Disasters are serious disturbance or problem that can occur in a community and affect the lives of the people. It can cause a widespread impact on the environment and the economy which could lead to serious problems soon.
Researchers have been spending their time studying all about disasters. The general notion on disasters is they are human-made. They believe that disasters are caused by failure to introduce proper measures on disaster management.
Disasters or hazards are divided into human-made and natural disasters. Although, there are complex disasters common in developing countries that may result to secondary disasters.
Examples of natural disasters are earthquakes, landslides, hurricanes, floods, tornadoes, tsunamis, and others. Meanwhile, the examples of man-made disasters are stampedes, accidents, fires, oil spills, nuclear explosions, terrorist attacks, and others.
Both types of incidents can cause loss of life and property. Thus, countries all around the world are spending millions of money to reduce the risk and prevent death.
During these incidents, the government cannot respond to each of its constituents immediately. Thus as homeowners, it is our responsibility to prepare our family from tragedies like this. In this article, we will discuss methods on how to be prepared for disasters and emergencies. Check it out here:
Prepare Water for Disasters
Whenever a disaster strike, help would be sometimes difficult to arrive. The rescue team would be responding to multiples families especially if the disaster affected a large community.
Thus, it is best to store water inside your home for your family. Learn basic skills such as water purification to help you gain the nutrients your body needs and help you have a calm mind during tragedies.
Here are some ways on how to get ready drinking water during disasters:
- Before a disaster hits, build an adequate amount of drinking water in your home. You can do this slowly. Dedicate a portion of your earnings on water bottles. According to Kelly the Kitchen Kop, store 1 gallon per person a day that can last for many days. Stock water as if no one is going to help you.
- Store water bottles in a cool dry and dark place in your home to keep it fresh. You can store it in your pantry or garage. Make sure that there is no direct sunlight to avoid reaction of water in the bottles. Check as well the details of water bottles you buy so you’ll determine if it’s safe for your family or not. Determine its expiration date (yes, water bottles have expiration dates too) so you can consume it immediately.
In some cases, the stored water in your home might not be enough for your family. Thus, it is best to know techniques on how to make your tap water a safe source for drinking. Here are some of the ways to do it:
- Learn how to boil your water since it is the easiest and safest way to make hard water safe for drinking. Put the water in a kettle and let it boil for few minutes.
- Invest in Alexapure Pro Water Filter. This product can remove impurities of up to 99.99% and it is affordable than other brands. It can be able to remove bacteria, viruses, chlorine, lead, e-Coli, and other chemicals in your drinking water. The Alexapure pro filter can accommodate up to 5,000 gallons of water. The flow rate and the filter capacity can be adjusted and it can add up to 4 filters. It is powered by gravity and it doesn’t require extra power to function. It can filter water from the direct water source such as the faucet, water well, lake, river, and streams. You can use it daily inside our homes and even during emergencies.
- Another filter to try is the Big Berkey BK4X2 Countertop Water Filter System with 2 Black Berkey Elements and 2 Fluoride Filters and Propur Big with 2 ProOne G2.0 7″ Filter Elements.
- Try to invest in a WaterBob too. The WaterBob is disposable and it can hold up to 100 gallons of fresh water. It can be easily attached to faucets and transform your bathtub to a source of safe water. It is approved by FDA and it is BPA-free. Finally, it can keep the water for 12 weeks.
Store Food for Emergencies
During disasters, food supply can easily deplete so make sure that you have the food supply for at least 3 days. Buy food that has a long storage life and does not require cooking at all. You can have the MREs or Meals Ready to Eat. Try as well the Numana Emergency Survival Food and Legacy Premium food products.
The Legacy Premium Emergency food offers products in Mylar pouches that can last for up to 25 years. It doesn’t require extensive kitchen preparation and you just need to pour water on it.
Emergency survival food also comes in complete meals for several days plus condiments, disposable utensils, and flameless heater. It also comes in various meals which each member of the family will enjoy.
Apart from MREs, store canned foods too like the Eden Organic products. Choose canned good that is easy to open and has long shelf life.
Next, keep in mind that the food you store must be in accordance with your dietary restrictions. For example, choose meals that are allergen free if you have allergic reactions on food packages. Research this first on the manufacturer’s website before buying. You can try the Wise Food Storage products since it is gluten-free.
Check the expiration dates of the foods you buy such as the dry mixes and canned foods. If you can, label all the food products you have to be guided properly. Store the food items in a cool, dry, and dark place so you can make it fresh for longer days. Be sure to keep it away from petroleum products to prevent absorption of the smell.
Categorize the food items and seal it in waterproof and tight containers to protect it from insects and rodents. Put the containers in shelves in your pantry.
Buy Over-the-Counter (OTC) Medicines
Accessing the pharmacies during disasters could be challenging, thus it is highly recommended to stack your medicines inside your home. If you have chronic ailments, buy your maintenance medicines according to doctor’s prescriptions and keep it in a safe storage area.
Even if you’re healthy, there is still a high risk of having a disease during a tragedy such as fever, stomach aches, infections, allergies, and others.
Here are some of the essential over-the-counter medicines that you should get ready whenever a disaster strike:
- Vitamins such as Vitamin C, Vitamin B, and Magnesium
- Vitamins can boost one’s strength, improve performance, and beat stress caused by disasters.
- Aspirin-Helps reduce swelling and pain in the body.
- Antihistamines-It can help reduce itching, sneezing, watery eyes, and runny nose.
- A cough control-Prevents a cough and lighten its symptoms.
- Laxatives or fiber supplements work just like how fiber does in our food. It can decrease the surface tension of stools, let it absorb more water, and becomes softer and easier to exit in the body.
- Saline solution-Cleanse wounds and help clean the nose to get rid of allergies.
- Painkillers-Manage pain such as a headache, toothache, and stomachache.
These over the counter medicines must be stored out of reach of children. Keep it in a cool, dry place to prevent it from losing its effectiveness. Avoid putting them in bathrooms because it can get humid and hot.
Replenish First Aid Kit
Apart from medicines, replenish the items in your First Aid Kit. Fill it with bandages, tweezers, thermometer, plasters, band-aids, antibiotic creams, gauze dressings, safety pins, gloves, wipes, alcohol, and cotton balls. Put these items inside a drop-proof and water-resistant bags and store it in places where it can be reached easily when needed.
Make sure that the items in the first aid kit are still within their use-by dates.
Someone might get injured during disasters and the road to the nearest hospital might be inaccessible. With this, first aid kit will be very helpful for survival. It can reduce the severity of infection and an injury.
Check Temporary Power Source
During disasters, electricity may be cut. This is a big issue since modern homes nowadays rely heavily on electricity to fulfill tasks inside the house.
However, there are products such as fuel and fuelless generators that can store electricity. Fuel generators are portable generators that use fuel to produce electricity. Meanwhile, fuelless generators have batteries that harvest its power from a wall outlet or solar panels to produce electricity. Some of the popular brands of solar generators are Humless, Lion Energy, and SolarPod Pro.
Ready Emergency Lights
Meanwhile, to deal with dark nights during power outages, you’ll have to produce matches and lights. Here are some of the tips on how to do it:
- Put together the flashlights and batteries. Keep them in a place where you can easily access it. Make sure the bulbs are working too. Glowsticks are useful as well and your kids will enjoy using it.
- Prepare candles and matches too because this may be very useful when electricity is out.
- If you want to invest on serious emergency lighting source, you can install a plug-in emergency light just like in schools, offices, and other commercial establishments. It can be installed on existing light models or electrical sockets. It is run by batteries and work from the grid when the batteries are not used. However, these are great for short-term emergencies only since it needed to be plugged in for recharging.
- Apart from emergency lighting source, try as well the rechargeable solar lights in your home. It is great for outdoor lighting and emergency situations. It can be charged through solar energy and provide lighting.
These are some of the products you can use to have a good light source during tragedies. Keep a variety of all of them inside your house. Sometimes, you can’t rely on a single item to give you light, especially if the power outage will take several days or weeks.
Don’t forget Miscellaneous items
There are various things to prepare when disasters come. Sometimes, we forgot to consider these items because we focus on food, water, and lighting source. Here are some of it:
- Assemble personal documents such as birth certificate, passport, driver’s license, insurance policies, checks, and proof of lease. Keep them in a case or waterproof envelope or water-resistant plastic bags. These documents are important and you don’t want it to go missing during and after disasters.
- Cash. Make sure you have at least $50 on hand and few coins because ATMs won’t work without electricity during calamities. Coins will come in handy if you wish to use a payphone booth in your area.
- Sanitary products such as toilet paper, soap, toothbrush, toothpaste, shampoo, deodorant, moisturizers, napkin (for women) and others. We still need to maintain proper hygiene even during the storm.
- Clean clothes like shirt, pants, and underwear. Fix and get ready as well some socks, shoes, slippers, and hats because you also need to protect your head and feet.
- Emergency blanket, tent, tarps, or sleeping bag. You’ll never know what could possibly happen to your house so better be ready.
- Phone charger and of course your phone. During tragedies, you need to get in touch with authorities and your relatives for immediate help. However, when the signal is down, a battery-powered AM/FM radio will be very useful to listen to updates in your area.
In sum, life is precious and proper preparation can save lives. On the other hand, everyone’s situation is different so you need to adapt the list above-mentioned to your own circumstances plus the kind of calamities that might possibly occur in your area.
Apart from preparing a disaster preparedness kit, it is also recommended to create an emergency plan together with the family. It is also important to educate your family about the various types of disasters that might hit your area so everyone is educated. Have one member of the family learn the basics of first aid such as CPR/ AED. Learn some of the essential skills for survival like creating a fire without any matches and using knives and other tools safely.
Be ready in a simple yet complete way. Do only the essential things without going exaggerated. For example, don’t overbuy items that are ecologically unsound.
There’s more to preparing the family for a disaster than the list in this article but hopefully, this will inspire you to prepare immediately.