Disaster Survival Kits and You
Getting the job done right is often a matter of having the right tools – and, of course, knowing how to use them properly. When the job in question is surviving a disaster, and getting it done right means coming out of the emergency alive, then having the right tools for the job is obviously much more urgent for you, your family, your pets, and anyone else who might be dependent on you.
This is where the disaster survival kit comes in. The odds of your being involved in a disaster situation on any given day are small, but if a disaster does strike, then often, literally the only resources available to you are the tools and items in your disaster survival kit. If you don’t have one, you may end nearly helpless to affect your fate and might easily die even if you’ve survived the initial catastrophe completely unharmed.
You owe it yourself and to your family to prepare for a disaster – for an unexpected event that totally disrupts the familiar infrastructure you depend on for days, weeks, sometimes even months. Remember, first and foremost, that unexpected does not mean unlikely or impossible. It’s exactly because disasters are totally unexpected and can potentially happen at any time that you should prepare for them long before there is any sign of one – if you wait until you have concrete proof that a disaster is occurring, it will be far, far too late to get the things you need to survive.
Disaster survival kits are usually fairly large and are meant to be stored in the home. Car survival kits are much smaller and omit many of the items found in a home disaster kit. A home disaster kit needs to be comprehensive enough both to keep you, your family, and your pets alive for some time, and to give you options about how to deal with the situation (remain in place, abandon the area, attempt to summon help, etc.).
You need a good, secure place to store your home survival kit. Of course, the amount of space you have available will determine how large a kit you can build, as does your budget. The budget can be increased over time, but storage space is usually fixed. You won’t be able to have as big a kit in a one-room efficiency apartment as in an eleven-room McMansion. As such, you need to find a dry interior location so that moisture doesn’t spoil any of your equipment.
The cellar, full of dampness, mildew, and the occasional mouse infestation, is one of the worst spots unless you take special precautions to set it up properly, which is time-consuming and expensive. A closet or the unused corner of a room are both good spots to place your emergency kit. Don’t just dump the items in – try to organize them, using racks or shelves if necessary, so that you can reach the item you need without needing to toss all else out on the floor.