This is my first of what I hope is many contributions to the forum in appreciation for everyone's advice, information and suggestions through their posts.
Recent world events (especially the Japanese Earthquake) prompted our family to re-examine our 15 year old 72-hour kit and really sit down and put together a working Bug Out/In Plan.
The biggest challenge was winning the hearts and minds of my wife and daughter especially my teenage daughter who is a little skittish on the whole topic of emergency preparedness. So the question was raised, “How do I introduce the idea of prepping to her without filling her full of anxiety about the coming onslaught of brain eating zombies? Baby steps... baby steps.
Our daughter attends school just 2 miles from our home – about an hour leisurely walk. So what I thought I would do was to put together something that would serve as her EDC for everyday emergencies but would be innocuous so it wouldn’t be a glaring reminder that the next Big One is a foregone eventuality.
That’s when I came up with my twist on the BOAT (Bug Out Altoids Tin) or survival tin. For lack of a better term, I called it the GHAT or “Get Home Altoids Tin”. In the event of an emergency whether it be a minor cut, an allergy attack, lost wallet or an earthquake, the primary focus of her GHAT was to:
- take care of her immediate needs,
- get her home or a safe place,
- provide some type of assurance that everything is going to be okay and
- ease her into emergency preparedness.
The Contents *
(1) Set of house keys
(1) Streamlight Nano Flashlight
(1) Transit Card with $10 fare (taped to lid)
(1) Emergency Whistle
(1) Backup Battery (charged) for her Blackberry
(1) DIY cut down ballpoint pen
(1) ziplock "dump bag"
(1) OTC Med Pack*
- (2) Advil
- (2) Tylenol
- (3) Benadryl
- (3) Sudafed
- (2) Gas-X
- (2) Pepto Bismol Chewable
- (3) Imodium
(3) Sheets of Paper
(1) Customized 10 page Mini Instructions**
- “Stop, Think, Observe, Plan”
- “Keep Calm” (reassurance)
- “Family’s Get Home Plan” (bullet points of our detailed plan)
- “How to Use Cell Phones in Emergencies”
- “Stay or Go” (preplanned alternate safety locations)
- “On the Way Home” (how not to be a victim)
- “Once You Get Home” (going through the family's post emergency checklist)
- “Securing the House”
- “Important Phone Numbers”
- “Med Pack Descriptions/Dosage”
9.1.11 Added self adhesive magnetic tape to the bottom of the GHAT so that it could be stealthily mounted anywhere in my daughter's locker until its' needed.
10.20.11 Added a Streamlight Nano flashlight, chewable Pepto Bismol and a ziplock "dump bag" in the event she needs to get into the GHAT, she can dump what she doesn't need into the bag.
* OTC Meds remain in their individual sealed states which are compliant to our school district's rules.
** I did some research on the aftermaths of earthquakes and another natural disasters and took just bullet points and put them together in this insert.