Preparing for a Natural Disaster

What you need for an earthquake, smoke, or simply stormy weather.

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None of us like to dwell on the thought of some natural disaster turning our world upside down. However, we’d also hate to be caught unprepared in the event nature strikes. Fortunately, a little planning and prep can go a long way to making sure you’re ready. That way, you’re not one of thousands trying to find those essentials when everyone else is!

Earthquake Preparedness

We’ve all heard it – the Pacific Northwest is overdue for a massive earthquake. It’s smart to have an earthquake kit easily accessible in your home. Pack it, store it, and hopefully never have to use it! Here’s what we recommend to go in your earthquake kit:

  • Water – it’s recommended that you have a gallon of water per person per day. That’s a lot of water! Fortunately, we have gallon-size jugs of water available, or packs of bottled water if that’s your preference.
  • Food – Snacks, nutrition bars, canned food, and other non-perishable food. You may also want to think about packing some BBQ sauce or mustard to flavor otherwise bland food.
  • Battery-powered hand-crank radio – Bartell’s has it!
  • Flashlight & extra batteries
  • Medications
  • First Aid Kit – either make your own, or buy one of our pre-made first aid kits
  • Emergency blankets – yep, we have these too. Or, simply store some regular fleece or flannel blankets.
  • Important documentation – passports, birth certificates, bank account information, and any other information
  • Babies and young children – don’t forget to pack some baby food, diapers and wipes for your little one.

Other items to consider: Instant coffee or ibuprofen in case you’re prone to caffeine withdrawals, board games or a deck of cards, sturdy shoes, duct tape. For more information on preparing for an earthquake, visit the Center for Disease Control.

Smoke and Smog

The wildfires in Eastern Washington over the past couple of years have been devastating for our neighbors over the mountains. It’s also impacted residents in Western Washington by spreading thick smoke in and around the Puget Sound. Smoke can have strong negative impacts on our health, and these impacts are even worse for young children, seniors, and those who are sick. Here’s what you should have at the ready:

  • Water – it’s important to drink lots of water to reduce coughing and to help with a sore throat
  • Eye Drops – to help with dry itchy eyes
  • Indoor Games & Activities – the best thing you can do when air quality is poor is limit your exposure to the smoke and possible fumes. Stay indoors with the windows and doors closed! We recommend having some board games, Mad Libs, and other forms of entertainment at-the-ready in case you find yourself indoors for a long period of time

At a minimum, the PNW usually gets hit with a strong winter storm or two during the course of the fall and winter season. Visit our blog post for more information on how to prepare for the next storm.