Friday, December 14, 2012

Give the gift of preparedness this year

Have someone on your holiday gift list who is hard to shop for? Why not give the gift of emergency preparedness? Here are some simple, inexpensive ways to show you care and help your loved ones be more prepared in the new year:

  1. Flashlight with extra batteries: When the power goes out, how many of us have gone rummaging in the dark looking for that flashlight? Or we find the flashlight, only to realize it doesn’t have fresh batteries? It might sound like a boring gift, but flashlights and batteries always come in handy. Consider a magnetic flashlight that will stick on the fridge, or a headband flashlight so that giftees can keep their hands free during an emergency.
  2. First-aid kit: First-aid kits are always great to have around, but can be especially useful during a disaster or storm, when emergency responders can be delayed. You can purchase pre-made kits at most stores, or take a look at our tips for creating a useful first-aid kit and make your own! Plus, if you decide to make your own kit, you can personalize it. For a new mom, for example, include baby-related items. 
  3. All-weather radio: Weather or emergency radios are battery- or hand crank-powered. They are specially designed to receive the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Weather Radio All Hazards broadcast, which is a 24/7 broadcast from the National Weather Service with official warnings, forecasts and emergency alerts. New versions include USB ports so you can charge your mobile phone when the power goes out!
  4. Car emergency kit: For your favorite someone who loves to get behind the wheel, you can help them be safe on the road by gifting items for a car emergency kit. Items like a first-aid kit, car battery charger or jumper cables, and a flashlight are all important things to have in a vehicle. If the person lives in an area at risk for cold temperatures or winter storms, consider adding an extra blanket, a set of warm clothes and an ice scraper. 
  5. Family emergency plan: Sometimes the best gifts are ones that money can’t buy. While you gather with family and close friends over the holiday season, set aside time to create an emergency plan with your family. Think about the possible disasters that could happen near your home and discuss what your family can do to stay safe. Make a list of important phone numbers, including someone who lives out of the area in case local phone lines are busy. Take a look at a map and pick both a local and out-of-town meeting place where you can safely meet your loved ones in the event of an emergency. Once you’ve got everything planned out, be sure to write it down and give everyone a copy. has a blank family preparedness plan that you can fill out, or create your own!

That’s our short list of preparedness gift ideas. Are you helping someone get ready this year with a holiday gift? What’s on your wish list? What was the best preparedness gift you have ever received?  Let us know in the comments!  Have a happy and safe holiday season.

No comments: