Our thoughts and prayers go out to all the people and families affected by Hurricane Sandy.
For the past few days my family and I have been glued to the Weather Channel and to the national news. Colorado is home to many former East Coasters and like them maybe you have friends or family who were or still are in the path of the hurricane. Even if you don’t, it’s hard not to empathize with our fellow Americans and try to offer love and support. Or maybe you were scheduled on one of the more than 18,000 flights that were cancelled? Or stuck in an affected area unable to travel back to Colorado.
For days I followed my friends Facebook and Twitter updates as they posted information on how Hurricane Sandy was impacting their lives. As Coloradoans know from this summer you can never be too prepared for a weather or natural disaster. Which got me thinking about my home’s emergency kit or lack of one. Are you prepared even for a small inconvenience like losing your electricity in a snow storm. Just some of the following Facebook updates prompted me to do some research on home emergency kits.
“I went to five stores before I was able to track down D batteries.”
“Just came back from three stores and forgot the dog’s food.”
“Don’t forget to fill your bath tub with water, in case you need to use the water to flush the toilet.”
“Lots of canned food but the power is off so I can’t open the cans!”
The simple things we depend on to get through our daily lives could disappear without much warning. While you can certainly buy a home emergency kit online or in most specialty hardware stores, FEMA has some helpful emergency supplies checklists on their site (PDF), these checklists makes it easy to put together your own emergency kit. There are quite a few items on the list that I would not have thought of including: “extra dog or cat food, whistle to signal for help, fire extinguisher, and chlorine bleach and a medicine dropper.” Don’t forget you should have a smaller emergency kit for your car and your office.
As I write this the national news is reporting unbelievable devastation on the New Jersey Shore and in New York City, millions of Americans are without power and blizzard conditions continue in West Virginia. I’m sure in the next few days, weeks and months we will share in the sorrow of our fellow Americans and rejoice in the unexpected glimmers of hope as we wait for word of survivors and watch our first response personnel and large numbers of volunteers help rebuild from the latest national disaster.
While the news stories continue and the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy unfolds I know that our country will come together and give back just as the rest of America gave back to Colorado after the devastating wildfires this past summer. If you can give, a donation to the American Red Cross is always the safest organization to give to at this time. The American Red Cross works to help families get through the natural disaster and supports families through the rebuilding of their homes, communities and their lives.
Do you have a basic emergency supply kit? If so what prompted you to put it together? Are there any emergency supplies that you could think of that aren’t on the list? Please share in the comments.