Don’t be left in the cold without a household emergency kit
Keep your family safe, comfortable and healthy during a power outage with a home emergency kit.
With the recent natural disasters, it should be a reminder to make sure that you are ready for any emergency. In Michigan, we are susceptible to long-term power outages any time of year from wind, rain or snow. Most of the time, the power outages can be short-term, under 24 hours, but several times last year, some residents were out of power for over three days. Given that these storms can be unpredictable and unplanned, always being prepared with a household emergency kit should be an essential part of every home.
According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), they recommend preparing your emergency kit in advance. You may need to leave your home without warning or be confined to your home due to weather conditions, which may preclude your ability to assemble supplies or shop for them. FEMA provides a great resource on how to build an emergency kit. Kits should have everything you need to survive for at least 72 hours like food, water and other essential supplies. According to the FEMA Ready Kit, your kit should contain the following:
- Water, one gallon of water per person per day for at least three days
- Non-perishable food for three days (nuts, peanut butter, crackers, canned juice, ready to eat meats, fruits and vegetables)
- Battery-powered radio
- Flashlight and extra batteries
- First-aid kit
- Manual can opener for food
- Moist towelettes and garbage bags
- Pet food
- Medicine for all family members
After you prepare your kit, it is important to change your stored food and water every six months. Examine your canned foods for any signs of spoilage, dents or rust and discard if needed. Store your emergency food and kit in a cool, dry place.
Bad weather can strike when we least expect it and our homes could be without heat or electricity for several days. Being ready for an emergency can minimize the crisis and keep your family comfortable, safe and healthy until power is restored.