Prepare a power outage survival kit for your family so you'll have the necessary supplies when the lights go out in your neighborhood. (h/t to AskAPrepper.com)
Even though you can survive without a blackout survival kit, you need to be ready with supplies so you have what you need if you're dealing with a long-term power outage. (Related: LIGHTS OUT: 20 Things you need to do during a power outage.)
Every blackout survival kit should contain some key supplies that will make things easier for you during a power outage. These supplies should be in your kit along with food, water and other items.
When preparing your survival kit, you need things that will help you:
Keeping warm or cool
You need electricity to run your furnaces and air-conditioning, but a blackout survival kit won't be able to cool your home down.
If you're preparing a summer power outage survival kit, items like a battery or solar-powered fan can help your family stay cool. Make sure you also stock up on enough clean drinking water for the whole family so you can all stay hydrated.
When preparing a winter power outage survival kit, you will need blankets to warm yourself up. You should also include a spare change of warm clothing in your bag, along with hand warmers.
Carbon monoxide poisoning is a common risk during power outages, especially during winter. Never use a gas range to heat your home and only use portable stoves, charcoal grills and generators outside and at least 20 feet away from the windows.
Don't use a propane heater indoors unless it's specially designed for indoor use. Always check your carbon monoxide detectors to make sure they are working properly.
Keeping food cold
During a power outage, keep your refrigerator and freezers closed to prevent food from spoiling.
If you frequently experience long-term power outages in your area, invest in a generator or solar battery bank so you can run your refrigerator and freezer. If all else fails, you can use blankets or other insulating material to wrap fridges and freezers to help keep them cold.
If the power goes out at night, you will need flashlights.
Make sure you have a flashlight, headlamp and lantern in your power outage survival kits. It's best to have a headlamp and lantern for every family member in your power outage survival kit and extra batteries.
You also need several battery banks in your kit to provide at least a couple of charges per device for each family member.
A solar battery bank or solar generator is the best option because you can also use some models to run small appliances like a fridge or freezer.
When the power grid goes down, it will also take down portions of the communications infrastructure.
When SHTF, you will need a battery-operated radio so you can monitor updates from the local radio stations. Additionally, you will need a corded phone that you can plug into the wall and doesn't require any batteries or power.
Prepare ahead by getting a license for amateur radios if you want to use one when things go south.
Before a power outage, you should have access to alternative cooking methods that do not require electricity so you can cook meals or boil water if necessary.
Make sure your blackout survival kit has a camp stove, manual can opener and a lot of fuel.
Each family will be different and have unique needs for their blackout survival kits.
Here is a sample checklist of things you will need in case of a blackout:
For each family member:
For the main kit:
Note that a power outage survival kit is different from a grab-and-go kit that must be kept in a bag if you have to bug out or evacuate.
Keep the supplies for your power outage survival kit organized in a cabinet or closet. Another option is to spread the contents over several locations around the home to make things easier and more organized.
You can also give each family member an individual kit to keep in their bedroom with a flashlight, headlamp, lantern, spare batteries and some blankets. Doing this ensures that everyone will know exactly where to go to get their individual kits.
If a power outage occurs at night, everyone can reach their light source without having to wander too far in the dark.
Do not store any battery-operated device with the batteries inside. If you leave batteries inside of a device, there is a risk that the contacts will become corroded or the batteries could leak.
For easy access, tape a set of batteries to the side of each device. This ensures that you don't have to search for batteries in the dark.
You can also save time by keeping a flashlight that only needs one battery in each kit so it's easy to load the battery when the lights are off.
While a blackout is rarely a life-threatening survival scenario, it's best to prepare ahead of time so you don't get inconvenienced, especially if you are facing a blackout in winter or summer.
Visit Preparedness.news for more tips on how to prepare for a power outage.
Watch the video below for more tips on how to pack a power outage survival kit.
This video is from the Prepping101 channel on Brighteon.com.