Moving forward to identify 30 ways in 30 days for individuals and families to become better prepared for emergencies.
Remember that first responders may be overwhelmed in an emergency disatser environment, and may not be able to get to everyone right away. You need to plan to be largely self sufficient for 72 hours.
You are your family’s first responder!
Today I'll continue to share information about building and maintianing an Emergency Supply Kit, which will include the basic tools you'll need to survive in a disaster environment. Yesterday I addressed the need for water as part of your kit, today, I'll deal with another basic necessity:
Here are some things to consider when assembling emergency food supplies:
- Store at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food.
- Choose foods your family will eat.
- Remember any special dietary needs.
- Avoid salty foods that will make you thirsty.
- Choose salt-free crackers, whole grain cereals and canned foods with high liquid content.
Remember that in a post- disaster environment power outages may last for several days. Stock canned foods, dry mixes and other staples that do not require refrigeration, cooking, water or special preparation.
Be sure to include a manual can opener and eating utensils.
These are some items you may want to include:
- Ready-to-eat canned meats, fruits, vegetables and a can opener
- Protein or fruit bars
- Dry cereal or granola
- Peanut butter
- Dried fruit
- Canned juices
- Non-perishable pasteurized milk
- High energy foods
If you have very young children, don't forget food for infants
Also remember that without power food stored in refrigerators and freezers can become unsafe. Bacteria in food grow rapidly at temperatures between 40 and 140 °F, and if these foods are consumed, people can become very sick.
Some things to consider:
- Discard any food that has come into contact with contaminated floodwater.
- Discard any food that has been at room temperature for two hours or more.
- Discard any food that has an unusual odor, color or texture.
- Use ready-to-feed formula, if possible, for formula-fed infants. If using ready-to-feed formula is not possible, it is best to use bottled water to prepare powdered or concentrated formula. If bottled water is not available, use boiled water. Use treated water to prepare formula only if you do not have bottled or boiled water. Breastfed infants should continue breastfeeding.
- Don't Eat foods from cans that are swollen, dented or corroded, even though the product may look safe to eat.
- Don't Eat any food that looks or smells abnormal, even if the can looks normal.
I'll continue to outline items to include in your Emergency Supply Kit this week, but for today remember to put some thought into your family food needs as part of your kit.