Recent events have caused many people to raid grocery stores in search of non-perishable food items (as well as a few dozen rolls of toilet paper). However, if you’re ready to hunker down either now or in the future, you’re going to need more than rice, beans, and canned peaches. Let’s take a look at some non-food related items that you should have on hand in case of an emergency.
Okay, so toilet paper is something worth investing in for your emergency preparedness supplies, but let’s not get crazy here. Instead of panic-buying everything, just grab an extra package here and there to add to your reserves. If you happen to find yourself without the sacred TP, try one of these alternatives!
It’s not just toilet paper you’ll need, however. In case of a real emergency, you may be without running water or access to a bathroom. It’s not pleasant to think about, but it’s even worse to be in a situation where you aren’t prepared for poo! Grab two buckets and some trash bags for this two-bucket toilet system.
Aside from bathroom supplies, you’ll also want to grab baby wipes – yes, even if you don’t have a baby. These wipes can be used instead of toilet paper. You can also use them to clean yourself up if you find that you’re without running water.
Other things you might not think to get: feminine hygiene products, toothbrushes, toothpaste, hand sanitizer, and any other items you would normally use throughout the week.
First Aid Items
While a $10 first aid kit from the store is a good start, there are a few other things you’ll want to add to it in order to have sufficient supplies during an emergency.
First up: medications. If you take prescription pills, consider talking to your doctor about getting an extra bottle to have on hand. Make sure to rotate the bottles so your medication doesn’t expire. Other medicine to have on hand include:
- Pain killers
- Anti-diarrhea medicines
- Fever reducers
- Cough/cold medicines
- Gauze pads
- medical tape</li>
- Anti-itch creams
- Anti-fungal creams
- Antibiotic ointment
- Antiseptic wipes
- Burn salve
Odds & Ends:
- Medical scissors
- Cotton balls and Q-tips
- Isopropyl alcohol
- LOTS of plastic gloves
You already know the first two items – duct tape and WD-40. Really, is there anything these two can’t fix?
Next on the list is rope. Now, there are a bunch of different kinds of rope out there, so make sure you know what to look for when buying rope for survival purposes. Tensile strength refers to the amount of force the rope can stand before it breaks. Elongation refers to how much stretch there is to the rope – essentially, this gauges how much shock the rope will absorb. You’ll also want to consider the number of strands. Since ropes are created by twisting strands of material together, it stands to reason that the more strands, the stronger the rope. For a more in-depth analysis and recommendations on kinds of rope, check out this article!
Make sure to have some tools on hand as well. You never know if you’re going to need to fix something or fashion something during an emergency. Gather all of the basics – hammer, screwdriver, nails, screws, wrench, etc. Also, make sure to have a box cutter as well as a multi-purpose tool and a knife.
Light & Heating:
Along with the obvious candles and flashlights, you’ll need supplies to keep these items working; aka batteries and matches or lighters. Kerosene heaters will help keep you warm in case the power gets cut. Here are reviews of some of the most popular kinds of kerosene heaters. For cooking purposes, keep a camping stove on hand.
Make sure to have a few tarps on hand! Aside from making great shelters, tarps can be used to cover up windows and collect rain water, as well as numerous other things.
Speaking of water – having a case of bottled water on hand is super important. However, you might not have enough to last however long you need it for. In which case, having a water bottle with a filter inside will ensure that you will have clean water to drink.
Pepper spray is a great non-lethal defense weapon that anyone can use without fear of hurting themselves or doing lasting damage.
Consider grabbing a deck of cards, some books, a journal, and pens and pencils. After all, if you’re going to be hunkered in place for a while, you’ll want some entertainment while you do it!