Saturday, November 14, 2009

Emergency Pack

The world is getting more unpredictable all the time! Some call it exciting. Some call it scary. Natural disasters are not so natural any more. They are increasingly more unexpected, frequent, severe and unusual all the time. It's easy to see that the earth is angry and biblical prophecy is being fulfilled all around us. People and politics are going crazy, terrorists are terrorizing, health is declining and the economy is crumbling!

Whew! That's a lot to deal with! But let's look on the bright side - I believe there always is one. We have our families and our friends. We can support each other and be better prepared to help ourselves and others in whatever situation we might face. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which I belong to, has been teaching us preparedness principles for 60 years. Things like storing extra food and supplies and keeping extra cash available. Self-reliant people are free people. Dependent people are easily controlled.

The first, most basic step to preparedness is to assemble an emergency pack. It's exciting to see how many people are starting to keep these on hand. They are often referred to as a 72-Hour Kit or a Grab and Go Bag. We've kept one on hand for each member of our family for about 20 years. We haven't needed it yet, but it sure brings peace of mind to know it's there if we do. Many members of our church who were caught in the crisis of Hurricane Katrina, told how their kits were all they had for themselves and to help others until they could get more help.

The pack should contain anything you think you would need to survive, at the very least, or to be as comfortable as possible for several days. Preferably, it is all in a pack you can pick up and carry if you have to take it with you. We keep 3 days worth of food and a change of clothing that we have rotated and updated each year, to keep food fresh and growing kids provided for. My October 5th post called Brainstorming With Perspective will help you evaluate the things you will want to pack based on what situations might occur for you. Here's a list of ideas. You probably won't want them all, and might have other needs that aren't listed, but this will help you get started:
  • Food and Water
  • Change of Clothing
  • Rain Coat/Poncho
  • Blanket &/or Radiant Emergency Heat Blanket
  • Backpacking tent
  • Plastic sheet
  • Flashlight or Headlamp with batteries plus extras
  • Candles
  • Lighter and waterproof matches
  • Flares
  • Can opener
  • Dishes and Utensils
  • Radio with hand crank or batteries
  • Folding shovel
  • Pocket Knife
  • Hatchet
  • Rope
  • Duct Tape
  • First Aid Supplies
  • Toilet Paper
  • Personal Hygiene items
  • Pen and Paper
  • Medications
  • Soap for body, hair, dishes
  • Cloth, small towel, bandana
  • Hat
  • Cash - coins for vending machines
  • Copies of important documents
  • Garbage bags
  • Fishing gear
  • Sewing Kit
  • Compass
  • Mirror
  • Any special needs for infants and small children, elderly, handicapped, etc.
Put the things that need to stay dry in ZipLock bags. I'd recommend that once a year, or more often if needed, you update any clothes or food that needs to be rotated, and have a drill. Whether you are alone or with a family or roomates, make sure everyone knows exactly where the packs are, who carries what, where to go if you have to leave the house, and where to meet if you are separated.

An hour or two to prepare could save your life, or someone else's in an unexpected crisis. Let's not put off simple things that could make such a big difference. Because Preparedness is Peace of Mind!


  1. Thank you. I have been wanting to put a kit together for a long time and now I have a very good list of everything I need and I can get started. Thanks again.

  2. Thanks Jessica! I'm excited for you to get started! When I had little ones, I had a pack with diapers, formula, a few toys, etc. for them.



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