Pins on Pinterest: Emergency preparedness on the mind

September 20, 2018

Living on the east bench of Santaquin, emergency preparedness and evacuation plans have been at the top of my mind over the last few days as we’ve all witnessed and even been directly impacted by the recent evacuation areas of Elk Ridge and Woodland Hills.

With flames licking the top of Dry Mountain above my home, I have mentally been preparing for the possibility of bugging out to escape possible danger.

Whether it is fire, flooding, earthquake or hurricanes and tornadoes, we should always be prepared for natural disaster. Admittedly, my family is not as prepared as I am comfortable with, so it’s time to research some ideas for emergency prepping. From important documents to basic living needs to protecting our pet, here are some tips. For more, visit our Emergency Prep board on Pinterest.

Important documents

With passports in one drawer, Social Security cards in another and mortgage, vehicle titles and birth certificates in one file box and tax documents in our office file cabinet, it’s time to get all those vital documents gathered and organized in one easy-to-grab binder or a fire-proof lock box. A nice three-ring binder, filled with protective sleeves and organized, is a great way to keep track of all that vital information.

What should you include in your binder? Personal info like marriage licenses, birth certificates, Social Security cards, passports, copies of drivers licenses, health and life insurance and medical contact. Financial info, include your checking, savings and investment account numbers. Be sure to include all your insurance policy information, home and auto titles, retirement information and a file of all your work and personal passwords.

Basic living needs

Whether you have two days or only two hours to evacuate, it’s always best to have a 72-hour kit, or “Bug Out Bag” at the ready so you can either grab it and go, or take that bag and add to it whatever additional you can. That bag should contain everything you might need for at least 72 hours. So, in addition to those important documents, create a basic survival kit for everyone in your home.

When building a Bug-Out Bag, be sure to include all your medications, individual first-aid kits that include common medications like Advil or allergy pills, cash in small bills, an AM/FM radio, a multi-purpose tool, extra Ziploc bags, a list of vital phone numbers, clothes, thermal blankets, bottled water, a water filtration system and food.

Prepping for pets

No family is truly, fully evacuated until every last pet is accounted for. Just as you build out a prep plan and 72-hour kit for each family member, you should also build a kit for each of your pets. And no, a pet survival kit doesn’t just contain plenty of food and treats, either. There are important things to remember when bugging out with your fur babies.

When packing your pet’s kit, be sure to include dog bowls, a supply of water, any medications they might need, additional collars and leashes, any necessary pet carriers, a stake and chain in the event you need to secure them, a muzzle (scared dogs bite), a blanket, Benadryl for allergies and all vaccine records.

— Jennifer Durrant

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