Emergency Preparedness- Updating 72 hour kits

Hey all! I know we just talked recently about assembling our 72 hour kits, and so if you were just starting your kits at that time, you probably aren’t needing to go through and update yet. However, for me, I try to do my updating at General Conference time (it makes it easier for me to remember when I need to update), and seeing as we just had Conference… it was time for me to update. Okay. The point of all this rambling is that as I was updating my kits this past week, I thought of a couple things… some tips or things to consider… that I wanted to share with you.

Most of these tips are related to keeping a kit in your car (which I do), but some are just all around suggestions. So here we go:

  • Personal Documents: Under the ‘personal documents’ section of the 72 Hour Kit Checklist, there are certain items you do NOT want to keep in your car kit, such as the car title, account numbers, or other sensitive personal information. The reason for this is that if your car (or the kit) were to be stolen, that important information would be in the hands of a thief. So choose wisely which ones you put in here and only keep copies of documents in there that cannot be used against you if put in the hands of the wrong person. (And never keep the originals in your kits.) I also like to write “copy” on my copied documents so that no one would mistake it as an original.
  • Food: If you live in a place where it gets really hot, certain foods will not keep well in your car kit (since the car can be like an oven in the heat!). All of my dried apricots turned black (I didn’t even bother opening that up to smell them… it was just disgusting), the dried apples didn’t look much better (so we’ll keep dried fruits limited to our ‘home’ kit which is kept in the house), the beef jerky sticks were hard as rocks (we’re trying beef jerky strips this time), and the canned juice now gives me a stomach ache (I’m trying capri-suns this time around). Hubby has banned me from putting graham crackers in his kit now since his end up in tiny crumbs each time. (This, however, is because he smashes his kit all over the place under his car seats.) My graham crackers survived just fine and are making a reappearance this time around. Granola bars also faired well. Werther’s candies are one of the few candies that have survived the heat without much problem (anything chocolate is obviously a no-go, and even some hard candies like Jolly Ranchers melted a bit and got ultra sticky. Gummy bears are just fun. If you want an experiment in what melted candy looks like, stick gummy bears in your car kit. 🙂 They are surprisingly still edible, albeit melted together into one large mass. :)). Our canned goods all held up just fine and were non-toxic when we ate them. 🙂 Our freeze-dried meals were also perfectly fine. And I think that about does it for the food.
  • Personal Supplies & Medicines: Again related to if you live in a place where it gets really hot, deodorant will kind of start to dissolve (which makes a mess) in the heat, so I just keep that in our ‘home’ kit now. And if you keep a first aid kit in your car, don’t worry about putting medicines in your 72-hour car kits. There’s no point in doubling up (especially since those are ‘in case of emergency’ anyway). Just stick any medicines you would traditionally keep in your 72-hour kit into your first aid kit instead.
  • General Tips: Make Ziploc baggies your friend. Anything that has the potential to leak, spill, or ooze… stick it in a baggie. If you want to keep certain things grouped together, stick them in a baggie. Anything you want to keep protected (i.e. your documents), stick them in a baggie. Remember: Baggies are our friends. 🙂

Well, I think that was about all of it. The only other frustration I had was that as I was trying to gather all of the documents I needed to make copies of (insurance policies that have changed, personal documents that were out of date, etc), I was getting really tired of trying to hunt down all that information. Then I came across this idea for a Vital Records Binder and loved it. So guess what we’re going to start building?! 🙂 Every now and then (maybe once a month or so) starting tomorrow, I’ll do a Feature Friday that will start building our very own Important Papers Binder (you can call it Vital Records if you want… but that just reminded me too much of a hospital). 🙂 So I’ll see you tomorrow for a fun new project! Yeehaw!


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