Monday, October 1, 2012

Bushcraft Kits - Extreme Survival Gear

A Bushcraft kit contains tools for surviving off the land in very primitive surroundings and harsh conditions


Think extreme survival gear and tools on a small enough scale that you can carry them in addition to a 72 hour kit.

The basic 72 hour kit is great if you had to bug out to a shelter in your area. These shelters are not a place you would want to have weapons or gear such as an axe or firestarting materials. The smaller area you and your gear take up the more people can be housed in in the shelter. Emergency shelters are for situations such as a hurricane, tornado, or an earthquake taking your neighborhood off of the map.
Sort out emergency gear into sets for mild or extreme emergencies.

We all know we should pack and have ready a 72 hour or bug out kit. These kits are designed and personalized to contain what we need to feed and clothe ourselves for approximately 3 days in the event of a disaster. Having food, water, first aid supplies, a bed roll, and a change of clothes is in the ideal bug out kit and are for general purposes. The basic necessities in these kits aren't something that need to take up a lot of space.

But what about the other gear you might want to consider?
Video: How To Use An Axe For Bushcraft

In a Bushcraft kit we need to be ready to do some hunting, foraging, and fishing.

Two items that come to mind are a buck (or bowie) knife and an axe (or hatchet). 


These two tools are something that would not be allowed in a shelter but are necessities in roughing it and setting up camp in the great outdoors. 


In addition to these tools also consider packing a standard mess kit like the ones the scouts use. It takes up very little space and packs neatly into itself.

Don't forget a set of utensils!


Bushcraft Kit Supplies:

Supplies such as a few yards of rope and twine can be invaluable for things like lashing together branches for a lean-to or tie down a tent in windy conditions. Twine can be handy for making a primitive bow or lashing sticks together. It can also be used for making animal traps. 

Suggested list for a basic Bushcraft kit:

Axe or Hatchet
Buck Knife
Fillet knife w/ knife sharpener
Magnesium Firestarter
A small fishing tackle box
Mess kit
Utensil Set
A small tent
Small shovel or trowel

Bushcraft tools and supplies in a portable kit can be an essential life saving set in the event of an extreme emergency OR maybe just an impromptu camping trip. Keep your skills fresh and tools handy!

There are other things I am sure I am leaving out but this list is basic enough to get you started. If you have any suggestions on what to put in a Bushcraft kit or would like to list the contents of your kit, feel free to post it!

Thanks for visiting! =)

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

What is Bushcraft?

Bushcraft is the skill set you would use in a survival situation either in wilderness or even in a shelter at home situation.


Bushcraft skills include...

Firecraft - the ability to create and maintain a fire without matches

Tracking - knowing what signs to look for animals in the wild

Hunting - the knowledge of not only taking an animal for food but knowing how to dress and butcher the meat for consuming.

Fishing - an obvious skill and one of my favorites!

Other very helpful Bushcraft skills include:

  • Shelter Buildin
  • Tools Use - knives and axes 
  • Foraging
  • Hand-carving wood
  • Container Construction - using natural materials for baskets, storage, etc.
  • Rope and Twine-making

These are important skills essential to the maintenance of human life. Bushcraft skills are generally learned in Scouting Programs early and are a part of military survival training. Add these skills to your emergency preparedness planning list for the event you may have to use them!


Related sites: 

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Preppers - Urban Legend OR Urban Myth?

Preparedness and emergency planning is what makes the difference in your being an urban myth or an urban legend. 

Let me site some experiences to help you relate to the difference.

Donner Party - Allposters ~ Affiliate Permissions
Donner Party ~ Image: Allposters

When the Donner Party headed across the plains they ignored strong advice to avoid the pass in the mountain now named for their fateful planning. In the cold of winter they found themselves trapped in crippling snow and ice facing a dreadful situation. In their lack of planning they resorted to cannibalism.

To me this lack of proper planning leaves them in my category of urban myth


They did not survive well!

More on The Donner Party Here

An Urban legend would be someone that has planned well and fortified themselves to withstand any crisis or disaster such as the scenes from this video:

Is this the category you fit into?

Who would qualify as an urban legend?

Image Credit: MorgueFile
Modern preppers who have thought out their emergency list and the reasons and actions for planning are to me urban legends. These folks understand the ins and outs of preparedness and have placed their resources accordingly. They plan for sheltering in place for situations that would allow that and have put up a food storage and a supply of goods to carry them through these difficulties. They have also set aside equipment for supplying energy to their homes in the event the power grid goes down or some other calamity shuts off the electricity supply to their homes. They also have plans for defending their shelters. They garden, they stock and preserve foods and they go about their lives in regular routines but always on guard for trouble or additional ideas for emergency planning.

Image Credit: MorgueFiles
In the even of a disaster that would require an evacuation, these preppers have that planned out as well. They have set aside food, water, and supplies in 72 hour kits and have stock ready to go in their homes and their vehicles if needs be. Traveling on foot in a situation where they cannot use a vehicle is also on the list of emergency plans. Inside these kits are cooking gear, small tents or hammocks, first aid supplies and various tools and supply to aid in surviving in a wilderness setting. I can assure you most of them are trained to confront hazards that may be present on the road to safety.

Plan for emergencies today!


Get your list, plans, and supplies together for preparedness and consider your family urban legends!


Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Preppertalk - Preparedness NOW not weapons later

Preparedness means taking care to stock foods and other useful supplies for your family NOW before the event of a disaster or crisis. Weapons or other home defense tactics usually are in the planning. There are plenty of sites online that discuss tactics. This blog is for more light topics but I had to touch on this subject so that others who aren't aware of this can be on the alert.

I have a side business where preparedness is part of my sales pitch. I ask people if they do food storage or if they even have a 72 hour kit. Preppertalk is part of my routine when I am not at my full time job.

A few times I had folks tell me they are going to find people that are prepped and take their stuff. They get a little dark when they go into their "battle plan". I laugh at them. For one don't they understand? Folks who prep usually have a defense plan in place and it's going to take a bigger idiot than them to even see the food or supplies stocked away.

More about it here: Preparedness is NOT Pillaging on

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Preparedness 123 Week In Review: July 23rd to July 29th 2012

I thought it would be a great idea to summarize and review the preparedness topics from this week in July. Depending on the amount of posts entered I may do this on a weekly or bi-monthly basis.

Preparedness topics covered for July 23 to July 29 2012

From Prep 1 2 3

First Aid Training
There was a need to update the article about first aid and add information about proper training. There is a deep sense of responsibility I feel when it comes to first aid training and who should actually administer itExpanded with some added information including a Minnie Mouse video showing her first aid practices! First aid training kits and supplies...

Preparedness And Pets
I asked some of my prepper friends on Facebook what kind of animals they had and what were their emergency prepareness plans for their furry (or feathered) friends. See the responses here: Preparedness for your pets...

Protecting Our Families
There are many ways to prepare your family. Firearms are good but they aren't always going to be available. Seek to be trained and think about other things you can do to protect your family.
The spirit of preparedness - Self Defense...

Catch up with all of our activity 
on Prep 1 2 3 & it's sister sites:



From Survival Recovery on Wordpress

Website: updated!

Are there any topics you would like to know more about?

Thursday, July 26, 2012

What plans do you have for your pets in emergency preparedness?

I am an animal lover and the thought of not being able to take my pets with me bothers me. 

I don't have normal pets like a dog or a cat. I have guinea pigs. 

Now, if they were rabbits, I would find a way to bring them with me so they could be considered a food source. I know that Cavy's (guinea pigs) are a food source in some countries but I wouldn't have the heart to do that to my beloved Ms Jesse or Ms. Sunny.

I asked this question in a couple of groups and it triggered some very interesting answers.

Read on:

(edited for privacy and relevancy)

Question: How are we going to plan prep for our pets? In the event of evac I have 2 guinea pigs which unfortunately will NOT be coming with me. 

What are your plans and what kind of pets do you have? 

Saw an episode of Doomsday Preppers that a gal mentioned her cats and their plan was not pretty.. =(

2 Conversations on Facebook

The responses from first group were as follows:

  1.  What could you do for them, other then let them out if its not dead of winter? If you can't feed them ?..
  2. cats will survive anything My dog however will go with me and eat what ever we can conger up for him. he will be a good assest as an early warning device..
  3. Unfortunately they will have to be euthanized... =( the lil buggers are too noisy and fragile to bring on a run..
  4. You must teach your dog to hunt his own food now. Not sure how you'd do that.
  5. Dogs would be great w/ a bug out if they know how to be quiet.
  6. Counting on some Zombie Meet..just a leg or two every now and
  7. meat
  8. Uh-oh! Kiddos don't know how to be quiet.
  9. I would tranq them then put em under. When I saw that show it broke my heart thinking bout my girls. But I can't feel right leaving them to die anyways..
  10. My girls = my guinea pigs btw
  11. Most dogs have a natural intinct to hunt.. but being gun shy isn't .
  12.  Ooops Instinct..
  13. Thank goodness they aren't people girls. You scared me there for a bit.
  14. A dog would be a great security device, that's for sure.
  15. Or Alert other hungy people to you.. and that would be bad..
  16. Mine are all stayin with me. I've put up vacuum sealed rations for them to last a long time
  17. lol I saw that xxx... no am talking bout the pets. My kids ALWAYS go with me... no matter what. This has me thinking though, we really do have to think out plans for every consideration and scenario... what if is a big question!
  18. Ya our dog don't like to let Momma out of his site. so he would go to location "C" while i fight off the Bad Guys..
  19. I still have no specific location. Am a loner and my daughter we are it. Dad's house isn't too far but I have thought about where do I jump to from here in the city. Got ideas about gettting to the hills which will led me to xxx...
  20. and I doubt a guinea pig would survive that hike
  21. how big
  22.  lol they are about 2 pounds each. I dont wanna eat em either but if we stay in shelter at home ummm =/ ewwwww
  23. As a beginning prepper, this is something I really haven't given much thought to. I know our dog would go with us no matter what. I'd like to take the cat, but that might not be a possibility. She's a good hunter though, so I know she would have at least a fighting chance. My sons turtle would have to be set free. I'm not sure what we would do with the Guinea Pigs. Even though they are a common food source in Peru, I don't think I could eat them.We raise goats, chickens and rabbits as a food source. Whatever couldn't come with us would have to be used as food. Ideal would be to have a bug out location where we could house at least a mating pair of each species. I can see this is something I need to give more thought to.
  24. a Cat thats Not Declawed will indeed survive as long as small critters are around for it to catch.. mice ect.. cats will survive in the wild .. where the Dog won't on its own.. thus the reason for dogs to Pack up..
That was one group's response. 
Let's see what Group Two had to say...
  1. It's an ugly piece of the puzzle. That being said The xxx and the cat from hell will in tow.
  2. Off to the woods they go. Sorry no room or food for pets. If I have to bug out. My plan is to stay put. Cows and chickens will become the new pets.
  3. I would have to put my guinea pigs down
  4. Could make a few sandwiches
  5. my little dogs dont eat much they are my babys i would keep them as long as possible even to the fact i would share my serving size food with them but thats me
  6. My piggies are spoiled, I mean I could bring em with me. They would eat grasses. Could pack their pellets in a container and their water bottles. But I have to stuff em in a carry along bag lol
  7. We have a bug-out-bag for our cat and dog with enough food and water for a little more than 2 weeks (our B-O-B have the same supply of food and water). The pet B-O-B also contain food dishes and a water dish (they share the same water dish), a couple of toys, leashes, harnesses, and poop bags. We also have a carrier for the cat. Their B-O-B is stocked and ready to grab and go just like ours are.
  8. our dog has his own bug out bag and bug in supplies....we keep adding to his stash just like our own - he is a member of our family as important as any one of us. He also is trained in many ways and his skills will be a big asset for us.
  9. Dogs, gots and selected rabbits in portable cages come as they are all part of the plan. Food and suplies can be on the road with ud in a matter of minutes, dogs and rabbits not a problem, goats well, might be trickier, but the nanny and one billy have to come, but I'm not goin anywhere anyway.
  10.  I have room for one, one only . I cannot let them loose , that is why I rescued them in the first place. (dog) packs pillaging the neighborhoods are a bit the (dog) comes, as she is Essential Security Staff... the rest.. tacos.
  11. (link to this info) Food! At the moment they have about 3 - 4 months of food along with remedies and supplements for them. They also have a stash of catnip for stress relief/recreation. hehe I am currently working on stocking more food for them. I would like to have at least 6 Months worth. ASAP
  12. I plan to eat my pets. I mean why waste resource on something that is a resource.
  13. My dogs go where I go. They are my kids. Preps include them.
  14. If you consider your pets family or children, then prep for them the same as for your human family and children. 3-6+ months of food, water supply, any medications they need and continue to stock up and rotate their supplies just like your own.
  15. Animals are for eating. I had a pet rabbit once when I was little and my dad told me not to play with my food
  16. Unless the animal has a skill. It would be a burden on resource. Plus any other person roaming around will probably try to make a meal out of it anyways.
  17. I have a supply of dog food but part of the plan for my two dogs is kangaroo jerky or any feral I can trap.
  18. food.

In closing it is a mixed bag here. I'd say half of the pet owners will prep for their pets. From the advice shown here if you are a dog or a cat owner, setting aside 3 to 6 months of rations for your animal is a great idea. This is provided you are able to safely shelter at home. If you have to evacuate, things drastically change tune. Think about what you will have to put that animal through and really ponder this question.

(all Images: Morguefile)

What preparedness plans do YOU have for your pets in emergency?

      Monday, July 23, 2012

      The Spirit of Preparedness - Self Defense

      The spirit of preparedness is that little voice that tells you to make plans for unexpected events. 

      A statement from trusted leaders my faith tells us to 

      Prepare Every Needful Thing


      In accepting this advice thoughts and ideas have been put into action in our home through learning activities and gathering. 

      In planning the needs of our family we seek a comfortable, livable arrangement no matter the surroundings by understanding what we need to go through a normal day even under abnormal conditions. 
      We certainly need supplies to help us eat, intake fluids, wash, and rest.
      Prepare every needful thing applies to our knowledge base as well as our supply list.

      That knowledge should include self-defense. 

      Though the threats of the unknown are not visible in the planning stages we  need to analyse where our preparing has us covered. Develop survival skills and certain engineering skills in order to make ourselves ready for events which require us to adapt to our surroundings or circumstances. 
      Are we sheltering in place and what may happen if we stay in our home. Drills in preparedness have got to include many what ifs for them to be successful when it is time to use our skills. 

      In your planning for scenarios, ask these questions:

      • What area of our home can we consider and set up as a safe room?
      • What if... we are the target of looters?
      • What if... the home we are in needs to be our safe zone in area riots?
      • What do we do if... people attempt to break into our home?
      • What do we do with our children and how do we teach them to follow us without frightening them?*

      Seek ways to cover our needs in all areas.  Protecting our homes and surroundings may come into reality. What can we use to help our family defend itself? This can be a practical conditioning in our minds if we think the extreme something is going to happen. This is along the lines of preparing what to do for a car accident or applying first aid. Without being a supreme paranoid think through some of the scenes in today's headlines. What will you do in a situation occurring in your life?

      Preparing for anything can be done if we put aside normal times vs. survival mode necessities.

      Video on self defense methods presented by Ruger:

      What I found interesting about this video is the advice given of using anything that is available as a weapon, not just a firearm. Prepare ourselves for facing attackers completely. Not having to rely on any specific weapon is very important. This involves looking around our home and thinking about things that you can use in this manner. We may not have a firearm or ammunition within reach.

      Self-defense courses should be on our agenda for times we may face a hand to hand life threatening challenge. Marksmanship skills need to be developed so we may properly and safely discharge a firearm in the event we need to use a gun for hunting or self-defense. Archery skills should be learned and practiced to accompany this skill set. Videos: How to Make a Bow and Arrow 
      Additional methods of defense is wise information. 
      We should know how to use slings, bows, knives, and misc. weapons in circumstances where we may have to defend our lives and in a severe social meltdown that might involve rioting or looters, and violent people. Video: Hornet Spray in Self Defense

      Ideally taking a self defense course for regular exercise is the best way to learn defense techniques. 
      Videos4 Easy Self defense Techniques and Self Defense Technique Against Multiple Attackers 
      The knowledge we learn is more important than the supplies in a bug out bag or in our homes.

      In the spirit of preparedness I seek what I need to save a life. My own or those that I love and care for.

      Related info: Survival Skills Hollywood Style on Squidoo
      Movies that can hep us in planning the what if's in emergency preparedness...

      Monday, July 16, 2012

      Plan Ahead - Prepping For Natural Disasters

      When you plan ahead for the event of a natural disaster you can work through the devastation that accompanies these emergencies.

      Tornado - Iowa ~ Image Allposters - Affiliate Permissions

      Emergencies like a tornado can take everything away in a blink of an eye. Planning for disasters is more than putting a stockpile of goods away in your home pantry.

      Creating a back up plan and put your mind into focus on What If scenarios makes you a healthy survivor... not a crisis victim.

      Pre-plan not only what and where your meals are going to come from but how are you going to find help and what are you going to do in the event of a major event happening in your life.

      Do you have the skills and mindset you need to gather and set up a workable after disaster living situation? 

      In the video this area of Joplin Missouri was totaled. The homes were left as piles of timber, rubble,  and trash. Could you ride the aftermath of this phenomenon out until help is found or arrives?

      Put your skills down on paper and list what you might have to know in order to remain sane after an event of this kind. Now list the skills you want to know about. We face these kinds of weather patterns all over the United States anymore. Floods, fires, and earthquakes can cause similar extreme damage to our living situations. Civil unrest can do this, too.  

      The aftermath of an event like this can leave your family without power, fresh water, food, and certain comfort items such as clean clothing and a comfortable bed! Put an emergency kit together for your vehicle that may assist you in the event one of these nasty situations occur. Your vehicle may take a battering better than your home and you may not have to dig those items out of rubble as long as you still are able to locate the key to your trunk!

      If I were to plan a recovery for this kind of a scene, my first priority is our family's safety. Is it a safe  enough area to stay here? Are there any hazards that need to be dealt with such as downed power lines or gas pipes? Are we going to need to defend ourselves where we are or are we going to have to move to a safer location? 

      The second skill I know I would need is an ability to set up a shelter. Whether it is setting up a tent for myself and a few family members or create a shelter our of the scavenged items. Setting up a lean to or a "fort" as we called em as kids. I know I am going to need a shelter for resting. I know I need water and food. We need a safely considered fire pit and fuel for cooking and warmth. I will need a way to dispose of waste, so we need to establish an area for a latrine. In a separate area I will need away to prepare foods and wash my face and hands. There may be a need for first aid. Do I have this knowledge ahead of the disaster? 

      If you went through a scouting program, you may be one of the lucky ones who had this kind of information given to them early. I highly recommend getting a scouting manual for your survival library. Inside the cover of these books is the life saving techniques and hand reference materials that you will need to ride out any kind of a situation. The basics taught in these handy books are

      Video: CNN: Tornadoes, Survivors and the Urgent Need for Disaster Preparedness

      This video puts enough fear in me to know that what I am constantly working on improving may be a wise decision. I am confident our supplies are sufficient even on the small scale that we can plan. I would rather face the possibilities I will never use these items than endure a devastation without them.

      In the video I noticed a person holding a shovel and facing the destroyed home they once knew. Although I doubt there is much that they can do with this small tool against this wreck of a home, they can put it to use in several ways. Dig a fire pit, a latrine, and trench a shelter to steer water away from the temporary living area. It can also be used to remove hazards to a pile away from foot traffic.

      For a few ideas, gather items from the list below:

      72 hour kit for the car trunk:

      Work Gloves
      Small Tent
      Portable Radio
      Water - Store a couple of 3 gallon water containers. At LEAST one per person
      MRE's - store at least 2 meals per family member for about 3 days worth
      Dry foods - Items that may not evaporate or be contaminated from the heat of your car trunk may be handy foods for times of this nature. Dry soups and quick pastas need hot water to prepare and are minimal sustenance but they are better than going hungry. Something in the belly is a simple comfort on the mind.
      First Aid Kit
      Toilet paper
      Change of Clothing
      Bedrolls / Sleeping bags
      Bleach - at last a gallon 
      Extra pair of shoes

      There are many other things I could list but these are some of the basics of human necessity. Are you ready to get started?

      Helpful resources and links:

      Tuesday, July 10, 2012

      Quest For Clean Water in Emergency Prep - Using Hydrogen peroxide for treatment

      In a personal quest for clean, fresh drinking water while preparing for emergency several ideas surface such as using Hydrogen Peroxide to treat water. 

      In emergency situations our drinking water sources may not be potable water standards and that means safe water treatment processes must be considered.

      Safe clean water can be produced in several ways. People drinking bad drinking water from unclean sources may suffer needlessly from water borne diseases and related illnesses.

      Please Note: We must be very, very cautious when it comes to anything we ingest into our bodies.

      In seeking our reliable information on the subject of drinking water processing many of the methods and ideas of chemical based processes and filtering have come into play. Tried and true methods of boiling and adding bleach were some of the top items in my search. 

      Some very strange items have come about, too, that seem to be nothing but urban myths! 

      A quest like this can be a rewarding in a thirsty adventure! 

      From:Survival Recovery on Wordpress
      By RiaB

      Using Hydrogen Peroxide (H2O2) to purify water

      Medicinal Hydrogen Peroxide
      Medicinal Hydrogen Peroxide
      Hydrogen Peroxide (H2O2) may be used in water treatment process for creating purified water in emergency disaster situations. How to get clean water is a high priority in preparing for any emergency. The h20 structure is changed with the addition of Hydrogen Peroxide.
      Hydrogen Peroxide sold over the counter for medicinal purposes is generally 3 – 6% diluted solution.
      Adding Hydrogen Peroxide to water produces oxygenated water and can be considered safer than the use of chlorine bleach in a water treatment process. Eliminating the factor of water borne diseases and illnesses by removing harmful contaminants such as bacteria, chemicals, and reintroducing oxygen to create safe drinking water.
      Hydrogen Peroxide has been introduced as a first aid and household cleaning staple for many years. It’s uses are (More...)

      Finding usable water sources is tough enough without having to worry about how to make it drinkable. The right information like Using Hydrogen Peroxide (H2O2) to purify water can provide us with sound methods we will need to know in the event we have to rely on these instructions. Our lives and the health and welfare of our family may depend on it!

      More preparedness tips at:

      Image: M Burgess

      Friday, July 6, 2012

      Readiness and Mental Prepareness

      What is readiness and mental preparedness?

      The idea of being materially and nutritionally prepared is awesome but if you are not mentally prepared in your mind's eye the panic and stress of crisis may undermine everything you have gathered for. 

      Be mentally prepared by seeking out ways to become as self-sufficient as possible in any circumstance.

      Drills for emergency are important. They keep the skills and ideas you must rely on fresh. Practice the techniques in the article below for starters. This is why a camp out is not just for fun. It is also an exercise in readiness. Planning to exist outside the box of normal operation is part of being a prepper.

      I am inclined to recommend some meditation techniques in addition with the tips from the article below. But that is going to be another post. Being able to center in chaos is important to keeping you one step ahead of whatever disaster you may be in. Practice these mental preparedness techniques regularly to be certain you can do this when you need it.
      It won't matter how much food you have or how many guns you have or how deep your bunker is if you are a basket case in the center of your crisis.

      From: Absolute Rights Contributor

      Becoming Mentally Prepared For Anything
      by Absolute Rights Contributor | Jun 29, 2012 | Categories: Crisis Ops.
      by ‘Above Average’ Joe

      You have your Ultimate Bug out Bag and you’re ready to ride out whatever comes your way, sitting in front of your generator powered air conditioner… So you’re prepared right?


      You can have all of the gear in the world, but without the correct mindset, you’re no better off than the average unprepared citizen.  One of my mentors told me something that really struck a chord with me.  He said,

      “You never want to be doing anything for the first time… when you need it to save your life”

      This phrase has stuck with me over the years.  Do you really want to rely on what you THINK you know, or would you rather rely on what you KNOW you can do?   I cannot stress enough how important mental preparedness is in a survival situation.  Losing your cool during the stress of a disaster is the first step towards failure.  Below are a few  tips on how you can hone your mental preparations to help you adapt to just about any survival situation.

      • Turn off all electronic devices for 24 hours at a time, this includes cell phones, TV’s air conditions etc. Use this as both a preparation for when you do not have power and a conservation technique for if you choose to run a generator, so that you can see how to survive on only the essentials.
      • Become accustomed to receiving and retaining information from print sources such as books. The internet will not be available in a disaster.
      • Spend some nights using only candles and or battery operated lights to illuminate the darkness.
      • Begin storing rainwater and spend a few days using only stored water.
      • Try cooking some of your meals using a solar oven, barbecue, fire pit or any other primitive or improvised cooking method.
      • If you have damaged clothing, practice trying to repair it instead of (more...)

      Practice readiness drills in every way, shape, and form. Adding these routines with a focus on mental preparedness helps your overall survival to be more successful. Pre-plan any eventual possibility so that when an incident does happen YOU ARE READY!

      By reviewing and planning the many ways you can be self-sufficient you can better prepare yourself in more ways than stocking food, water, emergency equipment, and defensive tools.

      Video on items you might need for emergency situations and mental preparedness for every member of your family:

      Mental readiness skills in every form should be on your task list! 

      Additional Related Material: Survival Recovery on Wordpress

      (updated 07/21/2012)

      Wednesday, July 4, 2012

      Preparedness - Communication Devices

      Useful preparedness emergency skills include communication. 

      Having a radio or even a simple whistle in your emergency kit aids you in connecting with other survivors. It also can help alert another that you are in trouble or danger. In a hiking area where a climber is stuck or stranded and out of visual range, a simple whistle sound can lead rescuers to the fallen hiker. This can also apply also to anyone trapped in debris. That small, shrill tone may just save your life. Pack this with your preparedness emergency kit.

      Mirror reflections and smoke signals are a way of communicating on a primitive level. Signal flags are used in many situations to broadcast information. Learning the basic language of Morse code is a great skill to have. Many people have been rescued using the simple S.O.S. signal after being trapped in debris. They apply it by tapping on a pipe or wall to cause a patterned noise repeating the code. This  pattern helps to alert rescuers.

      Sign language and hand signals are useful in times when you may have to remain quiet or when you are in a situation that is extremely noisy and talking or other ways of communicating is not possible such as incidents of high winds or heavy storm activity.

      A radio that receives news or weather reports is an essential part of preparedness planning with in your 72 hour kit. A simple radio to an Am station with local weather and news can alert you to climate changes and announcements to help assess safety.

      Using radio codes is part of the language of broadcasting over the airways.

      Broadcasting safe zones or even hazards would greatly assist anyone in a radio signal's area. Radios can be used to set up a perimeter system or even alert others to danger. In the movie I Am Legend, Will Smith's Character, Dr. Robert Neville set up a repeating signal to let possible survivors know there was help available in the area by programming a repeating message on a radio broadcast.

      For a more advance communication system, two way radios or a CB radio can connect you with others who can assist you or the other way around, need your help. 

      In this article on emergency preparedness drills,  Ham radio operators practice setting up an emergency radio station.

      Radio Equipment ~ Image: MorgueFiles
      Ham radio operators use Field Day event to test emergency readiness
      By Lisa Yates, Editor
      Weekly Citizen
      Posted Jun 29, 2012 @ 02:57 PM

      Gonzales, La. —
      Members of Ascension Amateur Radio Club joined thousands of other amateur radio operators nationwide demonstrating their emergency capabilities last weekend. On Saturday and Sunday, folks met with amateur – also known as “ham” – radio operators to see technology that allows the operators to provide critical information and communications during emergency situations. Al Taillon of Gonzales, the club’s treasurer, said this is an annual event known as Field Day, which is sponsored by the American Radio Relay League – the national association for Amateur Radio. “The event is three-fold,” he said. “First of all, it’s a drill to set up our trailer and equipment. In the event of an emergency we may have to set up out in a remote location somewhere, so this is good practice. Second, it’s a public awareness event; and, third, it’s a contest to contact as many other ham stations as possible in a 24-hour period.” Todd Trosclair, the club’s vice president, said it took approximately two hours to set up the mobile station. “We run our equipment on a battery and a generator,” he said, noting that they can alternate power sources as needed. The outdoor equipment included a pneumatic telescoping mast with a camera, satellite antenna and emergency repeater, which is used for amplifying the signal; and, a crank-up tower located on a separate trailer. Inside equipment included: a command center, state police and other .. (more...)

      Emergency communication devices need to be checked regularly for condition. Batteries need to be replaced or recharged on occasion. Extra batteries stored must also be checked and replaced if needed. If you need to evacuate is the equipment in a portable bag ready to go with you? Learning the basics of Morse code and the language of radio is an essential set of skills for communication in preparedness. Ham radio operators require certification to have and use these advanced tools. Taking a class on using any of these communication skills should be on your emergency preparedness to do list!

      That radio or whistle may save a life or be a beacon of hope.

      Tuesday, July 3, 2012

      Emergency Power Outage - Is my food still good?

      Is this food still good? ~ Image: MorgueFiles
      In an emergency power outage questioning your refrigerated food items and wondering whether that food is still good may be an issue.

      Food storage in emergencies doesn't have to be problematic. Events where the power is not available for refrigeration need to be addressed with foods that require no power to be preserved.

      Freeze-dried and dehydrated foods are ideal in these times. Food stored in cans or sealed in glass bottles, too, keep better because they require little more than space in your pantry. Use up quickly any foods that may turn unhealthy is your first line of defense in protecting what you have on hand and your health. Food borne illnesses are an element of a crisis for some folks but that doesn't mean it has to be a part of your survival preparedness 

      Consider storing bottles of water in the freezer. Ready to go refrigeration is at your disposal and all it takes is a simple transfer from freezer to ice chest and your foods are protected.

      Knowing how to tell if your food is still safe and usable in emergencies only takes a few applied pieces of good information.

      Here are some guidelines and useful tips from the Health Department in West Virginia.

      From: The Charleston Gazette
      July 1, 2012 By Mackenzie Mays
      Health department advises safe food storage during storm recovery

      CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- As thousands of West Virginians remain without power following Friday's storm and rush to available stores to stock up on ice and other supplies, the Kanawha-Charleston Health Department is advising people to be careful when preparing and storing food.

      Any illness caused by incorrectly prepared food is even more dangerous during the state of emergency, as many are struggling to find resources amid record high temperatures, said Sean Carver, sanitarian for the Kanawha-Charleston Health Department. "Food safety during this time is especially important to people who may already have illnesses or low immune systems such as small children and senior citizens. Right now, people need to stay hydrated with clean water and make sure they're storing their food the right way," Carver said. "At a time like this, it's better to be safe than sorry."

      Friday's storm caused one of the biggest power outages in recent history, with 53 of West Virginia's 55 counties experiencing power loss. Kanawha, Putnam, Cabell, McDowell, Mercer, Summers and Wayne counties may not see full restoration until the weekend, according to Appalachian Power officials.

      The health department is working with the Kanawha County Emergency Operations Center to provide the public with storm recovery guidelines, such as what to do with perishable food and how to store emergency water supplies.

      Food in the freezer will only remain frozen up to 24 hours if the freezer door remains closed. If frozen foods have thawed and been stored at temperatures above 41 degrees for less than four hours, they are safe to eat if used immediately, Carver said.

      If the temperature of perishable foods rises above 41 degrees for more than four hours, it should be discarded. Usually, foods with ice crystals in their centers are safe to eat for at least three days, according to a news release.

      "Just because food gets cold again after it's gotten warm doesn't mean it's OK to eat," Carver said. "People have to be alert and careful." Other storm recovery guidelines provided by the Kanawha-Charleston Health Department include:

      • Cover the freezer with blankets to insulate food. Do not cover the air vent openings. This will help keep foods cold for a longer period of time.
      • Use dry ice to help keep frozen food safe for an extended period of time.
      • Only use fireplaces, charcoal grills, camp stoves and other alternate cooking sources outdoors to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning.(more...)

      Food borne illnesses can be prevented and loss of foods can be, too. Store it right the first time and prepare refrigerator items before hand for when a condition arises that may effect it's quality. Temperatures can be maintained with a few simple tips preserving food quality and keeping your family safe from food borne illnesses in times of emergency. 

      Preparedness Storage H2O - Water Main Break

      Something as simple as a water main break in your city's water supply makes preparedness storage of H2O a very practical idea. Having an adequate supply of h20 on hand in your home prevents having to search for it. In emergency situations it is one of the very first things to disappear on the store shelves and the price of it shoots through the roof if you need to seek out a supply when yours has been exhausted.

      When a city water supply is shut down the hazards of the city water quality turning sour is certain. Boil water until news reports announce it is safe to use tap water once more.

      We try to keep at least 2 cases of bottled water and a few one gallon jugs of H2O in our supply at all times. Plan for at least 3 days of it. In the long run you can spend time doing other things then searching for water..

      Water supplies in preparedness planning serves us even for minor problems.

      from the Ashbury Park Press.
      Water Main Break ~ Image: MorgueFiles
      Emergency water distribution expected to continue through Tuesday
      9:25 PM, Jul 1, 2012

      (Residents) were two of thousands of Monmouth County residents who rang in July by driving through one of three sites to pick up a case of emergency water Sunday morning after Friday’s water main break.

      MONDAY UPDATE: Water distribution down to one site. See updated information, here.

      New Jersey American Water is in its second day of supplying county residents with cases of water at Wolf Hill Park in Oceanport, as well as Middletown High Schools North and South. The distribution is expected to continue through at least Tuesday, said Jeremiah Hulsart, an operations supervisor with New Jersey American Water Co.

      The Baginskys, of Eatontown, visited the Oceanport site Sunday for the second time in as many days. Donna Baginsky said that the location is convenient, just a mile and a half from their home, which is helping them cope well with the crisis. However, they too are struggling in their everyday activities without a safe source of water at home.

      “The worst part, I guess, is that we have six cats who drink a lot of water, so that’s why I boil a lot of water,” Donna Baginsky said. “We’re (not going to be able to) water our garden.”

      Buzz Baldanza, coordinator for Oceanport’s Office of Emergency Management, said that his site was expecting five truckloads of water palates Sunday. Each truckload holds 19 pallets, with each pallet containing 84 cases of 24-packs of ShopRite water, said Marty Walters, also an operations supervisor with the water company. New Jersey American Water purchased the water from ShopRite, Walters said.

      A total of 10 truckloads were delivered to the three locations Saturday, with 15 truckloads expected Sunday. Nearly 5,000 cases were handed out Saturday along with several gallon jugs, Walters said.

      Charlie Rogers, coordinator for Middletown’s Office of Emergency Management, was overseeing the distribution at Middletown High School North, where a lengthy but quick-moving line of cars wrapped around the school’s buildings before splitting into two lanes for pickup.

      “It’s a steady line; basically, it moves rather quickly,” Rogers said. “It only takes less than a minute to throw the water in the car. You know, roll your window down, open your door, whatever we have to do; we get it in and keep going.”

      Rogers said that his site was distributing water from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday, just as it had Saturday. The site began with one truckload at 7 a.m., with four more expected.

      Despite the nuisance of not having water at home, Donna Baginsky noticed the number of volunteers who... (more...)

      Prepare ahead of the disaster and ready your home with an adequate supply of water for each individual family member. The amount of time spent in the water ration lines can be distressing and there is no guarantee water is going to be there when it is your turn. Wouldn't you rather be doing something else? I know I would. =)

      For More on Preparedness Storage of H2O 

      Children and Emergency Preparedness

      Addressing children and emergency preparedness issues is extremely important and it must to be done without causing them emotional harm. We need to take in to consideration the needs of our youngest citizens when it comes to readiness.

      Teach Children Emergency Preparedness ~ Image: Morguefiles
      In the fires, floods, storms, and general upheaval the youngest members in disaster are being shook up and tossed into uncertain circumstances. They find themselves in perilous or frightening conditions and unsure of what to do with their situation

      We can't always be there for them. This may be a tough fact to accept but it is an issue that has to be addressed. 

      Prepare children for an emergency where they may not have an adult around to help them. They may have to do for themselves or search out an adult to help them if something has happened to the family or home. Do this as gently as possible with some simple play training that teaches them about food, water, shelter, and finding or using first aid.

      From Survival Recovery:

      Children in Emergencies

      With the news  today there are signs that we may need to be ready for anything. This includes our children. We are sending them to school to ready them for the future with a good education.

      Scouting  and other readiness ideas need to be given them as well. There are many good ways to help a younger child understand what they need to do in emergency conditions.
      Preparing them properly may save their lives.

      Let’s start with evaluating the mind set of said child or children. If I have a four year old or a younger toddler, I am responsible completely for this child’s welfare and needs. Children ages 5 and over can be fed small bits of information to ready them in the event of an emergency situation occurring. Adolescents can be given the information straight if they are mature enough to understand what you are talking about and if they are strong willed in nature.
      When presenting these ideas to your family be selective of who you would share this information with.
      If little Susie is easily given to nightmares she is not a family member to discuss emergency plans with. While son, Billy, a teenager, is a rock and won’t be affected by serious conversations. Appoint older kids as captains to shepherd younger siblings and / or pets to the safe area you have designated for these events.
      Think about the equipment you have for emergencies. Does your youngest member of the family have the capability to understand how start up a generator or are they too young for this lesson? Can they use a two-way radio or a CB? Arm them with valuable information for the age group they are in. They need to be able to safely tend to their needs on their own in the worst case scenario.
      Gently show them different ideas for preparedness teaching and let them view it as a serious game. They need to understand how to feed, hydrate, and shelter without assistance. Target the basic human necessities. The more info you give them on a delicate level the safer they are going to be. We don’t want them dealing with hazards that are harmful to them but we do want them to know what dangers may lurk in the event you cannot be there for them. Seriously consider that there may be an event of this occurance..(more..)

      Children need to be ale to be independent in emergency conditions.

      Offer preparedness topics to the little ones in a language and manner that is appropriate to their age group. Taking the time to train these bright, young minds can help alleviate some confusion and enable them to think or act on their own in times of peril or trouble.

      It might just be the one readiness activity that serves your family best.

      Talk to children gently about emergency survival. They may just surprise you with ideas you never thought of!

      Kids often become heroes in disasters!

      Image: Morgefile