Earthquake & Tornado Survivor

I attended a preparedness fair a week ago.  There was a woman who was one of the speakers, she had a display table of some of the items that she had found to be worth storing.  She mentioned that she had survived a 9.6 earthquake in California and also a tornado in Texas.  Having lived through these amazing experiences, she has quickly come to know what items are needed and essential and what is superfluous.  

There was some very enlightening information shared.  The following are some points to consider when preparing your family for an emergency or a disaster like an earthquake, hurricane, tornado, etc.  They are common sense type points that many times we just don’t think of, especially during the stress of an emergency.  It’s time to get prepared! 
  1. Your attitude will make all the difference.  We’ve all heard the terms “Go with the Flow” “Stay Cool, Calm and Collected”, but in an emergency everything changes, there are no rules except to survive.  Somehow, as the head of your household, if an emergency/disaster hits, try to follow this advice… Pull yourselftogether.  Then start pulling things together when the dust clears.  Inventory what you have left, categorize, organize and start to make-do with what you have…  Don’t panic, stop and think before you act… you have time to do these things.  Remember, in your family, YOUR attitude ISTheir attitude.  Stay calm and they will be calm.
  2. Keep Slippers by your bed!  Get in the habit of using slipper daily – slipping them on and off AT THE BED!  Why?  Because in an earthquake, for example, everything is thrown everywhere and broken glass is all over the floor.  More people are hurt from broken glass than from the quake itself.
  3. DON’T TURN OFF YOUR GAS!  Unless you have huge structural damage to your home OR if you SMELL GAS, Don’t Turn it Off!  I know we have been told to turn our gas off in an emergency, but sometimes it is not necessary.  It could take a long time for the gas to get back into your system and pilot lights lit again.
  4. Keep Water in Every Bedroom.  Water is the NO. 1 thing to store.  You can live without food for a several weeks, but only a few days without water.  So, if you are trapped in your bedroom, at least you will have water there.  There have been stories where people were rescued weeks after an earthquake, found alive because they happen to be in a room where their was water.
  5. Store water in the large liter pop bottles.  They clean up the easiest and are designed to hold liquids for a very long periods.  Stash them everywhere in your house, some in every room.  When filling, be sure to leave a couple of inches from the top for expansion.
  6. DO NOT add Chlorine Bleach to your storage water.  Chemicals in the Chlorine Bleach will turn toxic after time.  Simply fill the plastic bottles from your kitchen sink.  There is enough Chlorine in the water to keep it safe for 5 to 10 years, or more, if you don’t aerate it.  Just fill the bottles with the running water, without the bubbles from aeration.  This keeps more of the Chlorine in the water and less from dissipating because of the aerator at the end of your faucets.
  7. Always have 6 to 10 cases if bottled water on hand.  Rotate that water for water to carry with you to drink.
  8. There are never enough matches in an emergency or disaster.  Store ‘Strike Anywhere Matches’, as many boxes as you can.  Think of as much as you may need, then double the number.
  9. Store THREE months supply of food – food YOU eat – and rotate that also.  Think about Hurricane Sandy and Katrina.  Think about how nice it would be to have had food and water on hand for your family.  It took over two weeks just to get the power back on in areas stricken by both Hurricanes.  Some areas still look like bombed out zones.
  10. Make a 72 Hour Kit geared to you and your family’s needs.  Include vitamins, carbs, bulk/filling foods – store what you like to eat because you WILL get very hungry.  It is difficult to try to get children to eat something they are not used to or don’t like, regardless of how nutritious it might be and how hungry they are.
  11. Storage is NOT difficult.  Purchase a little extra when you go to the store and put a little extra away.  You won’t miss a few extra dollars here and there, as you watch your home storage grow.  The satisfaction of knowing that you can provide for your family is priceless.
  12. Buy the essentials.  Toilet paper:  Buy it by the square and buy it on sale, taking advantage of the sales when they come, which is usually every six months.  Calculate how many ‘squares’ your family uses in a day, a month, and get yourself a year’s supply.  Surprisingly, it is not that hard to do – run the numbers!  Soap:  Buy the old white Ivory hand soap, less chemicals.  Ivory Dishwashing Liquid also has less chemicals.  Ivory Dishwashing Liquid can be used to wash clothes, dishes, even babies, it is so gentle.
  13. Build your own Washing Machine:   All you need is a $3.00 5 gal. bucket from Home Depot, a Toilet Plunger from All a Dollar and Ivory Dishwashing Liquid.
  14. Recently in our area, it seemed that every store was offering a small single-burner Butane Stove.  They were everywhere and they all look the same, except for the name printed on the stoves.  They all appear to work the same way also, which is very well!  One of these Butane Stoves can be purchased for as little as $14.00 to as much as $35 depending on where you go.  The beauty of these units is first, you can use it inside them home, and second, that they put out a lot of heat and can cook something very fast.  One can of fuel will last up to 4 hours at the highest temperature.  But, because you can usually bring something to a boil very quickly, you can quickly turn it off to save fuel.  This extends the life of a can of fuel to 6 to 8 hours, or more.  They are simple to use!  When you are finished cooking the can self-seals for storage to use another day.  This is a great way to cook on cloudy days.
  15. On sunny days, the Solar Flare Parabolic Solar Cooker is what you need to prepare your meals.  You have an endless supply of fuel with the Sun – take advantage of that!  Go to www.mysolarcooker.comfor more information and details.  You will want a Solar Flare Solar Cooker to go with your Butane Stove, or whatever else you might have to cook with that uses carbon based energy.  Having a Solar Flare allows you to stretch out your fuel supplies using the Ssn to cook your meals and pasteurize your water for your family.  This way you are completely covered.
  16. You will want a quality hand-crank AM & FM radio and a quality hand-crank LED light.  Make sure you check the number of hours per charge, the higher the number of hours the better.
  17. Store Extra Batteries, all sizes that you are now using.  In a cool place good batteries will store for years.
  18. Store extra ‘anything’ when you can.  During the Great Depression money was scarce, people traded for the things they needed.  If you are wise enough to store extra things, soap, toilet paper, food items, matches, water, extra sleeping bags, batteries, lights, etc., you will have excellent bartering items.  There will be a need for almost anything and everything when a disaster strikes, the stores will be emptied in minutes and what you have on hand will be all you have for possibly several weeks.
  19. Prepare to feed an army. If you have food, people will find you.  You can’t turn away hungry people, you have to help them.  So, when you are financially able, plan for extras for your family and a sizeable number of other people seeking food and shelter.
  20. I used to think that storing a year’s supply of fuel would be next impossible.  The reality is that with the various cooking implements available today, some at very good prices, storing a year’s supply of various types of fuels can be accomplished.  Generally there are more sunny days than cloudy day across this great Country, so don’t forget your solar cooker.
What I learned most is to START!  Start preparing now for yourself and your family.  Be sure to think of others who will most likely be in need.  Start slowly spending a few dollars here and there until you acquire what you need to feel secure.   The key is jus to START!
SZ Team