Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Prepping Challenges 31 Thru 40--Grab and Go

In honor of Hurricane Harvey, today's challenges will be aptly termed 'grab and go'...

#31--You have a fully stocked bug out bag which is easily accessible and always ready to go.  If you had to leave your home, shelter elsewhere, and possibly not have a home left when you returned, what would you need to take?  A change of clothes, some food and water, some sort of emergency shelter, important documents...there are numerous lists online to help you determine what to pack.

#32--All of your important documents are up-to-date, in one place, and backed up.  You have your passport, driver's license, Will, Power of Attorney, bank records, and other important documents. ready to grab before you evacuate.  You also have all of these documents digitally backed up and off-site, along with a back up of all of your computer files.

#33--You keep all of your portable electronics (cell phone, tablet, laptop) charged and located in one place when not being used so they will be easy to pick up as you are exiting your home.  Don't forget to have a battery pack or two (fully charged) to take as well for emergency gadget charging.

#34--You have an evacuation plan.  You know several evacuation routes from your home and work, you have pre-planned places to evacuate to, and you have memorized (and practiced) your evacuation checklist.

#35--You have several forms of cash on hand at all time.  You always carry cash in your wallet, you have cash in a hidden home safe, and you have other currencies in your safe as well (Euros, Yen, etc).  You have several debit and credit cards (from different financial institutions), some gold and silver, and other barterable items on hand as well.

#36--You keep informed of developing situations via radio, TV, internet, social media, and cell phone alerts.  No one has to tell you a hurricane or wildfire is heading your way as you have been tracking it since its inception.  With this knowledge you know if you need to evacuate and you do so before your entire city decides to do the same.

#37--Your vehicle (actually assortment of vehicles) are ready to evacuate you at any moment (more on this tomorrow).

#38--You have options for where to go if you must evacuate your home.  You can easily transport yourself and your family AND resettle yourself and your family (either temporarily or permanently) at one of several pre-planned locations across your city, across your state, across the country, or across the world.

#39--You have a robust communications plan which can be used before, during, and after a disaster.  You can quickly gather your family during a disaster, you have a long distance contact that can act as a hub for communication between yourself and your loved ones (local phone service may not work but you may be able to contact someone far away), you know which websites you can use to check in as safe (and your loved ones know to monitor these sites as well), you have people you can call for assistance evacuating if needed (or for bringing supplies to you if needed/possible).  You also have all necessary contact information, from family member's phone and email to insurance company contacts to FEMA contacts to emergency shelter locations, saved as both written copy and on your laptop and cell phone.

#40--You know when to stay put.  This is often an educated guess as situations can turn out to be much less intense than predicted or much worse.  Your first option, if possible, should be to shelter in place however there are many situations (wildfire, hurricane, flood, chemical leak) that will require evacuation for survival.  You have studied this topic and evaluated the current situation and make good, educated choices to ensure your family's safety.

More information on evacuating can be found here, here, and here.

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