Most people have never thought about preparing for disasters. Their thought process is usually, “It will never happen to me.” However, what about some everyday common emergencies that could present themselves when you least expect it? Would you be able to survive a relatively common emergency situation?
In January 2014, thousands of people were stranded on Atlanta area highways after snow caught the South unprepared. Thousands of drivers were hopelessly stuck for one day and then subsequently a second day on Wednesday January 29, 2014. Many drivers were stranded without food and water, on paralyzed interstates around Atlanta after a winter storm took the city by surprise. This is a very basic situation that caught many unprepared. Some people abandoned their cars altogether and walked to warmth and shelter. Would you be prepared for such a situation?
Three Basic Emergency Principles to Follow
There are three basic factors to keep in mind when preparing for disasters or an emergency situation. I am not talking about a 9/11 type event. Some of the most basic emergencies can wreak havoc on every day life. The following three points will keep you safe and sound in an event such as the surprise ice storm that hit the south in January of 2014.
1. You’ll need access to shelter within 3 hours should you have to abandon your vehicle.
2. You’ll need access to drinkable water.
3. You’ll need access to nutritionally viable food.
Without these basic staples, an emergency situation can become unbearable in no time at all and deadly over extended periods of time. For the purposes of this article, I will focus on an emergency that catches you off guard in your vehicle. After securing shelter from the elements and a source of clean water is available, food becomes your priority. Storing some shelf stable food in your car is an excellent idea and simple to do. One good short term option is the tried and true MRE, a “meal ready to eat.” These meals require no cooking, water or refrigeration.
Make sure that you have enough food and water for 1-2 days available for every member of the family. Don’t forget to take into consideration any special needs if you have any infants or individuals with special dietary needs in your family. If your pet regularly travels with you, don’t forget to take that into consideration as well.
Because you should store emergency food supplies in a cool, dry location at 40 -60 degrees, you need to take that into account during the different seasons. If you are going to store MRE’s during the winter months, consider storing the MRE’s that come with chemical heaters in case you need to warm up your food. If you have MRE components, make sure to follow the directions on the packaging for both storage and preparation.
Meals ready to eat (MRE) generally have a shelf life of up to five years. Make sure that you check dates on your food supply. Replace those that are close to expiring as needed. Lastly, don’t forget to include utensils. Even though stable food items are easy to store and prepare without the need for water, cooking or refrigeration, a fork and spoon always come in handy. Check out our full line of MRE meals from XMRE. All XMRE meals are made in the USA and are the highest quality MREs on the market.