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Disaster preparedness for the home

Post in 'DIY and General non-hearth advice' started by bad0351, Oct 6, 2011.

?

How many have acted on this and have prepared

  1. Just the basics

    56.3%
  2. I can get through but not for more than a couple days

    25.0%
  3. I feel I am as prepared as I can be

    18.8%
  4. All set for 6 months no matter what

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. bad0351

    bad0351 Member

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2011
    Messages:
    47
    Loc:
    SW New Hampshire
    Hi guys,

    I was trying to put together a list of items that would get my family through two weeks of disaster .........
    I was wondering if some of you have a section in the basement or other place you keep these things and how you set it up.

    Thanks for helping out....I'm sure you can help here.

    Dale..........Just me and my wife but we should be prepared.

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  2. jimbom

    jimbom Combustion Analyzer

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2010
    Messages:
    1,022
    Loc:
    Missouri Ozarks
    Few cases of canned food and some cases of water. Wood stoves, generator, candles etc. Water is the thing we could do better at. We have a lot of wood and good solar exposure for winter heat.
  3. jdinspector

    jdinspector Feeling the Heat

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2009
    Messages:
    410
    Loc:
    Northern IL
    I was at a home a few months ago that was all set. They had a large shelving unit with buckets of various types of dry foods. Also had a lot of water and a filter setup. These people were expecting WWIII!!!

    I've considered doing something similar (toned down a bit). Thanks for the reminder. Maybe that'll be a winter project for me. I have an empty shelving unit that would be perfect for this type of storage.
  4. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2008
    Messages:
    15,249
    Loc:
    Unity/Bangor, Maine
    I think I'm pretty good . . . living in the country you learn to not go to town to shop too often anyways . . . we end up going about every two weeks . . . and honestly, if push came to shove I suspect I have enough frozen food, pasta and canned food to last well over a month -- although I would no doubt get tired of eating spaghetti.

    As for water . . . plenty of springs nearby if need be . . . just wouldn't be able to shower.

    Heat . . . well that pretty much is a given.

    Comfort . . . have a generator . . . just would need some gas . . . I typically have 2-5 gallons on hand at any given time.
  5. zzr7ky

    zzr7ky Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2006
    Messages:
    1,052
    I have a spot where backpacking equipement is stored. Water filter, containers, chlorine, tents, wood stove for tent, etc... One will also need a means of ensuring that they're avoided by local thugs...
  6. jharkin

    jharkin Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2009
    Messages:
    3,325
    Loc:
    Holliston, MA USA
    In order of priority:

    Shelter - check.

    First Aid - check. I keep an expedition grade FA kit in the house

    Water - check. Ive got a couple of camping water filers (antiviral) so if need be we can go to the stream.

    Food - we probably have enough in the panty to eek out about 2 weeks. I keep about a month of baby formula on hand for the kids.

    Heat - check. 4 cord stacked :)

    Light - check. Ive got a bunch of LED flashlights, a white gas lantern with a couple gallons, and the wife has a massive candle collection

    Power - I have a small gen, and usually enough gas on hand to run it for 1-2 days. Mainly have it to run the sump pump, if flooding is not an issue that can last us for a week or two, just running it a couple hours a day to cycle the septic pump and chill the fridge. (still working on a transfer switch setup).
  7. madrone

    madrone Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2008
    Messages:
    1,287
    Loc:
    Just South of Portland, OR
    There's no option for "Shhh! I'm watching TV."?
    I guess I've got some camping gear down in the basement...
  8. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2008
    Messages:
    15,972
    Loc:
    Anderson, Indiana
    I am probally in the one year range. Without picking up the gun. Once the chicken start lying even longer.
  9. PapaDave

    PapaDave Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2008
    Messages:
    5,740
    Loc:
    Northern MI - in the mitten
    Not sure exactly how long we'd be able to go, but the pantry has a bunch of canned goods, the extra freezer is usually mostly full, and if we don't have power for the well pump, I could go to the hand pump out by the garden. I'd have to take some snow in the house to melt on the stove to prime it, but we'd have water.
    Heat, of course, is not an issue. :cheese:
    Similar to Jake (and I'm sure others), we try to only do the shopping once a month (nearest big store is a little over 35 miles away), but there is a small local grocery less than a mile away.
    I guess we could always eat the dogs. :bug:
  10. fossil

    fossil Accidental Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2007
    Messages:
    10,374
    Loc:
    Bend, OR
    Almost no end to the resources available on the web. I s'pose part of it depends on just how long a period of time you think you need to prepare for...a week without services after a major storm or earthquake...or surviving on your own for the rest of your life after some sort of Armageddon? Here's just one of the zillions of discussion guides available on the subject:

    http://www.fema.gov/areyouready/
  11. Highbeam

    Highbeam Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2006
    Messages:
    9,126
    Loc:
    base of Mt. Rainier on the wet side, WA
    Probably a mormon's house. They have a thing about independence for a ceratin amount of time.

    If some disaster hits and you are unable to get food, then what makes you folks think that there will be power? Your freezers will thaw and you will have to feast before spoilage. Then what?

    Really, a source of water, heat, and some sort of food source is all you need. You don't need light, you likely won't need first aid. Also, don't we all just have to last longer than our neighbors?
  12. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2005
    Messages:
    28,740
    Loc:
    Northern Virginia
    Since we live a good ways from the fire station I bought a Scott's Airpak at an auction a few years ago. When the auctioneer started the bidding he said "Here is your opportunity to live thirty minutes longer than your neighbors when the big one comes.".
  13. SmokeyTheBear

    SmokeyTheBear Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2008
    Messages:
    12,151
    Loc:
    Standish, ME
    During winter we routinely go for a month without going to the grocery store. Between the pantry and the canned goods shelving it looks like a supermarket before winter sets in.

    The biggest thing here would be keeping enough gasoline around for the generator.

    I have no intention of planning for WWIII, too old to dig to the required depth for one and there are too many damn boulders for another.
  14. snowleopard

    snowleopard Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2009
    Messages:
    1,494
    I have enough textbooks on hand to take the kids (and myself) back to pre-algebra for review and then get them through calculus; biology, microbiology, earth science, oceanography, astronomy, physics; couple of volumes of world history around (light in this area--thanks); an Oxford unabridged dictionary and magnifying glass; plenty of study skills/writing materials and binders and binder dividers; quite a few art supplies, including an overhead projector if I can get power once in awhile; two or three violins, a harp, a dulcimer, a couple of flutes, some guitars, and some--probably not enough--reading material on hand.

    I'm pretty set for firewood if the disaster can hold off for a year.

    I have a handpump that will pull water out of our holding tank if necessary. Tank is a few thousand gallons, which will last quite awhile if we give up those pesky showers and laundry, assuming it's been topped off when the little one hits (not well-armed enough for the big one). A fair bit of food in the pantry if people can get over themselves. Or none whatsoever ("There's nothing to eat here!") Soap and shampoo. Skis and bikes. Seeds. Growing boxes.

    I think the most useful asset to have in an emergency is good neighbors--to be part of a community that pulls together and offers services to one another as a medium of exchange and because you help your neighbors. I may be kinda light in that department. And then there's you guys. Whaddaya wanna bet that some version of this site manages to stay on the air?
  15. stee6043

    stee6043 Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2008
    Messages:
    2,350
    Loc:
    West Michigan
    I have been thinking about this topic quite a bit recently. Being on a well with a generator I feel like water isn't a big concern for me but food is. I really need to set aside an afternoon and fill a bin with proper food that our family could go a few weeks on. I think it's a wise investment much like a fire safe. You might never use it, but it's nice to have it there.
  16. maverick06

    maverick06 Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2008
    Messages:
    724
    Loc:
    media, pa
    I have thought about this a lot as well, it depends on what you want to prepare for.

    I have a good bit of food at home, generators, lots of wood, etc. So I am set for the little stuff (power outages, snow storms, ice storms) I am probably good for most realistic natural disasters that might happen in my area.

    I sure am not ready for WWIII or anything like that. My big limiting factor is water. I have no well, and am not going to put on in. There isnt any practical way to save large quantities. Since that is my limiting factor, I might as well tailor everything to that.

    I realistically see no need to start stocking up on ammo.
  17. billb3

    billb3 Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2007
    Messages:
    3,477
    Loc:
    SE Mass
    I could go a month.
    I'd be sick of spaghetti and soup but I'd eat..
    I used to have lots and lots of canned goods, but they don't keep forever and we've cut back somewhat to make it easier to keep up with first in first out.
    I'd rather keep some cash in a jar and if a bad storm is forecast stock up on canned goods. Can always donate them to a shelter or food pantry.
  18. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2008
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    15,972
    Loc:
    Anderson, Indiana

    Some Religions will state a years supply. I have caned and froze 3 freezer full. Not looking for the end of the world, just prepare for a turn for the worse in the economy. Lost job is all it would take.
  19. woodgeek

    woodgeek Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2008
    Messages:
    2,727
    Loc:
    SE PA
    I keep a couple week's heat in solid fuel in a separate stash (bricks in the garage), and always keep a second filled propane tank on hand, along with a propane camp stove. No genny, but I have a micro- solar/battery thing that can keep our small devices charged and run a couple cfls. I figure we have 2 weeks of food by virtue of pantry disorganziation.

    No one worries about $$ during the zombie apocalypse? I figure a couple weeks pocket and grocery money in old fashioned cash is a no-brainer.
  20. snowleopard

    snowleopard Minister of Fire

    Joined:
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    Messages:
    1,494
    My daughter is responsible for our ZRP (Zombie Response Plan). She follows the work of Mike Harris, Ph.D., who is on the advisory board of the Zombie Research Society, and is persuaded by him that the drive for brains is fueled by their fat-burning metabolism. Essentially, zombies are on an extreme version of low-carb diets. We keep bacon and cream cheese on hand. Perhaps we will stock up on fried pork rinds--relatively cheap, and they keep forever. And of course, the instructional film Zombieland rules are invaluable:
    1."Cardio" (and maybe those fried pork rinds, yes?)
    2."Double tap"
    3."Beware of bathrooms"
    4."Wear seatbelts"
    7."Travel light"
    17."Don't be a hero"
    18."Limber up"
    22."When in doubt, know your way out"
    29."The buddy system"
    31."Check the back seat"
    32."Enjoy the little things"
    33."Swiss army knife"
    49."Always have backup"
  21. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

    Joined:
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    48,332
    Loc:
    South Puget Sound, WA
    LOL
  22. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    15,972
    Loc:
    Anderson, Indiana

    +1 I guess this is why the grocery stores sell out with 6 inchs of snow in the forecast! ;-)
  23. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

    Joined:
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    Loc:
    Northern Virginia
    Toilet paper. Lots and lots of toilet paper.
  24. snowleopard

    snowleopard Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2009
    Messages:
    1,494
    This is starting to sound a lot like a compilation of my `winter's coming' shopping list. I just feel better going into the snowy season with my pantry and laundry and bathroom cupboards stocked up--there's just something comforting about having soap and toilet paper enough to see me through 'til summer. I know we're due up for a polarity shift, return of the ice age, etc., any old day, and we've all got to bite the bullet sometime--but nice to go out with clean socks and Twinkies, if that's your personal preference.

    Dale, I hope that you've been hanging around here long enough not to take it personally when the thread runs off the road and into the tall grass . . . this happens a fair bit around here.

    Call your local LDS church and ask if they will help you learn more about this subject. They have it down to a science, and will send around a couple of young people doing their missionary service work to help people learn more about this topic. Just remember to offer them herbal tea when they arrive, not a cold beer.
  25. SmokeyTheBear

    SmokeyTheBear Minister of Fire

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2008
    Messages:
    12,151
    Loc:
    Standish, ME
    For many of us it is the same as bunkering up for the winter. There is actually little difference.

    Now if the op wants to elaborate on the "disaster" he is concerned about it would help.

    Then we could say things like water purification tablets, a side arm (no peashooters), ammo for same, hatchet, folding saw, fishing line, fish hooks, canteen, rifle, ammo for same, big knife, pocket knife, money (don't know where you'll spend it) water or place to obtain it, a couple of large victor rat traps and pennies to soup up the springs of same, a collapsible trenching shovel, waterproof matches and container or other mean of igniting a fire, dehydrated meals, small first aid kit, etc ....

    There are websites that provide all of these and more in various configurations covering from 72 hours to a year or more.

    BrotherBart you hit the nail on the head about the TP ;-) .

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