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6 Emergency Preparedness Ideas for Ordinary People

So, you want to be ready in the event of a catastrophic event, but you’re not ready to go full on prepper. You don’t need to have a bunker filled with 5 years’ worth of food to be preparing for hurricane season or have what you need in case the shelves temporarily go bare. There’s no need to have a 3-year supply of toilet paper, but you don’t want to be left with your last roll when a pandemic goes down. There are plenty of ways you can get ready for emergencies without being the crazy person down the street, and here are 6 of them.

Keep 2 Weeks’ Worth of Food on Hand

Times can be tough, and sometimes you’re fighting to have just enough to eat today, without thinking about an emergency. But having canned and dried food on hand is critical for emergency preparedness. You’ll want things like canned green beans, dried beans, canned chicken, peanut butter, canned fruit, and even rice and oats in the event of an emergency. This food supply should be enough to keep your family fed in case the grocery stores aren’t open or if there is a shortage, like the toilet paper shortage we saw in 2020. Also make sure you keep things like formula and diapers on hand if you have a little one who needs them.

Keep Your Important Documents Together

Whether you need to get out quickly because a forest fire is encroaching on your property, or you’re in the path of a hurricane, you’ll want to take your important documents with you if you must leave your home. These can include birth certificates, passports, insurance documents, investment accounts, etc. Keeping them together in a spot you can easily get to in an emergency will ensure you have them when they are needed the most.

Have a Way to Purify Water

If there’s a freeze, the water can go out. If the power goes out, the water can go out. If there’s a flood, the water supply can get contaminated. It’s helpful to know how to purify water no matter what part of the country you’re in. Whether you use a filtration system or you use purification tabs, clean water is a must during an emergency. While you may have some water jugs on hand, you may run out eventually, and if there’s a chance that the supply is contaminated, it’s best not to risk it. While boiling is effective as well, filtering with a high quality emergency filter or using purification tabs helps as well.

Keep Enough Extra Medication

While most people only get a months’ supply of their medications at a time, it’s important to keep extra if possible. Life Saving medications like insulin can be hard to get in an emergency. You don’t want to get caught without it if you need it. Stash these medications somewhere safe in the event of an emergency. Other things like fever reducers and prescribed antibiotics are helpful to have on hand as well. They can help you recover from infections if the medications aren’t available in the pharmacies.

Use Paper Maps

Would you know all the back ways out of your area if the GPS wasn’t working? Having an up-to-date paper map can help you find alternate routes if the roads go out and if the cell towers in your area are out of commission. It’s useful to have a map of your city, your county and your state so you have as much detail as can fit on paper.

Have a Cash Stash

You don’t need millions hiding under the mattress, but cash speaks volumes in an emergency. If there is no electricity in an area, there are no credit card machines, meaning that if you want to buy something from a store, you will most likely need cash. It’s important to have small and large bills. Cash can also help you get the things you need and it’s easier to bargain with others if you have something tangible on hand. There is also something to be said for having some of your money stored in precious metals. Things like gold and silver are helpful to guard against inflation, but they can also be used to barter in extreme circumstances. 

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