THE PREPAREDNESS COACH

Coaching You Through Your Preparedness Journey

New Take on 72 Hour Kits!

A different Look

You know, after years of studying, preparing, more studying, and watching disaster after disaster, learning just what things need to be prepared for, I have some thoughts on 72 hour kits.  I really want to share these with you, because I think there are some things that really need to be stressed.  I believe there are some parts of the 72 hour kit that really need to be placed at the top of the priority lists. 

Yes, 72 hour kits are used mainly for evacuation purposes.  We have seen time and time again in the news, even in just the last few months, hundreds of thousands of people have been evacuated from their homes for various reasons.  Most of these people have had cars to evacuate with, and places to go.  Most of them didn’t have 72 hour kits.  A few small number of them did.  Many, many numbers of them left their homes, returning to find small amounts of their homes left, if any of it at all.

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What I believe we have learned the most important things regarding 72 hour kits are:

  1. They are not very often used to “save” lives.  Most people can get to help relatively quickly, and governments can have supplies rallied fairly quickly. It is, for the most part, easy to hop in a car and head out.  Even though stores in evac areas may not be working, others close by probably are.  Rarely are they actually used to save a life.  There may be that rare time, though so don’t save never, right?
  2. They serve two main purposes, as I can see:  these are, to bring some comfort during the rough transition of an evacuation, and to bring about the recovery process as quickly and painlessly as possible.  So how do we do this?
    1. To bring some comfort during the evacuation process, will vary according to your family needs, where
      A different Look

      The reasons you should have a 72 hour kit.

      you are evacuating to, and what the reasons are that you are evacuating.  You will need to have comfort foods, comfort games / books / distractions, a comfort toy for the kiddos, you know….  all the things that will help keep the stress level as low as possible.  Whatever this is for your family, I can’t dictate, but think it through carefully.  If you were stuck on a road, in a huge line of traffic, for 24 hours, what would you want to have in your kit?  If you had to camp out for a few days, regardless of where, waiting for the storm to pass, what would you want in your kit for comfort? 

    2. Now, the crisis has past, and you return to find your home either in a huge pile, or extreme flood damage, or completely gone.  How horrible this would be!  Millions have dealt with this scenario within just this past year alone.  Where do you even begin right?  Well you begin by contacting your insurance agency, because in your evacuation kit, you have a small portable hard drive.  On this hard drive, you have copies of all your insurance information, your important documents, a photo or video inventory of the important contents of your home, and of course your personal pictures and memorabilia.  You can begin the recovery process asap, because you have all of the information you need to deal with your insurance agency.  Others, well they have to go through the process of tracking down their insurance company, going through the process of remembering all of the possessions they had in their home, and stress upon stress it will take months, if not years to figure it all out.  But, because you are ahead of the game, you can rebuild, and re-establish normalcy as quickly as possible.

I think as we experience these disasters, and are learning and growing with each one, we find the purposes for many of our preparedness efforts.  They no longer are just a good idea, but have proven their value, and their purposes, time and time again.

To wrap it all up, and keep it brief, keep those two purposes of a 72 hour kit in mind as you prepare your family kits.  What is it that you need for comfort for your family?  What is it that you will need for your family to recover as quickly as possible?  What are the keepsakes that you need?  Pictures?  Memorabilia?  What will get you through the process?  I could give you lists, and have in other posts, but reality is, you need to personalize and adapt it to your family’s needs. 

Good luck, and God bless in your efforts.  We pray that the day will never come, that we will have to use our kits, but we prepare for that day, because the chances each day we live, are higher and higher.  Plan accordingly, and have a peace of mind that at least you can be prepared for that much. 

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