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DIY Emergency Kits: How To Be Prepared For Anything

DIY Emergency Kits: How To Be Prepared For Anything

With The Right Tools And Resources, You Can Be Prepared For Any Emergency You Might Face. 

Emergencies can pop up seemingly out of nowhere, catching you off guard if you are unprepared. The majority of Americans have no plan for how to respond to crises, and at JUDY we are determined to make a change by providing you with the information you need to prepare yourself to keep you and your family safe. It all starts with making sure that you have the tools and resources you need to respond to an emergency. 

At JUDY, we specialize in creating ready-made, expertly crafted emergency preparedness kits to keep you prepared for anything that comes your way. Our kits are filled with practical, potentially life-saving items that cover all the bases when it comes to emergency preparedness – food, water, warmth, tools, and first aid. To keep yourself prepared for a crisis situation, you can keep one of our kits at the ready in your home, or you can assemble one yourself.

This post is all about DIY emergency kits and how to make them. With the right tools and resources, you can create your own emergency bag to protect yourself and your loved ones in the event of a crisis. In this post, we’ll walk you through the five main categories to cover when assembling your own emergency preparedness kit – food, water, warmth, tools, and first aid – and the items you need to have in each category.

Ready to get prepared for anything?

Food 

If a natural disaster or other emergency strikes, it may knock out your electricity and prevent you from accessing fresh food via the grocery store. In this type of crisis, your most reliable source of food is anything non-perishable. Non-perishable foods are shelf-stable – they don’t require refrigeration – and often can last for years without going bad.

To make sure you are as prepared as possible for an emergency, keep your home stocked with plenty of non-perishable goods and stock some lightweight, ready-to-eat, shelf-stable foods in your emergency kit.

The ideal non-perishable foods to fill your pantry with include canned goods, nuts and nut butter, jerky, and cereal. These foods can last months (some can even last years) without expiring, meaning they’ll be safe to keep stocked for long periods of time in case you need them. To make sure you are constantly prepared for whatever comes your way, routinely check how much non-perishable food you have stocked in your pantry. If you are running low, stock up the next time you visit the grocery store.

In addition to a fully-stocked pantry, you’ll need a source of non-perishable food that is easy to carry, ready to take with you if you need to quickly evacuate your home and can only take a few items with you. Some of the best options for emergency kit food are granola bars and protein bars. Lightweight, pre-packaged and non-perishable, these bars are also high in calories and often nutrient-dense. This makes them ideal for circumstances when you have minimal access to food and need a lot of calories in a small package.

Water 

To make sure you are prepared for emergencies, it is essential to keep your pantry stocked with bottled water. Bottled water can keep you and your family hydrated if a natural disaster cuts off your access to running water from the tap.

Although water bottles may have a relatively long shelf life, they can expire. Over time, a plastic water bottle starts to degrade, creating the potential for harmful chemicals to seep into the water and make it unsafe to drink. Keep an eye on the expiration dates on your water bottles to make sure they are still fresh.

Instead of carrying water bottles in your emergency kit, non-perishable water pouches are an ideal source of evacuation-ready hydration. These pouches are more compact than bottles, making them easier to store in a lightweight bag. In addition, emergency water pouches typically have a much longer shelf life than plastic water bottles.

Warmth 

Keeping yourself warm and protected from the elements is an essential aspect of emergency preparedness. Without blankets, rain gear, and other crucial supplies, you can quickly find yourself becoming overwhelmed by dire circumstances. To make sure that you and your loved ones can stay warm and dry in a crisis, keep one of each of these items stocked in your emergency kit for every member of your household:

  • Emergency blankets. These lightweight warmth preservers are made out of a high-tech heat-reflecting foil, the same material used to keep NASA spacecraft from overheating. When you drape one of these foil “space blankets” over yourself, it can help to keep heat from escaping your body, reflecting your expended body heat back at you when you need it most. One blanket per person in your household is ideal – these foil blankets are light enough and compact enough that several of them will not take up too much space in your emergency kit.
  • Ponchos. Ideal for times when severe weather comes on suddenly, a poncho is a thin plastic raincoat that is light, collapsible, and easy to store in an emergency kit. Ponchos are designed to be disposable, but they can be reused in emergencies unless they become damaged. If your poncho gets ripped or torn, you can seal it up easily with a strip of duct tape.
  • Hand warmers. These helpful tools are perfect for keeping warm when the power is out. Functioning independently of electricity, hand warmers generate lasting heat that can keep your hands from getting too cold.

Tools 

When it comes to emergency preparedness, one of the easiest factors to forget is the security of your home. A natural disaster can quickly cause severe damage to your house, making it necessary to act fast and make repairs to prevent exposure to rain, wind, and cold. These tools can come in handy in a wide variety of emergency situations, especially when your home has been damaged by severe weather.

  • Duct tape. Ideal for making quick, temporary repairs to broken windows, leaks, and other damage caused by natural disasters, duct tape is an incredibly versatile tool that you definitely want to have handy in an emergency. A roll of duct tape can be used to patch up torn garments, damaged tools, and more, on top of being a perfect resource to use for making quick repairs to your home.
  • Work gloves. If a natural disaster or other emergency leaves dangerous debris behind, you need to make sure your hands are protected before you attempt to clear them out of the way. Broken glass, wires, and other volatile objects left behind by a natural disaster can easily cause injuries if you attempt to handle them with unprotected hands. To keep yourself safe, keep a pair of work gloves in your emergency kit for handling any debris or other dangerous objects.
  • Multi-tool. When space is limited and you can only carry a few items with you, a fully-stocked toolbox is likely out of the question. However, you can still get the functionality of many of the most important tools in your toolbox in the form of a small, lightweight multi-tool. 

    A multi-tool is similar to a swiss army knife, featuring a wide array of retractable utilities, including a screwdriver, knife, saw, and more. Each of the functions of a multi-tool can serve specific purposes in helping you recover from a natural disaster or another emergency.

First Aid

Treating injuries and keeping yourself and others safe and healthy are key aspects of emergency preparedness. When assembling your own emergency response kit, make sure you are stocked up on these crucial first aid and hygiene supplies:

  • First aid kit. No survival gear is complete without a well-stocked first aid kit. Your box of first aid supplies should include everything you need to treat minor injuries, including gauze, medical shears, antibiotic ointment, and more. Cuts, scrapes, bumps, bruises, and burns are all common injuries that come as a result of a natural disaster or another form of emergency, and your first aid supplies can save a life in the midst of a crisis. 
  • Hand sanitizer. Because many emergency situations will cut off your access to soap and water, using hand sanitizer is the ideal way to keep your hands germ-free in a crisis. A bottle of hand sanitizer can be used after you do your business, before administering first aid, before eating, or any time you have touched a high-touch surface such as a door handle or faucet. Hand sanitizer is an especially important resource to keep handy in the midst of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Masks. Not only can they provide protection from dust and debris, but N95-style masks can also help keep you and your family safe from germs. To reduce the risk of getting sick during a crisis situation, pack masks in your emergency kit for each member of your household.

Sources:

https://www.hhs.gov/civil-rights/for-individuals/special-topics/emergency-preparedness/index.html

https://www.dol.gov/agencies/odep/program-areas/employment-supports/emergency-preparedness

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5594396/

If you have additional questions, send them our way!

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