Hurricane Irene: Safety Tips and Storm Guide

For all our friends on the east coast preparing for Hurricane Irene’s landfall later this week.  This is a joint tropical storm guide by FEMA, the Red Cross and the NOAA on how to prepare for a tropical storm.  It offers great ideas on getting your home ready to weather a storm and what to set aside in case of an emergency.

Hurricane Irene fueling for landfall

Hurricane Irene fueling for landfall

Powerful Photos from Japan Earthquake and Tsunami

In the aftermath of an 8.9 earthquake that devastated Japan, unbelievable images have surfaced from this terrible tragedy.  Even though the earthquake was the most powerful one on record in Japan, it was the subsequent tsunami that took the most lives and destroyed the most property.  These photos demonstrate the power and ferocity of this heart-wrenching calamity.

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Tsunami Vehicle Graveyard
source: Flickr

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Earthquake Center Divider
source: Flickr

japan-tsunami-debris-trash-boat

Sea of Clutter
source: Flickr

japan-tsunami-house-fire-floating

Fire on Water
source: AP

japan-tsunami-containers

Not Contained
source: Flickr

11 Easy Tips For Family Emergency Supplies

Happy 2011!  At the start of this new year, consider these 11 easy ways you can prepare your family for an emergency:

  1. Know Your Risks
    Plan for the disasters that are most common where you live. Maybe it’s a snowstorm over a hurricane or an earthquake instead of a tornado.  Know your area and don’t forget about flood preparation – the most prevalent natural disaster in the U.S.
  2. Plan Ahead
    With focused and strategic shopping, you are more likely to get exactly what you need and save money. Prices can skyrocket before a hurricane, wildfire or other imminent emergency.
  3. Budget For Preparedness
    Consider emergency supplies as a standard expense. Even $20 a month can go a long way to help you be ready. Simply buy one preparedness item each time you go to the store.
  4. Personalize Your Kit
    You may not need everything included in ready-made 72-hour kits and there may be extra items you require based on your family situation. Don’t forget personal medication and pets.
  5. Check and Test Regularly
    Don’t just replace your kit items annually, consider cycling through items that have a shelf life (food, batteries, etc.). As with smoke alarms, test your radio and flashlights at least once a year to make sure they are in good working order.
  6. Store Your Own Water
    Forget about buying expensive bottled water.  They can be handy for short-term needs, but not for long-term survival purposes.  Store your own water in large, safe, disinfected containers.
  7. Get Practical With Gifts
    Give and request emergency kits and supplies as gifts for birthdays, anniversaries or Christmas. What if your friends and family gave you gifts that could save your life? Don’t forget to help them by sending emergency gifts their way, too.
  8. Manage Your Coverage
    Review your insurance policies annually and make any necessary changes. When emergencies strike, you want to be confident your coverage will help you sufficiently recover. Renters should also have policies to cover personal property.
  9. Prepare To Communicate
    Keep your contact records current. Maintain an accurate list of emergency contact numbers, family, friends and neighbors.  Consider buying short wave radios to communicate when cell phone towers go out.
  10. Get Creative With Expenses
    Trade one night out to fund a 72-hour kit. A nice dinner, a movie, and a babysitter will often cost between $70-$100.
  11. Cover Your Bases
    Don’t forget to have kits and supplies in your car and at work.  The average American spends more than two hours per day in the car and many more at work.

Preparedness = Peace
If you’ve made it this far, you’re probably already well on your way to being prepared.  Remember, the more you prepare, the less there is to fear.

Free Shipping on a Practical Family Gift for Christmas

Christmas and the holiday season are upon us. Through December 18th, we’re offering FREE SHIPPING* on all survival kits and supplies.

We may be biased, but practical gift-giving is a popular topic in a down economy.  Our family emergency survival kits make a great gift.  It’s the gift everyone needs (whether they acknowledge it or not), but very few want to spend the money or time.  So we say, consider the gift of peace-of-mind for your family, loved ones, and close friends.

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We have a selection of 14 ready-to-go survival kits to fit any family situation.  If you prefer to take the time to create your own kit, we sell emergency supplies independently, along with empty backpacks and bags with the inscription “survival kit” on the front.

Our primary goal is to help you and your family easily and inexpensively prepare for any emergency. Please stop by our survival supply shop and have a safe and enjoyable holiday season!

*requires a minimum purchase of only $50

Safety At School In An Emergency – Get A Kit and Make A Plan

Back to school.  You shop for new clothes and school supplies for your kids.  You make arrangements for them to safely travel to and from school each day.  You worry that they’ll fit in, make and keep good friends, and stay safe while you’re away from them each day.

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Safety at school is important. And most schools take it very seriously.  Most schools require you to fill out an emergency contact card to help them account for your child(ren) and react appropriately after a natural disaster or emergency.  They prepare and conduct emergency drills with your kids.  Most importantly, they stock emergency preparedness supplies and/or require your child to bring a school emergency kit.

But, what they can’t do for you is prepare a family plan.  While many schools have strict rules to managing a crisis, history has told us that in major disasters, mayhem takes over.  Communication can be spotty or non-existent.  Cell towers are toppled or overloaded.  Even trusty text messaging can fail.

A good family plan starts with at least two meeting places:

  1. Pick a simple obvious location at or near the school.
  2. Then, determine a backup location in case the school is inaccessible, too dangerous, or in complete disarray.  Select a nearby park or a shopping center parking lot – an area free from buildings and distractions.

Everyone’s circumstances vary.  How many kids you have, where you live and many other factors will affect your plan.  What matters most is that you think it through and communicate it ahead of time to your family.  “If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail.” (Benjamin Franklin).  Happy planning.