- Clarity of Thought
So what would you say if I told you that you have 3 days to study for a test. I’m not gonna tell you what the test is on but if you don’t ace it you may lose your life… I would hope you’d question my sanity! And so it is with emergency preparedness. So many of us are preparing for some “anonymous disaster”. How on earth can you possibly prepare for something if you don’t know what it is?
That is why step one in emergency prep is know what you’re preparing for. So get a piece of paper and ask yourself this question:
What natural disaster or extreme circumstances am I likely to face in the future?
Make a list of all of the things that would answer that question. Here are some examples of things you may add to your list.
Extreme High Heat
Heavy Thunder Storms
Severe Winter Weather
Toxic Material Emission or Spill
Riot or Civil Disorder
Nuclear Plant Melt Down
Plague or Disease Outbreak
Death in the Family
Mugging or Robbery
Put some careful consideration into which items you add to your list. For example – Texas has had crippling droughts this year. If you live in a city you are more susceptible to a robbery or mugging. Nationwide unemployment is at a healthy and steady 9%. All of your environmental and lifestyle factors need to play a part in which disasters should be added to this list.
After you make your list, prioritize the items by the most likely to least likely affect you within the next 5 years. Now make a second column for the answer to the following question:
What are the ramifications of each item on my list?
Answer this questions by thinking about how each disaster on your list would affect you. Be careful in your analysis of this answer. Do you have children? Pets? Do you work from or away from home? Think of all the opportunities throughout your day that these disasters could change your life. Examples:
Thunder Storm with Electrical Outage
No power for 2-48 hours
Potential Food Spoilage
No Temperature Control
Local Transit Impaired/Shut Down
Lightning Damage/Fire Potential
Once you have this completed you will now be armed with the knowledge of what needs preparation for. Now instead of buying random emergency preparedness packages and gizmos – you have a targeted and focused effort on what you need for supplies and education. If you care for another example, let’s take a look at my Disaster Preparation List
Jessica’s Potential Disasters
- Economic Collapse – Everyone should be prepping for this one. The Euro and Dollar are reaching the end of their shelf life.
- Earthquake – The majority of the Utah Wasatch Front lies on a fault line that is long overdue for a big one.
- Unemployment – We currently own our own business and live with the knowledge that tomorrow everyone could decide to just spend money on food instead of advertising.
- Flooding – Lehi has a very high water table. This last year many areas were flooded.
- War – A bunch of bad guys are getting their grubby little hands on some nukes. Iran, North Korea, need I say more.
Ramifications of Jessica’s Disasters
- Economic Collapse – Paper money becomes useless. Inflation makes food impossibly expensive. Utility prices skyrocket – no electricity. Civil unrest. Higher chances of looting and robbery. Oil and gas become too expensive or unavailable altogether.
- Earthquake – Destruction of property. Water contamination. Electricity outage for extended period of time. Civil unrest. Personal Injury.
- Unemployment – Loss of income.
- Flooding – Destruction of property. Destruction of unprotected food storage and other stored items. Mold growth.
- War – Possibility of nuclear attacks.
Hopefully that made it a little more concrete for you. Now that I have my list of disasters I know exactly what I need to protect myself and my family from the ramifications of such disasters. For example – going through this exercise made me realize that perhaps building a storage shed with a basement would be a better place to put my emergency supplies rather than in the basement of my home. That way if the great and terrible earthquake hits Utah and my entire house collapses in on itself it would be much easier dig through a small storage shed to get to my supplies than it would to sort through rubble from an entire house. Just food for thought. So remember, this is step one. Get a plan starting with what the plan is a solution for. Happy prepping!