Most of us are fortunate enough to go through life without experiencing any real emergencies or brushes with disaster. For most, a very occasional power-outage of a few hours is about as bad as it gets.
But nobody is immune from experiencing far worse. No matter where you live, there’s always the possibility that you’ll experience some form of disaster or some type of emergency. It might be a natural disaster or man-made, but though the risk is real, few of us are prepared for the possibility.
It’s something we’d just as soon not think about much.
But according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), you can do a lot to prepare for a worst-case scenario by assembling and maintaining a basic emergency kit in your home.
The Essentials of a Basic Emergency Kit
Visit FEMA’s site for a detailed list of what you should include in your emergency kit. But in a nutshell, a basic emergency kit should contain essentials such as:
- Food supplies (FEMA recommends a 3-day supply of non-perishable foods)
- Water: one gallon per day per person for 3 days
- Flashlight and batteries
- First aid kit
- Plastic sheeting and duct tape (for use in constructing temporary shelters)
- Basic tools such as wrenches and pliers
- Cell phone and solar charger
- Medications (both prescription and over-the-counter)
- Sleeping bags and blankets
- Extra clothing and shoes
- Chlorine bleach (can be used to disinfect water)
- Fire extinguisher
With Luck, You’ll Never Need It…
After assembling your household emergency kit, the odds are good that you’ll never need it.
But just consider it a form of insurance. After all, we purchase many forms of insurance that we hope to never need. But when the worst occurs and you do need that auto insurance, or homeowners insurance, or health insurance – it sure is good to have it. And in the meantime, just knowing that you’re prepared offers priceless peace-of-mind.
Your household emergency kit will offer all the same benefits.
Hopefully you’ll never need it. But you’ll enjoy some peace-of-mind just knowing that it’s available. And should the worst occur, your emergency kit could very well spell the difference between life and death.