Storm season has arrived here in Kansas. In fact the first real wave is set to be here this weekend. (Fingers crossed it doesn’t happen!) But it is best to be prepared just in case!
Up until this week if you asked me “Are you prepared?” The answer would have been NO! We had a plan and practiced the plan routinely. But it just wasn’t the best. You see, our house is old, has no basement, or even a room that is completely internal. All our rooms have outside walls and our closets are small so we can’t all get in them. So the “plan” was to huddle in the hallway. Last year we had a few close calls which prompted us to check out an alternative.
The old “plan” our hallway to huddle in.
We purchased a weather radio so that we could have as much warning as possible and also a scanner so that we could here real time information.
The next thing we did was research storm shelters. There are many options out there. We felt like and underground was the best option for us. So we called and placed the order! (we ordered in late Jan/early Feb) It arrived and was installed on Monday! Which was exciting for everyone. The kids loved seeing the machinery working and looking down into the deep hole they dug.
It’s here and installed!!!
The company (Midwest Storm Shelters) did some customization for us also. Due to my health and the possibility of having to get babies down there by myself I was uncomfortable with the ladder option. They helped us get a model with a stair case instead. It is still steep to get up and down but very do-able. Even the dog can go in and out easily after we got her to try it the first time.
Definitely go with the stairs!
I was worried about being claustrophobic down under ground in such a tight space but it is actually pretty roomy. Ours is 6×8 and my over 6 foot hubby can stand up comfortably.
The next order of business was to pack it with emergency kits!
Here is what we have in ours…
~ 1 change of clothes for each person
~ Extra shoes
~ Ponchos and jackets
~ If you had and infant or toddler you would also want to include diapers, wipes and formula
~ Copies of important papers such as: drivers license, birth certificate, passports, insurance info, etc…
~ Flash lights with extra batteries
~ A simple tool kit including pliers, small saw, wrenches, etc… to turn off gas or water lines in case a tornado hits.
~ Several gallons of water and cups
~ Snacks and canned goods
~ Dog food (yes, we are those people! The girls want to take the whole farm down with us haha)
~ Waterproof matches and fire starter
~ Camping canteen set
~ Battery and hook ups to charge cell phones, weather radio and scanner
~ A GOOD first aid kit including extra prescription medications that you may need
~Card games and toys for the kids
~A bucket lined with trash bags, toilet paper and wipes. (Yes a redneck potty!) With this many little ones it is better to be prepared then have and accident.
~We also have a stations set up inside of things to grab and go including the weather radio, scanner, walkie talkies, and my purse. We keep them together so they are easy and accessible to just grab and go.
~ We also have instructed the kids to get on their boots or tennis shoes NOT flip flops. Worst case scenario and the house gets hit you don’t want them exiting the shelter and getting hurt on debris.
Whatever your emergency plan is make sure to practice, practice, practice!
You never can be to prepared! You may not get a lot of time to move into action so the more familiar you are with the procedure the safer you will be!
What emergency preparedness tips do you have?
What do you have in your emergency packs?