Are You Prepared for an Emergency?

tree and house being blown by windNow is the time, before hurricane and tropical storm season begins in New England, to prepare your home for any unexpected emergency. Many homeowners take the threat of severe weather lightly, and see hunkering down in a storm as a fun, family adventure. It can be, but only if you are prepared for the potential loss of electricity for an extended period of time and other challenges a big storm can cause.

Smart preparation means having emergency provisions stored and ready and knowing alternate routes if roads become blocked due to downed trees.

Provisions for Storm Emergencies:

According to www.ready.gov, emergency provisions are often the hardest thing to come by when a storm strikes. Let’s face it, many people wait until the last minute, so you are vying for the exact same things, like bottled water and batteries, along with many, many others in the same situation.

Here is a basic list of things you should gather and store in a safe place in your home, just in case an emergency strikes:

  • 3-day supply of non-perishable food (dried fruit, canned tuna or chicken, peanut butter, for example)
  • Can opener
  • Paper Plates
  • Moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties for personal sanitation
  • Water- at least one gallon per person per day for consumption and personal hygiene
  • A first aid kit
  • Prescription medication and eye glasses
  • A warm blanket or sleeping bag for all family members
  • Change of clothes for at least 3 days
  • Matches in a waterproof container
  • Toothbrush (for all family members) and toothpaste, soap and other hygiene items you use
  • Feminine hygiene supplies
  • Fire extinguisher
  • Wrench or pliers to turn off water valves if needed
  • Battery powered or hand crank radio
  • Flashlight and extra batteries and candles
  • Cell phone and extra charger (look into getting a solar charger)
  • Whistle to signal for help
  • Household chlorine bleach to disinfect
  • Cash
  • A first aid book
  • Pet supplies, extra water, and canned pet food
  • Infant food and diapers (if needed)
  • Paper, pencils and pen

Make certain you have enough supplies to last at least 3 days. When a big storm is coming, fill your car up with gas before the storm hits. If you have a generator, fill extra gas cans to store (safely in the garage) to fuel the generator if needed. Try to assemble your kit well in advance of an emergency. You may have to evacuate at a moment’s notice and take essentials with you. You will probably not have time to search for the supplies you need or shop for them.

Chances are you may never need your emergency provisions, but if roads should become impassable because of storm related damage (trees, water, downed power lines), and your electricity is out for several days, having emergency supplies ready may secure your family’s comfort and safety.

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