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Thread: Unusual Types of Preparedness Kits?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2019

    Unusual Types of Preparedness Kits?

    So, preparedness kits usually run from those it is generally recognized that everyone should have (basic first aid kit, car bag, 72 hours worth of food and water, at a minimum) to those that no self respecting PREPPER would be without (bug out bag, get home bag, two weeks or more worth of food and water, et cetera) and of course small kits within kits, like a fire starting kit and sewing kit in a bug out bag.

    I am starting this thread to discuss any unusual types of preparedness kits people have come up with that fall outside of those basics, why you have them, and what you consider essential items for them. It can be kits for minor emergencies, or kits that address oft-neglected aspects of a full blown TEOTWAWKI scenario.

    I will go first with just one of my own (I like putting kits together)

    A few years ago I put together an "after tornado kit" focused on the fact that when we do get severe storms here they often come with a dramatic drop in temperature (80s and sunny to 40s and raining within the span of an hour, for example) and because the area is heavily wooded, can leave roads impassable for a few days. I put it together because I have had the experience of getting soaked before making it to the house, then coming out of the basement to cold rain, no electricity, impassable roads, and a lot of cleanup work. Fortunately, my house was still there so I was able to change into dry clothes, check fence-lines, make sure the neighbor's houses were still standing too, change in to dry clothes again, and have a hot meal before getting to work on cleanup. My after tornado kit is focused on things we would need that day or the next if the house was NOT there, and is as much about comfort, morale, and helping everyone deal with the shock as it is about literal life and death survival. (Important legal documents, irreplaceable photos, et cetera are a separate issue in my mind, and could be dug out of the rubble later if stored in the basement file cabinet, or copies retrieved from a trusted relative's home.) The "after tornado kit" is small enough to grab and climb out with, and is stored in the "storm bunker" part of the basement, where we take shelter. It includes:

    -Warm clothes
    -Rain gear
    -Dry socks
    -Boots or shoes - reasonably warm and waterproof, but just an old pair (I spent no money putting this kit together)
    -A single, small blanket
    -A small, very basic first aid kit
    -A hot breakfast (oatmeal) for the first morning after
    -A hot dinner (canned soup) for the first evening after (I let each member of the household choose their own and write their name on it - we can cook them up one at a time in the same pot.)
    -Can opener
    -Camping bowls, spoons, mugs
    -Relaxing herbal teas
    -Enough coffee to make a big pot and share with the whole neighborhood (they will need their own mugs, though)
    -Said big enamel coffee pot
    -A saucepan for cooking breakfast and dinner/heating tea water
    -A small can stove, with enough dry fuel for at least the first few uses
    -Matches and lighters
    -Canned dog food to help any animals currently in the household or caught as strays after the storm drink enough water during a stressful time
    -Pet dishes
    -Spare collar and leash for tying up the spare dog that inevitably shows up lost after any storm (once it was a horse, but I don't have a spare halter and lead for the kit, so would just have to make do somehow.)
    -Two flashlights that let's face it, probably won't work when we need them
    -Candles for a more reliable source of light/a bit of heat for warming hands
    -A whistle in case we are trapped in the basement under rubble
    -A "We're okay back here - no help needed" sign for the end of our very long driveway through the woods, so emergency workers don't waste time trying to clear it and reach us.

    Should probably include but doesn't:
    -A good tent
    -Sleeping bags for every member of the household

    Since I was both putting this together from things we had around the house, and trying to keep it reasonably compact, certain bulky items had to be left out. For shelter I would count on finding something to use - maybe the house is gone but barn or shed still standing, one of our cars made it through undamaged, or a neighbor within walking distance still has a house and lets us sleep there the first night. Even in the worst case scenario, their should be debris like metal roofing lying about that we could rig into a simple overhead shelter.

    Oh, and if anyone is wondering why I've left out the obvious - water - it's because we would have a reliable source of it here even after a tornado.

    Have you come up with your own unusual kits? Please share!
    The more you know, the less you need.

  2. #2
    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    The only preparedness kit I have completed is my “Legacy” bag, discussed on another thread. Just contains all of our important papers except passports. It is intended for our executor/trustee, but we can grab it and go in an emergency.

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    I have lost power in the house many times, a fondue pot with sterno is really helpful. You can make tea (can't survive without tea!) Other than that I have a second checking account that get $50 a month in it in case anything happens with my primary account like losing the card or banking problems. I have had my last pair of glasses and an older inhaler handy, all my kid and I have had asthma.

    Our preparedness has changed quite a bit in different states. In the mountains of Colorado we put at least 2 weeks of food in the freezer, had wood for the fireplace and didn't worry about water. If we lost power it was because of snow so we could melt and filter it. In California we had water and canned goods, the power loss and brown outs were often in the summer. Also everything was sealed in plastic. Now I am in the city, so I make sure I have cash and a few ways to get money, water, and canned foods. In each case I have an extra good first aid kit.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Teacher Terry's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    I have never had one.

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    I've had a small grab and go back (and one for each of the family members) for years. Even now that the kids are grown, they still each have one. I also have a small one in each of the cars - all are backpacks for traveling/walking if necessary. They all should probably be gone through and updated. Have had them a long time and probably need to check on batteries, etc. Thanks for the reminder!
    To give pleasure to a single heart by a single act is better than a thousand heads bowing in prayer." Mahatma Gandhi

    Be nice whenever possible. It's always possible. - Dalai Lama

  6. #6
    Senior Member bae's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    I have a lot of various kits, for various circumstances: power outages, wildfire, wind storms, snow storms, earthquake, invasion by tourists.

    The one I have in a bag in my truck which is perhaps well outside the normal envelope is my "Ebola bag". I'm on our infectious disease control team - we handle patient monitoring and transport for folks with "really bad" things, like Ebola. The bag consists of:

    - water
    - power bars
    - biohazard suit: about a dozen sets of nitrile gloves, overgloves, boots, boot liners, boot covers, two sets of scrubs, two of the tyvek-like suits, masks, face shield, duct-tape for sealing things up, male external catheter, clipboard, forms, pens, checklists, ...
    - disinfecting agents, pads, hazmat trash bag
    - warning tape
    - spare batteries for radios and other gear

  7. #7
    Senior Member herbgeek's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    New England
    I too have lots of kits. Most are not for disaster scenarios, but those items that make life more comfortable. In the car I have stuff to sleep comfortably overnight and heat food. I have pocket kits with Advil, bandaids, bobby pins, earplugs and that sort of thing. I also have a portable picnic kit with glasses, knife, cutting board, salt and pepper, napkins...

  8. #8
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Quote Originally Posted by bae View Post
    I have a lot of various kits, for various circumstances: power outages, wildfire, wind storms, snow storms, earthquake, invasion by tourists.
    tourists! that must be an interesting kit. I wonder what I would include?

    I have my backpack ready for basic meditation hiking. It includes the regular hiking gear, a TP kit, a notepad, and an inflatable pad from REI for sitting.

  9. #9
    Did I miss it, Tea. I didn’t see any mention of firearms, ammo, wristwatch and knives.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2019
    It is interesting reading about the different areas different people focus on in terms of preparedness.

    Zoe Girl - The fondue pot and Sterno sound like a clever combination. I am fortunate in that my regular kitchen stove doesn't use electricity at all, so as long as my house is still standing, my cooking options are barely even effected by power outages. The oven is the only thing in my kitchen that uses electricity, and that's only for the thermostat. In a pinch I can set it on broil, and regulate the temperature manually by turning it on and off. The longest power outage we've experienced in this house lasted seventeen days (after a winter ice storm) and the longest summer power outage was eight days. Given where we live, we've been careful to structure things so electricity is a convenience and not a necessity! I also liked your idea of having a second checking account.

    bae - Well, an Ebola kit definitely counts as unusual! Though given your job it makes perfect sense. Please clarify, do you actually have a tourist invasion kit? Maybe it was a voice to text mistake or something and you have a terrorist invasion kit. . . If it is tourist what's in it? The only thing coming to my mind is mosquitoes to loose on them to make them go home and quit annoying the locals

    herbgeek - Your picnic kit sounds lovely - do you keep it in your car in case of impromptu picnics, or is it just what you pack when planning a picnic?

    Williamsmith - What am I going to do, shoot the tornado for destroying my home? I live in a small rural community that comes together wonderfully during any short-term emergency, and this is not an apocalypse or long term wilderness survival kit. The more cut off from the outside world we are, the LESS worried we need to be about crime, and the last thing I would want to have to worry about would be someone's child getting a hold of the gun in the kit while my back was turned. Nor would being stored in a somewhat damp basement be good for a gun in the first place. No wrist watch either - working wind-up wrist watches are hard to find these days, and the few we have are packed away in BOBs. The tornado kit is just meant to keep everyone comfortable for a day or two, during which our cell phones would still have power if we for some reason really need to know the time. There is actually a knife in the tornado kit though, thanks for reminding me! I forgot to list an entire small tool kit consisting of:
    -A sturdy hunting knife
    -Folding saw
    -Bailing twine
    -A box of nails

    Obviously I would hope we would still have access to an entire basement with lots of additional tools, but the kit is just a few basics in case debris makes going in and out of the basement unsafe.
    The more you know, the less you need.

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