You don’t have to wait for September, National Preparedness Month or October, Earthquake Awareness Month,to be prepared for a disaster. It’s never too late!
If the thought of having to prepare seems like a disaster itself, read on! Below are 3 easy things you can do right now and 2 really important things you can do to set your mind at ease.
Imagine losing all your business data and equipment. Imagine being with no electricity or water for days. Not a fun thought is it? Hopefully this will never happen. We do live in the Bay Area though. Doing just a few things can make a difference. If you’ve ever had lost luggage at the airport, you know that feeling of ‘what’s in my suitcase that I can’t live without’. There is nothing like the reality of losing your things to help you realize what you really care about.
Three Easy Things
1. Have Water
Buy some big bottles of water (the one gallon bottles). Label them with the date. Put one per person in your car trunk. Put one per person in the back yard (you can include pets, too). That’s it! You can survive for awhile without most other things, but water is necessary.
2. Get a Bin, a Backpack and a Duffel Bag
Put the bin in your backyard. Put the backpack in a closet by a door. Put the duffel in the trunk. See below for what to do with them.
3. Have Food
While you are buying the water, buy some food. Some energy bars or other non-perishable food with a year shelf life. Put it in the duffel in your car trunk. Wouldn’t it be nice to have a blanket and flashlight too? Think about what would be great to have if you found yourself unable to get back home for awhile because of an earthquake.
While you’re at it, get two of the above and put it in that bin in the backyard. Add other things to it as you think of them. A flashlight and batteries. A tarp. Canned food and a can opener. A jacket. Imagine yourself unable to use your house for 3 days because of an earthquake. What would you want?
A Good List
I followed this disaster preparedness list from NAPO-SFBA when setting up my own supplies.
Two Important Things You’ll be Glad You Did
1. Copy Your Important Papers
Put a copy in that backpack in a closet or somewhere by a door. This is to grab on your way out in case of fire. Things like your insurance, phone numbers, credit card, driver’s license and bank card copies and passwords. Things that can help you establish your identity, make contacts and get to your money. Throw in an extra house and car key. I wouldn’t put this in your trunk or backyard though. While you’re at it, make two copies and put one in a safe deposit box.
2. Back Up Your Computer
Have a local back up (one in your home) and a backup to the cloud (outside of your home). If you had to re-establish your entire computer for your home or business, you want to be able to do it. Much of our life and business are digital now. It almost makes number one copy important papers) unnecessary if you have this one done.
Decide to do at least one thing this month. The things that made me feel best (besides water) were having my computer backed up and having things in my trunk. I have actually used my trunk supplies for a very hungry kid (cereal bars), a flat tire (gloves and flashlight), and sitting through a freezing cold baseball game (blanket)! Not exactly disasters, but it sure made the moment more bearable.
While you are out holiday shopping, get some supplies. Or put some of these items on your gift list. Once you have started, it’s easier to add to your supplies and maintain them. Be prepared for what matters most!
Need help getting prepared?
Contact me at 650.654.7827