Last year we had some heavy thunderstorms and flooding in our area. It was something I never thought to prepare for (dumb, I know). We were without power for about 15 hours, and I was so grateful that it wasn’t longer. But it got me thinking,
What if it had been during the winter? How would we have stayed warm?
How would I have prepared food for my family?
Here are a few things we have tried to do to be prepared in case of a future scenario that might be worse.
Be Prepared for a Power Outage
One of the first things I did was to make sure we have a 3-month supply of food in case of emergency or in case of a quarantine. We all know what happens when a disaster strikes–the food is cleared from grocery store shelves immediately. In case of a power outage, I made sure I have many shelf stable foods. I also bought a butane stove so that I can still cook indoors. I put off buying one for several months because I thought it would be an investment, but they are actually very affordable ($20-30). We have a Barbeque, but in case it’s cold outside, I wanted something I could use indoors, and something I could use my pots and pans with.
Another great thing to have is a Saratoga Jacks Thermal Cooker. All you have to do is get your food to boiling, and then the Saratoga Jacks will continue cooking your food throughout the day. It even bakes bread! The thing I like about the Saratoga Jacks Thermal Cooker is that it can be used for many other things (camping, cooking a meal while you are on a road trip so you don’t have to stop for fast food, etc.), so I know it will get used beyond just emergency purposes.
As far as the food in your fridge and freezer, avoid opening your fridge as much as possible as this will extend the life of your food. Keep ice packs frozen so that you can move some of your stuff into a cooler if you need to.
We all know that water is way more crucial than food. You should store 1 gallon of water, per person, per day. Another smart option is to get a Water Bob and fill it the moment you get a storm warning. It holds 100 gallons of water and keeps it fresh up to 12 weeks.
We bought a bunch of LED flashlights and we keep them by EVERYONE’s bed. We also have some camping lanterns that are battery operated. We also have some solar lights. Trust me, life will get really interesting if you don’t have any light.
If the power goes out and it is winter, you are going to need to stay warm somehow. Make sure you have warm sleeping bags, and some sort of heat source, whether by generator or a propane or kerosene heater that is safe for indoors. The one below has incredible ratings and automatically shuts off if it gets tipped over, the pilot light goes out, or if oxygen levels are too low.
In case of emergency, it’s also good to have an emergency radio so that you can get updates on weather and other info.
If you are just getting started on emergency preparedness, you might appreciate this article on emergency preparedness by the paycheck. It is suggested that you set aside a budget from each paycheck to get a little closer on your preparedness.
Also, I loved this idea of making comfort kits for your kids to keep them from being scared.
What have YOU done to be prepared for a power outage? I would love to hear your ideas!