Where do I Store my Disaster Supplies?

Gypsy looking in a crytal ball

If I had a dollar every time someone asked me, “Where do I store my Disaster Supplies,” I would be a wealthy woman.

Facing Lady thinking where to store Disaster Suppliesany disaster will be a scary experience as you and your family face many unknowns.  But with your Disaster Supplies safely stored away,  you won’t be desperately struggling to get the supplies you and your family need. So, where is the best place to store my Disaster Supplies?

First, a quick review on Disaster Supplies you, your family and pets will need:

  • Grab & Go Kits are for short-term disasters when you need to flee to safety. They contain essential items you and each family member (including your pets) will need for the next several hours.  Check out my recent article for more info on how to put together your Grab & Go Kits.
  • Home Disaster Kits are for the longer-term disaster if you can stay and survive in your home and don’t need to evacuate. With your family’s necessary supplies safely stored away, you will be able to Stay and Survive-It. For more info on Home Disaster Kits, check out my recent article.  If you prefer to purchase ready-made kits a great place is BC Quake.

    Where do you Store your Disaster Kits?

Gypsy looking in a crytal ball

Even a crystal ball can’t predict the impact of the next disaster!  But we do know with Disaster Supplies safely stored and ready to go – you will be prepared.   Remember – Life Safety always comes first, and if it is not safe to grab your Disaster Supplies, just get out of your home to safety.

Tip: With Disasters such as flooding and forest fires, you may have some warning.  If so, gather your Disaster Supplies and store them in your vehicle.  When the order comes to evacuate, you will be ready to go!

Apartment Dwellers

If you live in an apartment, you may only have one door to leave from, making it an easy decision on where to store your Grab & Go Kit.  My advice – To make it easy to flee to safety, keep your Grab & Go kits in the closet by your front door,

Apartment BuildingDepending on your apartment’s size and the number of people living in the apartment, finding enough space to store your Home Disaster Kit can be challenging.

I live in an apartment and have my Home Kit supplies safely stored in a blue Rubbermaid bin in my Hall Closet along with my Grab & Go, Kit.   Some people will use a bedroom closet or other location in their apartment convenient to store their disaster supplies. The key is to make it easy to access your disaster supplies.

My last apartment was tiny, and there was no room to store my disaster supplies in a Rubbermaid bin anywhere.  Eventually, the idea occurred to me.  I could use the bottom shelf of my kitchen cupboard to store my disaster supplies.  Sometimes we must be creative to ensure we have the Disaster Supplies we need safely stored away!

Many people ask, “Is storing Disaster Supplies in your apartment’s basement storage locker a good idea?”. I am not saying it won’t work, but consider:

  • How will you access your Disaster Supplies if you live on a high floor and the elevator is not working? Carrying your Disaster Supplies up several flights of stairs may be difficult.
  • If you must quickly evacuate to safety, would you even be able to access your Disaster Supplies stored in your locker?

House Dwellers

Living in a house, you have more than one way to evacuate, should the need arise. Your front door, back door, patio door, and maybe, even more, depending on your home, could all be possible options when evacuating.

Start by identifying which door you would likely leave from if fleeing to safety in the middle of the night.  Once identified, that is where you should store your Disaster Supplies.   Most people keep their Grab & Go Kits in the closet by the front door.Disaster Supplies in a Garage

Home Disaster Kits typically are stored in your garage or basement.  If storing in your garage, keep in mind that your garage door may not open if the power is out.  This could limit how quickly you could get out of your garage with your disaster supplies unless you have a “Man-Door.”

Garden sheds are another location where people often store their Disaster Supplies. Sheds can work well but make sure you have Disaster Supplies stored in a suitable container to keep them protected. At one of my workshops, a person shared they had their Disaster Supplies stored in a shed, and the rodents got into the kits, destroying their disaster supplies.

Easy Access to your Disaster Supplies

Storing your Grab & Go Kits and Home Disaster  Kits makes them easily accessible.  Unfortunately, the biggest challenge we see is that they get pushed out of the way eventually getting buried under the sports equipment and holiday decorations. When facing a disaster, you need easy access to your stored Disaster Supplies.

(don’t forget every 6-months, you need to access to update supplies).

Also, ensure your Disaster Supplies are safely stored away from the chemicals and weed killers we often keep in our garages on shelves. If the chemicals spill onto your Disaster Kits and leak into your Disaster Supplies, it could destroy your disaster supplies.

Final Thought on Storing your Disaster Supplies

Hands holding a familyOne objection I often hear when I share my thoughts on Disaster Preparedness and Storing your Disaster Supplies is:

What if the disaster happens and I can’t access my Disaster Supplies – what then? An excellent question, but one we need to think about a little deeper.  Often this can be an excuse for not getting prepared.  We don’t know how it will impact us until we face the disaster. I believe it would be worse if you could access your supplies, but you didn’t have disaster supplies safely stored away.

We all need to take responsibility for our family’s and pet’s preparedness.  Look at your home and determine the best place to store your family’s disaster supplies to ensure easy access to them when you need it most.

Have questions – don’t hesitate to ask.

Until next time – stay safe and make sure you, your family and pets are prepared to better “Survive-It.”

As Always, BE PREPARED – NOT SCARED!

 

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