Be Prepared: How to Be Ready for a Storm Emergency

Summer is the season for warm temperatures and sunshine, but it also means the potential for severe storms. Missouri is in the middle of Tornado Alley, and that means we always need to be prepared for a storm to strike. I’ve survived three tornados in my lifetime, and the key to getting through it is preparation.

1. Flashlight
One of the first things to go during a severe storm is the power. A good flashlight is an important tool for maneuvering to safety once a storm hits. You should choose a large light like the MAG Instrument Maglite 4D-Cell Heavy Duty Flashlight and keep extra batteries nearby.

2. Water
During a big storm, water could become unavailable due to main breaks or contamination. Make sure your kit has enough water to last 3 to 5 days for each person in your home. I fill up every water bottle I can find when a potential storm is in the forecast. That way, I have plenty of fresh water in case of a disaster.

3. Clothing
You should pack your storm kit like you would a carry-on bag. It should include all the clothing you would need for 3 to 5 days: two comfortable outfits, socks, pajamas and plenty of undergarments.

4. Essentials
If possible, include small toiletry essentials like deodorant, a hair brush, a toothbrush and toothpaste. You can even go the extra mile and pack mini-shampoos and some makeup basics.

5. Shoes
Let’s face it, if your house was destroyed, you don’t want your only shoes for a while to be your snowman slippers. Always prepare for the worst case scenario and put durable tennis shoes or boots with your supplies. If possible, include an extra pair of shoes in your pack.

6. Blanket
In a tornadic situation, the roof can be pulled right off your home. When taking cover, use a blanket to cover as much as your body as possible, focusing on the neck and head. The blanket can help keep small debris from puncturing your skin or damaging your eyes. Also, a pillow is also a good option to use to cover your head, in case of falling debris.

7. First-Aid Kit
A first-aid kit is extremely important if anything goes wrong. Even if you’re not directly affected, others around you could need help. A fully stocked first-aid kit should include bandages, gauze, sterilizing wipes, a needle and any other items you can fit. You can stock your own in a makeup bag or buy pre-made ones from any drugstore. This one fits the bill: Johnson's All Purpose First Aid Kit.

8. Radio
The best way for you to keep tabs on the situation around you is a radio. Make sure it is tuned to a local station, so you can hear weather updates as soon as possible. Also check that you have extra batteries for however long you need it.

Depending on your situation, you may choose to add or skip items for your safety kit. Just make sure to prepare your safety kit before you need it and keep it somewhere you can get to it quickly. I keep mine at the top of my basement stairs, that way I won’t forget it.

By: Candace Rosen | Image: Source


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