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Category Archives for "Emergency Communications"

“Surprising” Use of Water Bottle Could Save Your Life

Getting stuck in the wild can be a terrifying prospect. No microwave, no TV, no phone charger. But things get a lot more dangerous when you find yourself without a fire. If only you knew some basic survival skills…

Well you’re in luck. This video will teach you one simple life-saving hack for when things get rough. The best part is that it only requires items that you probably already have with you!

(via Grant Thompson – “The King of Random”)

From the “King of Random” straight to your survival arsenal! Now you know how to start a fire when you’re stuck in the woods.

22 Important Differences Between Successful Preppers and You

22 Important Differences Between Successful Preppers and You

Image Source: Beyond off Grid

Prepping isn’t about just collecting supplies and gear, it is actively changing one’s mindset to be prepared for anything.

This lifestyle is absolutely essential for catastrophes of any kind, so here is a look at 22 tips that separate the successful preppers from those that may be woefully unprepared.

1. Stock Your Car

Everyone in your family should have a bug-out bag, but it is not going to be practical to carry it at all times.

As an addition to a BOB, create a well-rounded car kit for every vehicle at your house with enough supplies for at least 72 hours.

2. Create Clear Goals

While having enough food and energy for a few weeks or months is a great place to start, long-term goals are also a necessity.

Start considering what your family’s goals might be all the way up through a few years such as changing your living location.

3. Make Family Communication a Priority

Even a great plan will fall through the cracks if a family cannot properly communicate.

Have multiple failsafe plans for connecting with one another no matter your locations. As an added bonus, have multiple plans if you cannot reach one another.

4. Stock Foods You Like

Few things will bring down morale as quickly as day after day of bland meals.

Take some time to taste test foods that you plan on saving and then rotate them out well before the expiration. Here are a few food kits you could try to see if you like them –> Click here for top rated food kits 

5. Learn Alternate Uses for All Your Prepping Products

Almost everything that is saved for prepping should have multiple purposes.

Simple steps such as saving a bag of dryer lint makes for unbeatable fire starting material.

6. Get Extended Family Involved

Your immediate family is most likely a priority, but including other members of your family will give you a fresh perspective.

Don’t forget about creating a plan for any disabled or elderly family members.

7. Keep a Supply of Medication Everywhere

Outside of a few basic necessities, medication is going to be one of the most important items to have on-hand.

A multiple day supply should be kept at work, in the car, and in your wallet or purse.

8. Go Overboard with Your Water Supply

If there is any spare room on your property or in your car to store water then use it.

A few clean old soda bottles can be turned into a multi-day water supply for practically nothing.

or Click here to Order a Water Filtration System

9. Weekly Inspections

You may not need to do an exhaustive inventory every few days, but a quickly weekly inspection and thorough monthly inspection should be on the agenda.

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10. Always Think Redundancy

Every single vital item should be included in multiple packs or included multiple times in a single pack.

Items like matches or a fire steel can be stashed in multiple places and add almost no weight.

11. Keep TP Everywhere

Almost anything can be used as toilet paper, but why not make your life a little easier after a disaster?

Stash TP in 2 gallon bags throughout your home and keep at least one package of tissue in very bag as well as the car.

12. Practice with Your Gear

Some prepping gear is not as intuitive as others and having the family practice with it all a few times a year is a great idea.

A solar heater may be a great invention, but they are not always the easiest device to figure out on the fly.

13. Be A Good Neighbor

You do not need to become best friends with every single person on your block, but take some time to get to know them.

You never know when a few extra people on friendly terms will become invaluable.

14. Create a Mini Lumberyard

Just as important as having some basic tools is to keep a stock of extra supplies for building and crafting.

A mini lumberyard can be a few jars of fasteners, bolts, wood glue, sealant, and nails.

15. Use Bleach and Iodine

When you have doubts about the safety of a water source, purify it.

A drop of bleach and iodine drops will kill the germs and help with the taste more than iodine tablets.

16. Test Your BOB Bag

Preppers should always be looking for ways to maximize the weight of their bug-out bag and ensure that they can wear it for extended periods.

Take it out, unpack it, pack it, and wear it around while doing chores to see how it feels

17. Keep Fit

Maintaining your own health and the health of your family is another vital step of successful prepping.

Always take some extra time every week to get in some exercise with a focus on strong cardio. Here is a workout regime you can do to stay in SHTF shape.

18. Consider Bartering Items

A disaster could result in the collapse of the modern economy, so start considering some bartering items.

Think of items you would find valuable after a catastrophe and then buy extras specifically for bartering and trading.

19. Swap Out Old Batteries

Keeping a running list of all items in you kit that use batteries and tag the list with the date when new batteries are put in.

Plan on changing out unused batteries every few months.

20. Research the Flora and Fauna Around You

As you begin preparing your family and home, take some time to explore the land around you.

Get to know some good fishing spots, where fresh water is, and what local plants are edible.

21. Invest in Good Maps

This is one area that preppers often skimp on, but a good map can make all the difference.

Have a few copies of city, county, and state maps that are tear and water-resistant.

22. Upgrade to a FRS/GMRS Radio

CB radios can quickly become filled with chatter and are not very secure.

Instead, upgrade to a set of FRS/GMRS radios. These can often be extended up to 3 or 4 miles with encryption features for the top brands. Click here for great deals on FRS/GMRS Radios

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10 Ways to Immediately Improve Your Everyday Carry Pack

We like to make sure our families and homes are prepared for the unexpected. We have shelves stocked with disaster-preparedness items: bottled water, canned goods, flashlights and batteries.

Our family members know a safe meeting spot—the basement or a hallway, maybe— to gather in case of emergency. Being ready feels great. The only problem is, we aren’t always home.

While it might not be practical to spend every possible moment in the safety of our houses, we do have a practical alternative.

Bring Survival Gear with You

One of the best ways we can stay prepared for the unexpected is by keeping a smart stash of survival gear in an everyday carry pack. That way, we will be ready for almost anything no matter where we are.

Many options of bags are available, from army-style backpacks to sleek messenger-style bags. Once you have your pack, optimize its usefulness with the following suggestions.

1. Staying Hydrated Means Staying Alive

Without hydration, our bodies shut down quickly. Always keep a reusable water bottle with fresh water in your daypack. A stainless steel canteen or thermos is your best bet, as metal is durable and holds up well despite extreme temperatures. It could also help you with cooking needs.

Pack water purification tablets so you can create more drinkable water when necessary. Consider iodine tablets or chlorine dioxide tablets. Beyond water, all living things also need a small amount of salt to stay hydrated.

Quench your body’s thirst completely by filling a re-sealable, waterproof plastic bag with electrolyte powder. This can be dissolved in drinkable water, and when your supply has been exhausted you can find a new use for the bag.


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2. Fueling Up with Food Supplies

Hydration, sleep, and sustenance are our top three biological needs. Be prepared with several nutrient-rich, high-calorie meal bars. Also pack some lightweight dehydrated meals, which are optimally consumed with the addition of a small amount of water.

Be ready to find and prepare more food, if necessary. Always carry a small, metal cooking pan with a folding arm. Food can be cooked in it and eaten out of it.

Also invest in a set of metal utensils—again, they can be used for both cooking and eating. Keep a small book with an abbreviated list of edible plants found in local woods.

3. Preventing Infection with a First Aid Kit

Small wounds can turn into serious infections, if not treated properly. Pack a re-sealable, waterproof plastic bag with medical supplies.

This should include cloth squares of several sizes. Large pieces can be used as slings or tourniquets, in the case of injury. Small pieces can be used on wounds in place of gauze, and later sterilized in boiling water for re-use.

Pack several individually wrapped alcohol-soaked toilettes that can be used to disinfect cuts. Also pack band-aids, athletic tape, cotton swabs, and cotton balls. A small tub of petroleum jelly is very helpful for treating chapped or damaged skin.

4. Maintaining Your Sense of Surroundings

Not knowing where you are can be disorienting. Keep maps of local and surrounding areas in your daypack. Pack maps in a re-sealable, waterproof plastic bag.

Also keep a sturdy compass, and make sure you know how to use it properly.

5. Building and Repair with Durable Multi-Use Items

It can be difficult to know exactly what types of situations you might find yourself in. But a few survival supplies have proven themselves to be so useful that it makes sense to keep them on-hand. Rope can be used for securing branches together when building shelter, or hanging damp clothes up to dry.

Duct tape can be used to patch up damaged supplies, or cut and folded to create new items. A multi-purpose knife can help harvest wild edible plants, carve wood, and tear fabric if necessary. Pack all items in re-sealable plastic bags.

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6. Warming Up and Using Light without Electricity

Exposure to the elements can be dangerous to your health. Stay warm and dry by allowing yourself to build a fire anytime, using waterproof strike-anywhere matches.

Keep a super-lightweight emergency thermal blanket in your daypack to help stay warm. Also keep a solar-powered headlamp in your supply kit.

Headlamps are extremely convenient, as they allow you to see and freely use both hands in the dark. A headlamp equipped with solar panels will stay lit for seven hours.

7. Recording Information and Communicating Off the Grid

You will often benefit from recording or swapping information with others. Make this possible by stocking your daypack with a leather-bound journal and waterproof pen.

Pack a whistle in case you ever need to sound a distress signal, and memorize SOS. A mirror can also be used to make signals, help you maintain personal hygiene, treat wounds, and stay sane if isolated.


8. Taking Care of Yourself

Poor personal hygiene can lead to poor health. Illness is the last thing you need in a survival situation.

Be prepared with a toothbrush, toothpaste, dental floss, and multi-purpose biodegradable soap. Use the soap for your face and body, hair, clothing, and cookware.

9. Clothing for All Situations

Keep a tiny, travel-sized sewing kit in your daypack. Make sure you have a basic understanding of how to use a needle and thread to repair clothing.

Pack a lightweight waterproof outer layer. Staying dry in inclement weather will help you maintain a healthy body temperature.

Also pack an insulating thermal layer, hat, and gloves, which may be needed to stave off cold weather. Pack extra wool socks to keep feet dry.

Wool is an excellent survival material as it is durable, dries quickly, and repels moisture.

10. Remembering the Other Important Things

Psychological research has shown how important it is for us to feel a sense of love and belonging.

Feeling connected with others not only tethers us to reality—it often gives us reason to live. Help yourself through the most unexpected and unwanted of times by keeping a personal memento or two in your daypack.

Someday, a special photograph or trinket might be just what you need to keep on pushing forward.

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Top 20 Websites for Survivalists

We decided it would be a great idea to put together a top 20 list of the best websites for Survivalists. This is what we’ve come up with from our research and we wanted to provide you with the best information possible.

So here you are!


1. Graywolf Survival

– One of the most popular survivalist sites, Graywolfsurvival is informative and easy to navigate.

2. American Preppers Network

– This website caters to a wide range of preppers. From novices to seasoned survivalists, this site contains information for everybody, as well as a blog to help you pick up tips from other preppers.

3. The Prepper Journal

– This site is very thorough and has a wealth of information, particularly for those who don’t know where to begin. The attractive layout is an added bonus.

4. Sovereign Survival

– This site is particularly helpful for preppers with families, and is chock full of links to other resources across the web. Great for people at any experience level, particularly those with small children.

5. The Survival Mom

– While this site appears to cater to women, don’t let the name fool you! This site is great for beginners of all genders who want tips on organization, prepping food, and keeping your kids entertained in the event of a crisis.

6. Doom and Bloom –

– Doom and Bloom is both fun and informational –containing helpful articles as well as a radio channel where you can tune in and get helpful survivalist tips.

7. Off Grid Survival –

– While this site is not super heavy on tips for beginners, it is a wealth of knowledge in terms of related news stories and information on practical gear.

8. Survival Spot

– This site is attractive and well laid out, but is recommended for those who already have base-level knowledge; otherwise the high-tech advice could bury a beginner.

9. Prepping To Survive

– Where most prepping websites focus on disaster related preparedness, this one targets wilderness survival in general, and is great for the adventurer who wants to be ready in case of emergency.

10. Prepper Resources

– This resource is not only provides information on prepping basics and gun safety, it will also link you to other sites on the web that can expand your knowledge.

11. Survival Cache

– While it does contains articles on storing food and water, this site’s main focus is weaponry. While it may seem extreme to some, it is an often overlooked aspect of being prepared.

12. SGT Report 

– This website is less about active survival tips and more about the danger we are facing on a daily basis – however, it can be helpful to train yourself to know the warning signs of crisis.

13. The Prepared Ninja 

– A short, simple, and well-organized blog for those who understand the fundamentals, but need help with practical execution.

14. Authorized Boots –

– Authorized Boots is for all things related to Army boots and tactical gear. They provide their expertise as well as team’s insights to provide high quality reviews of your favorite army boots based on their experience, opinions, and relentless research to be a trusted source in your purchase journey.

15. The Organic Prepper

– This website is very beginner friendly, but also focuses more on an eco-friendly approach to survivalism. The blogger has several other sites that are related to prepping.

16. Backdoor Survival

– While this site is slightly more difficult to navigate, it has a wealth of in-depth preparation tips, particularly for those with large families and those who want tips on training their mind as well as their bug-out bags.

17. Survival Blog

– Where some sites are a little skimpy, this site has almost an overload of information; however, it is very organized, and has information that appeals to all level of prepper.

18. Survival MD –

– This website has the only complete medical field survival guide for the laymen…showing you how to treat yourself and loved ones in an emergency when doctors, pharmacies and hospitals are shut down.

19. Suburban Prepper

– Suburban prepper has a few tips for those who are a little more outdoors-y.

20. Blackout USA –

– This site is all about educating you about a threat so powerful it will wipe out 281 million Americans in the first year. And while NASA, the CIA and the Pentagon are warning us like crazy…no mainstream T.V. or radio outlet is talking about it.



How to get in touch with someone if the Power Grid goes down

So, the apocalypse is coming, and you think that you are prepared.


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Well, have you thought about how you will be contacting your friends and family during the post-apocalyptic world?

If you are reading this, you might have actually started preparing for that exact scenario.

The truth is, when the apocalypse happens, the power grid will likely go down, and that will leave all modern technological advances null and void. 

Old School Wonders

Many of the younger generation do not even know what walkie-talkies are, but they will definitely come in handy when the power grid goes down.

Due to the fact that many walkie-talkies are battery operated, it is important to not only have the handheld devices ready, but make sure that you have plenty of batteries on hand to keep them working.

walkie talkies for survival


The great thing about walkie-talkies is that each channel can be used for communication. Everyone in the family should agree on using a specific channel, and stick to that agreement.

It would be a great idea to store the walkie-talkies after switching them to the appropriate channel.

By doing this, you are ensuring that every member of your family is on the same page (i.e. channel) if/when all hell breaks loose. 

Now with all of that being said, if you do not sell yourself short on your preparedness you should definitely invest in solar-powered walkie-talkies.

If you choose solar-powered devices, you will no longer have to burden yourself with batteries for this device when you could be thinking about more important items like food, water and shelter. 

When All Else Fails…

Given that many people will have to travel to get to their relatives, there are more factors to consider than walkie-talkies.

Always leave notes on easy-to-see landmarks.

Now, if you are not properly trained in self-defense and/or gun safety and handling procedure this could be dangerous, but that is why we are going to go ahead and recommend that you start training now.

In the event that chaos ensues, you will need to be able to protect yourself and/or your family.

Back to the point… By keeping something handy to write with (i.e. permanent marker), you will be able to lead any of your friends/family directly to you.

Not only do you want to let them know which way you have gone, but you will also need to inform them of where you are going, when you left and when/if you plan on returning to that point. 

It cannot be stressed enough that when using this method of communication, you need to be well-trained on how to take care of yourself. If hell breaks loose, people will no longer politely ask for a cup of sugar or a can of corn, but they will likely hurt or even kill you to get what they want. 

To put it in a nutshell, when the power grid goes down, cellphones, tablets, computers and landlines are no longer useful.

You and your family should have a secret code for communication, walkie-talkies that are all set to the same channel and a clear understanding of what to do and where to go.

Once that line of communication has been incorporated, the rest should fall into place. 

The 3 things you will always need in an Urban Survival situation

I came across this article about the 3 things you will always need in an urban survival situation and had to share it with you… here’s a brief excerpt of it.

WTSHTF maybe you are prepared for an extended survival scenario away from civilization, but you have to get out of the city first (maybe). In a disaster situation that might not be so easy. If you have these three things in place you will greatly increase your chances.

1.  Get Home Bag (GHB)


Imagine for a minute that you work downtown in a large city, maybe you ride the subway or take a bus to work everyday. You are in a large office building with many floors, thousands of people, and you are on the fifteen or twentieth story. If a disaster strikes how are you going to get out? I mean literally. If there is an earthquake, or a catastrophic man made event how are you going to get out of your building? How are you going to get down the street? How are you going to get home? Do you want to be one of the people covered in dust wandering around in shock? I sure don’t.

But I have my Bug out Bag you say!

Oh really, where is it? Even if it is in your car it is useless to you at this point. The parking garage is at street level and possibly blocks away. That could mean life or death in this situation and you need to act now.

Even if you could get to your Bug Out Bag, how much good would it do you in this environment? Most people’s B.O.B. is packed for survival in the wilderness. Camping gear, food, clothing, etc.

Get Home Bag contains an entirely different set of tools and serves one purpose: To get you from wherever you are to your Home.

How to Choose an Urban Survival Bag

Your GBH should contain things that are going to get you out of the building like a prybar. Things to help you make it through the aftermath like water and breathing masks. Things you might use to help rescue others like flashlights or radios. Things that will help you on what could be a very long walk home such as food and maybe shoes.

Clearly a GHB is not a Bug Out Bag. Sure they have some overlap, but a GBH can be much smaller, less weight conscious, have more specific tools, and be planned for one purpose. Do you have one cached  in your office or place of work?


Want to read the rest of the article?


Click here to read the article –> The 3 things you will always need in an Urban Survival situation


Preparing for Power Blackouts – Plan Ahead and You Can Weather Any Storm

When you were a kid, you probably loved power outages.

Blackouts were a chance to see what the world would be like without electricity, the hum of motors and lights polluting the sky.

For a moment, you could step back in time and experience the world as a simpler, less technologically driven society.

The biggest blackout in the history of the United States occurred on August 14, 2003 during the height of summer.

Over 50 million Americans were affected.

The question isn’t when a blackout is going to happen, but are you prepared for it?


Photo Source: Off The Grid News

As an adult, you know the risks of a blackout.

You know that when the power goes out in the middle of summer, your family gets put at risk of prolonged exposure to the elements.

Items in your refrigerator are going to begin to spoil, and a power outage can cost you more than you’re willing to lose.

In the winter, you can freeze without backup sources of heat and depending on your location, the pipes in your home can burst as the walls cool and the pipes freeze.

Blackouts can come at any time, and while only temporary, there is no reason for your family to suffer if you’re prepared.

Emergency Kits

If you don’t yet have an emergency kit, you’re asking for trouble when the next blackout hits.

The emergency kit should contain enough food, water, and supplies to last at least 72 hours.

Canned foods that don’t need to be heated, energy bars, bottled water, and gels that have a long shelf life are all good options.

Keep a list of when your goods expire, use them, and replace them with fresh products.

You should also have a basic first aid kit and learn how to use it before an accident occurs.

Don’t use the emergency kit unless it’s an actual emergency to prevent opening yourself up to a situation where you don’t have the necessary supplies.

Every emergency kit should also have a battery powered radio to listen to the news, flashlights, and plenty of batteries.

Prep Your Fridge and Freezer

Fill the empty space in your fridge and freezer with plastic bottles.

Allow for proper air flow, but don’t leave extra room in your fridge or freezer.

Keeping frozen and chilled bottles of water in your refrigerator and freezer allows your food to stay fresh even when the power goes out.

As the fridge and freezer warm up, the frozen and chilled water will help keep your food cold and prevent spoilage.

If you do have a power outage, don’t open that refrigerator or freezer unless you absolutely need to.

This can help ensure that any medications and foods that need to stay cool don’t get put at risk.

Keep Your Car Full

Keep your car full of gas, or better yet, have a good set of bicycles for everyone in your family.

When there is a power outage, gas stations pumps won’t work.

You can also keep gas in an approved storage container and replace it weekly to ensure that there is always gas on hand in the case of an emergency.

Additionally, if you have an electric garage door, know how to open it if there is no power to your house.

Often, this seemingly simple problem can become very serious if there is a power outage, some gets injured and you have no way to get your car out of the garage.

What have you done to prepare for blackouts?

7 Actions to Take Immediately After an EMP Strike

An EMP strike is an electromagnetic pulse that will wipe out electronics throughout an area.

As a nation, we are almost incapable of realizing how much we rely on electronics in our daily lives, so when an EMP strike hits, it will take a day or two for other people to realize the vast implications.


Photo Source: The Foundry

One of the first steps to reacting to an EMP strike begins long before it happens.

You should have plenty of batteries and food on hand to live a few weeks, months or a year into the future.

If you’ve been planning ahead for emergencies, you’ll have most of what you need on hand.

1. Gather the Family

If you’re at work when this happens, get home as quickly as possible.

The family should understand what to do in case of emergency as well.

A disaster plan should be fully ingrained in them.

It’s important to have them all gather at home when an EMP strike hits.

Cars, buses and other transportation will have ground to a halt, so you’ll need to have discussed an alternate mode of travel in advance.

2. Shopping

While everyone else is waiting for the government to step in and fix things, you should be out shopping for supplies.

You already have plenty on hand, but cash will be useless if the loss of electricity continues for weeks and months.

Looting will be an issue later too.

It’s vital that you get everything you can now.

Take a bike with a basket or a wire carriage with you for carrying the heavy load.

You don’t want to be limited by the weight.

3. Fill Containers with Water

The tub, empty bottles, sinks and other containers should be filled with as much water as possible.

You should have water purifying tablets on hand, or buy them on your trip to the store.

It’s important to have as much water as possible before the water stops flowing.

Click here to learn more about long term water storage.

4. Secure the Home

While you may not have to go underground or into a bunker quite yet, the home should be shored up against random attacks.

As time goes on, people will begin to panic or hunger will descend upon them.

They will break into homes for food or supplies.

5. Listen for Updates

There might not be any communications right now, but eventually there may be.

You’ll want to monitor radio stations with the small, hand-crank radio that you bought long ago.

Any news that leaks through will keep you more informed and better able to protect your family.

6. Neighborhood

Before the EMP strike, you should have been evaluating your neighbors for who will be helpful during a crisis, and who will be a drain on resources.

Band together with neighbors who will be a help to your family.

It’s okay to help your less prepared neighbors, but ultimately, your family’s survival is paramount.

7. Rations

Don’t wait to start rationing food. You don’t know how long this situation will last.

Having plenty of food doesn’t mean you should waste a single drop of it.

Read this article on food storage and start storing food immediately.

The water should be rationed to the most important things too.

Click here to get food rations 

Most of the preparation should be done prior to an EMP attack.

It’s vital to plan down to the seemingly smallest detail to be sure your family is safe and secure.

You can’t count on anyone but yourself and your family in the event of an emergency of that magnitude.

Make sure you’re self-contained and able to live that way for an extended period of time.


Preparing for Power Blackouts

With the recent weather patterns and crazy weather that we’ve been seeing all over, it’s best to be prepared for when these power blackouts happen.

Power outages are nothing new and thousands of homes within the US are without power every year. Most of the time its only for a few hours, however it sometimes is out for a few days or even weeks.

Would you be prepared if the power stayed off for several days or even months?

I’m willing to bet that many of you reading this right now aren’t prepared. I know this because I was once exactly where you are. I was a beginner prepper and unsure of what I needed and what I should prepare for. Many people say to prepare for pole changing climate switches, while others feel it’s important to prepare in case anything happens with a global problem. 

Power outages are nothing new and thousands of homes are without power every year in the U.S. most for only a few hours, but some for days or even weeks – would you be prepared if the power stayed off for several days or even months?

These extended power outages are a real possibility after events like serious hurricanes, winter storms (this past winter), or even the result of a terrorist attack affecting the power grid or an EMP strike.

The U.S. runs on electricity and without a functional power grid, the U.S. would stop functioning. Gas pumps won’t work, scanners at super markets won’t work, radios and televisions won’t function and computers won’t connect to the Internet.

What would you do to provide for your family? 

Everyone needs to have a plan for situations like this. Even if it’s unlikely to happen, you are better off being prepared and not needing it than not being prepared and needing it. So where do you start? What will you need to prepare so that the next blackout won’t become a major issue for you?

Safe Drinking Water

Safe drinking water is one of the first things you will want to have. You can learn how to prepare safe drinking water here, or get one of our recommended water purification water bottles here.

You may be on municipal water supply which means your water may not be affected, but you should still be prepared and stock up.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) recommends storing at least one gallon of water per day per person for emergency use. A normally active person needs at least one-half gallon of water daily just for drinking they state. You’ll also need to take into consideration age, physical condition, activity, diet, and climate to determine needed qualities. And don’t forget about your pets, they need water too.

Many of you may be in the process of living off-the-grid, and you’ll need to find a nearby spring to get water from as well as have stored water in your emergency kit. The easiest way to store drinking water is to simply buy bottled water but its cheaper if you store water from your own tap. You can learn how to store water for long term emergencies by clicking here.

Many people over on our Facebook page have asked about storing water in milk jugs, and we recommend against it. Milk jugs can work for short-term storage, but they’re prone to leaking and the plastic in them deteriorates quick. The reason they deteriorate so quickly is that milk proteins are often left in the container, even after cleaning. Using the two liter plastic soda bottles is a better option or you can get proper water storage devices.

If you choose to use 2 liter bottles, FEMA recommends sanitizing the bottles after cleaning with dishwashing soap and water, you can do this by adding a solution of 1 teaspoon of non-scented liquid household chlorine bleach to each quart of water. Swish this solution around the bottle making sure it hits every surface. After you wash it with this, rinse thoroughly with clean water.

Contrary to what you may have read elsewhere, there is no need to add liquid household chlorine bleach to tap water before storage as this water has already been treated by the water utility company. In this case all you need to do is fill the bottles to the top and tightly screw on the cap.

Emergency Food

Next up you’re going to need food. One of the most important things you will need to keep in mind with emergency foods is that you are storing foods that you and your family actually enjoy. It’s a horrible experience eating foods you don’t like when you have no other options, so be sure to store foods you like. Canned soups, meats, nuts, fruits and veggies, peanut butter, dried fruits and veggies and crackers will last a year if stored properly in unopened air tight containers.

Other things to store in air tight, food safe containers are:

  • self-rising flour
  • corn meal
  • sugar
  • salt
  • rolled oats
  • other dried goods

One common mistake that people make is not using and rotating their stored food. People will buy a bunch of foods and stock up for emergencies, but then put it on the shelf and throwing it out when its past its expiration date.

Be sure to keep track of your food and rotate it according to schedule. 

How can you do this?

Simple! Grab a permanent marker and some duct tape. You simply place a piece of duct tape on the container and write on the duct tape. Then just use a first-in, first-out system for moving food. As each item is used in your everyday meals, replace that item with a new product of the same value, date and repeat. Simple, right?

It’s best to keep at least a two-week emergency food supply in your house at all times. Ideally you should have several months to a years worth of food. However, this isn’t practical for people who live in smaller houses and apartments.

You will need to make the decision based on your family’s eating habits to determine how much will be enough.

Heating and Cooking during Power Blackouts

Most of the power outages that happen within the US. I grew up in upstate NY and there was often power outages for periods of a few days, however some people have had experiences where they are without power for a few weeks or even a month.

This is where things like kerosene heaters can come in handy.It has been estimated that a gallon of kerosene will provide about the same heat output as a wheelbarrow load of wood.

Kerosene is easier than gasoline for storage and it actually has a longer storage life than gasoline. You want to be sure to label your kerosene in order to avoid putting gasoline where kerosene should be. Following a color coding system for this will prevent any accidents, just remember which colors are which. Keep a chart and label the containers.

There is a disadvantage to using kerosene is that it can smell if not used properly, along with having to refill them every few hours.

Standard fuel container color coding systems:

  • blue for kerosene
  • red for gasoline
  • yellow for diesel

We recommend having three gallons of kerosene saved per day, which means you’ll need a minimum of 28 gallons for 2 weeks. You can do the math to figure out your needs for any longer.

Keep in mind that this is only an estimate and actual usage will depend on several factors. Including but not limited to the type of heater, quality of the fuel, condition of the wick (don’t for get to add an extra wick to your emergency kit) and environmental conditions where the heater is used.


Miscellaneous Suggestions

Most of these items can be stored in some sort of bug out bag, five-gallon plastic bucket with gamma seal lid or plastic totes until needed.

  • A good first aid kit
  • A sleeping bag for each family member
  • Several pairs of wool socks for each family member
  • Thermal underwear for each family member
  • A battery-operated or crank radio and extra batteries
  • A deck of cards, jigsaw puzzles, and board games etc.
  • Flashlight and batteries
  • Battery-powered lamps or lanterns
  • Non-electric can opener
  • Prescription drugs and other needed medicine
  • Rock-salt to melt ice on walkways
  • Chemical fire extinguisher
  • Battery powered smoke alarm
  • Battery powered carbon monoxide detector
  • Disposable plates, bowls and utensils (to avoid wasting water washing dishes)

If you have any other suggestions or questions feel free to ask in the comments below. Stay safe my friends.