed off and get a propane heater like Mr. Heater  that is safe to use inside the house. Bring in blankets and warm clothes and stay in that room to keep warm.  If you have a situation where you are forced to leave your house, such as a fire, flood or earthquake, you need to have a tent or tents to stay in outside, along with clothing, food and water to take with you. 
Is There Anything Else I Should Stock Up On?

There are so many things that are good to have but here are some of the most important:

  • Flashlights and batteries
  • First Aid Kit
  • Candles and the means to light them
  • Power Bank Charger to charge your cell phone
  • Knife
  • Aspirin
  • Garbage Bags
  • Sleeping Bags or Blankets
  • Heavy Socks and Hats for all family members
  • Firewood (if you are able to build a fire outside where you live)
  • Some type of weapon to defend yourself

Last Thoughts on Emergency Preparedness

These ideas are just the very basics you will need for a short term emergency, for longer term situations the list of what you would need would be much longer.  The above mentioned items are minimum of what every household should have in case of an emergency.  Having these items on hand will make you feel calmer, safer and better prepared should the worst happen.  Pick up a few items a week until you have what you need and as they say about being prepared for anything:

It is better to have it and not need it, than need it and not have it!






Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article. “As an Amazon Associate I (we) earn from qualifying purchases.”


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Monday, September 11, 2017

Emergency Preparedness: Headlamp Review

Headlamps for emergency lighting
Recent events have caused many of us to think about emergency preparedness. Hurricane Harvey only recently exited Texas and Hurricane Irma is in Florida as I am typing this. There are almost too many wildfires in the western United States to count -forcing people to evacuate their homes. Whether we are talking about emergencies as devastating as these or emergencies as small as a flat tire on the side of a dark highway, we need to be prepared. There is a list of things that need to be included in our preparations, but today I want to talk about headlamps. I believe that headlamps are a required item when talking about safety and being prepared.


What is a Headlamp?


Headlamps are battery operated, hands-free "flashlights" that attach to your head by an elasticized headband. 

Why is a headlamp important when we all probably own flashlights or candles?  I too own an assortment of candles, flashlights, and lanterns (gas, battery, and solar operated). So why do I highly recommend purchasing an additional item for emergency lighting? 


Headlamps are important and unique for the following reasons:


  • hands-free 
  • flame-free
  • safe
  • battery operated with a long battery life
  • AAA batteries are easy to keep on hand
  • headlamps are small enough to have with you everywhere 
I depend on my headlamps when I am camping at The Shack. I carry one with me in the Jeep, in the event of a break-down on the side of the road. The headlamp attaches to my head and I can use both hands for whatever I need to do. Imagine changing a tire in the dark, while trying to hold a conventional flashlight. Now imagine changing a tire in the dark, while a beam of light automatically shines on whatever you are facing. 

I love candles and always have a large selection on hand. But there are times I do not want to risk an open flame.  

Lanterns are great for lighting large areas, such as rooms, but more difficult for any activity that requires light focused on a specific area or activity. My lanterns also seem to burn through fuel or batteries very quickly.

Ladies, for many of us, headlamps initially feel silly. But if you are stranded in the dark and want to use your hands, if you need an inexpensive and reliable lighting source, or if you find yourself outside in the dark, you will very quickly become accustomed to the feeling of having a light strapped to your head. 

I have had really good luck with the Energizer brand of headlamps. The elastic band is adjustable for my big head. It is also more durable than the bands on other headlamps I've purchased. The plastic pieces on my Energizer are durable. I have broken the piece that attaches the light to the headband on an off-brand of headlamp.

I have had this Energizer headlamp for two years or so. I've changed the batteries once. And I use it for every trip up to the Shack as a primary lighting source as well as for short periods of loss of electricity in my apartment. I highly recommend that we all have immediate access to a headlamp as a part of our emergency preparedness.

Related Emergency Preparedness Reviews:


Heather shares the importance of Emergency Survival Kits (aka Bug Out Bags). In the event that you should not shelter in place, it is important to have your emergency items packed and ready to go in an instant. Heather lists the contents of a good bug out bag.

Cynthia Sylvestermouse reviews an emergency power failure light that doubles as emergency lighting that turns on automatically as soon as the power turns off and a nightlight every other evening.

Barbara Radisavljevic reviews a battery operated LED light source that she uses: the MalloMe LED lantern. She liked her lantern so much that she was sorry she hadn't bought more. Read why she recommends that particular LED lantern.




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Thursday, June 1, 2017

Prepare Your Family For Survival: A Book Review

Is your family prepared for a disaster or an emergency? If you aren't sure, don't miss Prepare Your Family for Survival. Here's a book review.

Recently I've been reading about and giving a lot of thought to emergency preparedness. Survival. Planning in case of a natural disaster or man-made emergency.

As a wife and mom, the person in the household who plans daily meals and re-stocks the pantry once or twice a week, how would I feed and otherwise care for my family if I couldn't get out to buy food?

What if the power went out and the blackout lasted for several days or even weeks. How would we cook? Would we have enough water to drink? To use in cooking? To wash with or flush the toilet?

I've asked myself, "Is our family prepared for an emergency situation?"

Is yours?

Meet Author Linda Loosli


As I sought out answers, I came across a helpful book called Prepare Your Family for Survival, written by Linda Loosli, founder of Food Storage Moms. Linda has been schooling herself (and others) for decades and she knows the topic of emergency preparation inside and out.

Linda first became interested in preparedness when she was a teenager and thrust into a situation that included a serious snowstorm, an empty pantry, and several mouths to feed. Due to extenuating circumstances, she and a cousin were put in a position of having to find food for the family. Quite a task at age 16. And, really, at any age!

Linda vowed to herself after the snowstorm disaster that when she grew up and had a family, she would see to it that they were always prepared to face an emergency, that she would always have enough food and other supplies stored, just in case. After she was married, she put her thoughts into action. She began with a garden, advanced to canning food, then eventually began reaching out to neighbors and church friends, teaching classes to help other women learn how to prepare their families, too.

Prepare Your Family For Survival by Linda Loosli, Book Review from ReviewThisReviews
Prepare Your Family For Survival
Click the book cover for a peek inside.


This is Not a Doomsday Book


Often when people think of preparing for survival, the term "doomsday" finds its way into the conversation. Linda doesn't use fear to motivate. Having lived through emergencies, she knows very well what we all should know: power outages and other unexpected scenarios can and do occur with little or no warning, anytime, anywhere. And it's up to each family to prepare. While her practical methods and advice speak mainly to women, the steps to becoming prepared to survive apply to the entire family.

What You'll Learn From The Book


Most of Prepare Your Family For Survival addresses how to prepare to brave an emergency at home, though there also is a very helpful section on "bugging out," deciding when it's best to leave your home and what to take when you do. Linda has done the math for her readers, providing lists, charts, and check-off sheets based on family size. She even includes sections on the special needs that young children and pets present.

I like that the author makes it clear that water is first and foremost when it comes to what individuals need to survive. She also writes about storing food and how to choose which food to store, emergency cooking situations, what to do when the power is out, family first aid and medical preparedness, personal hygiene, and laundry. Her advice is concise and helpful even to the point of recommending particular products that work. And since Linda has tested literally just about every survival product ever invented, she definitely knows what works and what doesn't.

Who Needs This Book


The book addresses the basics of preparedness and survival, but even those with prior experience in the field may learn a thing or two. If you're a beginner and need to finally get started storing survival essentials, this is a perfect book for you.

To me, the introduction of the book is worth its price for the peace of mind that it offers. Understanding that it's important to treat preparedness as part of a lifestyle takes the "scary and overwhelming" out of the topic. And, let's face it, many of us only think about how prepared we really are when the tornado sirens start or the first forecast of just where the next hurricane might make landfall appears on the nightly news.

Despite my well-known affinity for ebooks and my beloved Kindle, I bought this book in the paperback version. There are lots of charts and lists inside and I've been flipping back and forth through the chapters since I got my copy. In this case paper is convenient and besides, charging your tablet might not be a big priority when the power's been out for days.

Make your choice (paper or ebook) at this link. Then please come back and leave a comment to let me and other readers know what you learned from the book that you didn't already know, and how the book helped motivate you to Prepare Your Family For Survival.

~Susan Deppner
Read more of my reviews.




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Thursday, May 18, 2017

When The Grid Goes Down: A Book Review

When the Grid Goes Down by Tony Nester, reviewed by Susan Deppner, ReviewThisReviews.com
If you consider yourself a "prepper" and have both a plan and supplies to support the plan over the course of a major or long-term disaster, then you don't need to read this book or my review. You're good to go and I thank you for stopping by.

However, if you're among the two-thirds of us who don't have an emergency plan in place and have nothing more than a few extra cans of food, a bag of rice, and a case of bottled water in the pantry, then it's very important that you stop what you're doing, read the book, and start working on a survival plan for your family.

The book to which I refer is called When the Grid Goes Down: Disaster Preparations and Survival Gear for Making Your Home Self-Reliant. Its emphasis is more on developing both a plan and a mindset as you implement your plan than it is on where to buy a good bug-out bag. The latter information you can find anywhere; the former is not discussed in emergency prep books nearly as much as it should be. That's one of the reasons I liked this book so much and recommend it highly to those who tend to get overwhelmed when the subject of emergency preparedness is discussed. (What, you haven't started building your passive solar straw bale house yet??)

Author Tony Nester is a survival expert and teacher with an impressive resume, well-respected in the survival training community. He also has a good writing style and presents this important information in a way that makes sense rather than trying to scare us into buying the latest gadget, gizmo, or fad on the prepper market.

In his book the author discusses in depth six key survival priorities then encourages us to tackle those basics in a "layering" method (for example, start with your case of bottled water, then add water jugs, later add a rain barrel, and eventually learn how to purify water from surrounding ponds or springs). This method will enable our families to survive short-term first, then long-term as our plans and prep levels progress. He convincingly encourages readers to take action, step by step, to bring their plan into a workable reality. No reason to get overwhelmed if you follow this advice.

Who will take care of your family when a disaster strikes? Photo: Evacuating Louisiana after Hurricane Katrina, from FEMA/Jacinta Quesada, In the public domain.
Who will take care of your family
after a disaster?
Photo: FEMA/Jacinta Quesada
In the Public Domain
Being prepared means something different for everyone, depending on where they live, size and makeup of their family, geographic and weather considerations where they live and work, and even income, but there are important overlaps. No matter whether you're more likely to deal with the aftermath of a hurricane than a tornado, the six priorities you'll learn from Tony apply to everyone. That's why I believe every beginning to intermediate "prepper" can benefit from the information in this book. And if you're in the very beginning states of planning and prepping, that especially means you.

Whether the cause is a cyber-attack, a natural disaster, a nuclear attack, or something somewhere in between, chances become greater every day that you will be called upon by circumstances to take care of yourself and your family during a major service and power outage. Such an episode could be lengthy and certainly could alter your life in a major way, starting within hours of the event, when you least expect it. This excellent book will help you prepare.

When The Grid Goes Down by Tony Nester is available in both paperback and e-book format for your Kindle or other reading device. The book has received 4.3 stars from over 225 reviewers and is a bestseller in multiple categories on Amazon.com.






~ Susan
Read more of my reviews.




Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article. “As an Amazon Associate I (we) earn from qualifying purchases.”


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