Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Build a Kit

What would you do if your house burned down? Was hit by a tornado? Suffered major damage from a hurricane (a la Hurricane Ike windstorm)? What would you do if you lost everything?

The last major disaster to hit the Louisville area was the August flood in 2009. That was over a year ago, but the Red Cross responds to more than “major” disasters.

Since September 1, the Louisville Area Chapter has responded to 14 home fires, 6 of which occurred at an apartment complex or boarding house where multiple families lived. Many of the residents affected lost all of their belongings; this includes clothing, food, photos and other precious items.

What if you only had a few moments to grab everything you needed? Wouldn’t it be easier if you already had your basic necessities packed and ready to go? This is exactly what the Red Cross recommends. Every family—scratch that—every individual, should have a disaster kit packed and ready in case of an emergency.

While the pack should mainly consist of basic survival items like clothing, non-perishable food and water, packing your kit ahead of time allows you to think of the not-so-obvious items like copies of important documents, medications, gloves or, my personal favorite, a can opener. A girl’s gotta eat, and so do you.

Don't forget to put together a kit to keep at work or in your car.

For a full list of items you should include in your disaster kit, go to