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Water, food, and clean air are the essential items for survival. Each family or individual's kit should be customized to meet specific needs, such as medications and infant formula. It should also be customized to include important family documents.
As a mother who has done Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts, I came along this neat idea to use film canisters. You can make an emergency kit for kids. Younger kids can have a Band-Aid or even several plus .50 cents for the emergency soda or popcorn. They spend their .50 cents and then have to replace it with money they earned.
Editor's Note: Film canisters have chemical residue from the film. Make sure that you keep that in mind when reusing them.
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Items to put in a power outage emergency kit for your home. Post your ideas.
Be sure in your power outage emergency kit you keep some "glowsticks" (the kind you "break" and they glow for 12 hours), especially if you have kids. They provide a distraction from the dark, keep the kids from running down the flashlight batteries by playing with the flashlights, and they are a kind of "tracking" system because you know where the kids are by seeing their glowstick.
Some come with a string to be worn about the neck. Also, having them taped to items easily lost in the dark (such as turned off flashlights or lighters) makes items easier to find. They give off a small amount of light, come in various colors, and are much much safer than candles or matches or lighters. I buy mine at the local 99 cent store in a 4 pack of assorted sizes.
I have taken and spray painted with glow in the dark paint my flash lights, and a box that I keep matches in so when it is dark since I keep these items out, they glow.
Goodness i buy candles of all kinds when they are on sale and get them as gifts. I can light up our entire split level and look like we have lights on. I also have 3 laterns we keep in the house that we use for camping.
Our Power Outage Emergency Kit
First Aid Kit.
Battery powered radio.
Flashlights for every family member.
Lots of extra batteries.
Extra flashlight bulbs.
Battery powered fan to keep air circulating.
Several gallons of bottled drinking water.
Manual can opener.
Non-perishable food: canned fruit, peanut butter, etc.
Crackers and cookies in sealed containers.
Pet food and treats. (They get frightened too.)
A couple of new toys.
An interesting novel.
No candles!! They're dangerous around pets and small children.
I freshen the basic Emergency Kit and add what's needed to it for each season.
We also have a flashlight in every room that plugs into an outlet. When the power goes out, the flashlights turn on automatically. We can then find the Emergency Kit that is "stored away in case we have a power outage". These flashlights can be found at any home improvement store and are relatively inexpensive.
Lots of spare batteries & bulbs for flashlights & lanterns. I keep candles on hand but when we use them we always
put them in stainless steel pots, that way if they tip over,nothing can happen.
Tool bag with enough tools to fix some simple things, nails & screws ,cordless drills with spare batteries,
1 cordless drill in 12vdc that I converted so you can hook it up to a 12v car battery.
Shovel ,axe, small pick, knives, machete, hammer, always have 1 bottle of propane full for the bbq.
These are some of the stuff that i keep along with your common 72hr kit . never know when you may have to build or reinforce your shelter.
Battery powered radio, tv, dvd player
Battery powered lanterns
Non rechargeable batteries enough for 3 sets per item
Battery powered push lights--one for each room in the house, including bathrooms
Foods that require no cooking or refrigeration
Lots of hand sanitizer
Cell phone with car charger
Kerosene heater with minimum of 10 gallons kerosene
Plenty of blankets
Plenty of things to do to prevent boredom
Full tank of gas in the car
Always try to get all devices to use the same size battery. Items that use "D" batteries typically last longer than "AA". "C" batteries may be next to impossible to locate during a crisis. Keep sufficient spare batteries for each device. Use LED lanterns/lights, or fluorescent lanterns.
Look for car chargers for NiMH batteries that plus into the lighter. Some can charge in as little as 15 minutes. Keep a cell phone charger for the car so you can charge your phone. Always keep a corded phone in your home. Most cordless phones don't operate without power (the base unit requires power).