Stocking Your Shelter for Emergencies

Being prepared for a storm doesn’t just mean keeping our bodies safe from harm during the actual storm. We must also consider the subsequent effects, after the storm has blown by, those effects which could last for days or even weeks. Often after tornadoes, hurricanes, and even just bad storms, our everyday resources such as electricity and running water become limited or completely cut off. This means the food in our refrigerator spoils, we can’t cook on our stove or in our microwave, and we have no fresh water to drink (or even to brush our teeth!)

That’s why it’s a good idea to maintain a small inventory of supplies in your storm shelter. If your shelter is an underground model, you have the extra benefit of storing your provisions in a cool, dark space, where food will keep fresh longer. Jugs of distilled water and canned food items (don’t forget a can opener!) are easy-to-store items that you will want on hand when there’s no electricity or water. You can also store boxed food items such as crackers or cereal, but you will want to store those in air-tight plastic containers to maintain freshness. Remember, even food in cans won’t last forever: FEMA recommends you replace food supplies every six months or so and always throw out swollen or otherwise damaged food packages.

Other items you may want to consider storing in your storm shelter: diapers and baby wipes, first aid kit, asthma inhaler, diabetes and other medical supplies, toiletries (sample sizes are cheap and don’t take up too much room), flashlight, batteries, weather radio, and extra cell phone.

Survive-a-Storm Shelters offers an electrical conduit as an optional feature, so talk to your representative about adding that to your order. Some people even “bury” a generator beside their shelter, so that they have electricity after a devastating tornado. This way you can keep a small “dorm” refrigerator in your shelter, as well as a spare cell phone charged up.

Your family’s safety is important, and that’s why you’ve installed a Survive-a-Storm shelter, but their health and overall well-being matter just as much. Simple preparations like these will ensure they’re kept relatively comfortable in the days after a natural disaster.

Click on this link for a supplies checklist from FEMA:

http://www.ready.gov/sites/default/files/documents/files/checklist_1.pdf