It could be anything from a terrorist attack to a natural disaster or a local power blackout. Whatever the emergency it pays to be prepared, in fact one day it may well save your life and the lives of your family. However with thousands of gadgets and emergency products it’s hard to know what to prioritise, the key is to cater to the most essential living requirements and build from there. Below is a list of the top items that cater to every basic need in any emergency:
1. Food & Water For 3 Days – The average recovery time in the western world is around three days so it makes sense to be self-sufficient for at least that long. Aim for around 1 litre per person per day, a mix of protein (from canned meat, fish and/or beans) and low GI carbohydrates such as dried fruit and nuts. These goods all come with an average expiry date of around 3 years so put a reminder in your calendar to check and refresh stocks by then.
2. Portable Radio – When TV and Phone lines are down a portable radio can be your only connection to the outside world. Giving you access to crucial public safety announcements and survival information.
3. One Torch Per Person – don’t forget to load up on plenty of spare batteries since electric lighting may not be available for days or even weeks in large scale attacks.
4. Wind and water proof clothing – unfortunately in some scenarios it may be safest to evacuate your house and in this instance you may be required to walk long and treacherous distances in the absence of functional transport.
5. Sun hats, glasses and UVA suncream – for the same reasons as before (and depending on your geographical region) these items can mitigate the serious danger of sunstroke.
6. First Aid Kit – these can be bought from most chemists or travel shops and make essential accompaniments to any survival kit.
7. Blankets and sleeping bags – it may be necessary to vacate to group rescue areas such as local sports centres or schools, in this instance it’ll be best if you have your own warm sleeping materials to ensure that you’re as comfortable as possible.
8. Toilet paper and moist tissues – useful for sanitation and general cleaning, first aid etc.
9. Local Maps & Compass – in instances where the national advice is to travel to a certain area most of us would turn to Google Maps or our GPS devices however these devices are may well be affected by the cause of the disaster so its safest to have a printed copy and compass for a full-proof back up.
10. Emergency Mobile Phone – buy a cheap mobile phone with credit on it and invest in a clockwork or solar powered charger for back up communication.
Whatever the emergency, these items will help protect you and your family from additional adversity. Some people may criticise this preparation as paranoid, but as long as you’re not breaking the bank then let them laugh because a little preparation will make the difference between comfort and distress, or potentially between life and death.
Fraser Strand is a freelance writer specialising in technology, gadgets, and adventure sports. He often writes for tech publishers like Budget Batteries or on his personal blog UK Gadget Review. He spends most of his free time buying gadgets, sailing, camping, and falling out of planes.