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Planning For Winter In The Summer

Planning For Winter In The Summer

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Winter Survival…the MOST important preparation may not be what you think!

 

Yep, it’s hot outside…117 today where I live in Southern Utah, in fact. So, why start preparing for colder weather that’s still months away? Because winter survival is extremely difficult, and the most important preparation of all has nothing to do with stocking caps, wool socks or Pepperoni Hot Pockets (…mmmm…Hot Pockets…).

 

Each year nearly 1000 Americans die from cold-weather exposure and related injuries. Generally these deaths occur while traveling or participating in outdoor activities, and rarely at home or in permanent shelters. Moreover, the number occurring during a long-term survival scenario (widespread natural disaster, war, financial collapse, EMP…zombie apocalypse…) is virtually zero. So, the normal prepper approach isn’t going to position us for optimal success in most likely winter survival situations.

 

Have you ever tried to walk though knee-deep snow while taking the garbage can to the curb? The physical effort required for mobility or recovery in a snow-survival scenario can be three times that of a normal “emergency”. The obvious dangers are hypothermia and frostbite, shelter and clothing issues for sure, but are greatly exasperated by dehydration and the loss of insulation due to excessive sweat. Compound that with the increased exertion levels, causing exhaustion and even heart attack, and your cold-weather survival prospects are drastically reduced.

 

So, with that being said, the first secret to winter survival is…drum roll please…

 

Water!

 

Okay, maybe not that big of a surprise, but something that has to be specifically planned for during winter because we don’t normally think of it as lacking or necessary when it’s cold outside. Eating a large amount of snow to produce a relatively small amount of water is generally a bad idea, body temperature quickly becoming a factor, and keeping water thawed can also be a real trick. Preparation should include a supply of drinkable water, as much as a third more than you might normally carry, and a reliable way to melt ice and snow. In a pinch a frozen bottle can be placed in a warm bodily nook or crevasse, but again this is generally a poor idea as it contributes to lowering core temperature. A better solution is a Jet-Boil or pocket rocket type stove. Have one in your car or in your pack at all-times during the winter months…don’t forget the fuel…perfect for melting water and frozen Twinkies.

 

The real secret to winter survival is what the military calls “situational awareness”…that’s ”knowing your surroundings” to you and me. Understanding your location, temperature, snow depth, snow slope, and proximity to shelter and aid can ultimately be more important than the type of coat, knife or freeze-dried food in your pack. This takes real preparation. You’ll need to consult maps, locals, weather and snow reports, and the mother-of-all survival guides (Google, of course!) before you head out. If you’re traveling by car in the winter you need to know the road conditions and have a significant survival kit in the trunk. This sounds obvious, but you’d be surprised how few winter travelers have made any appropriate preparedness effort. Planning your winter trips and activities ahead of time will almost always save you money, and can literally save your life or that of your family.

 

June is a great time to get set for the winter months ahead, and at SurvivalKit.com we have the perfect preparedness kits for your car. Order one for each auto today…just remember to

add water.

 

 

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So Your Power Is Out, Now What Do You Do?

So Your Power Is Out, Now What Do You Do?

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The Power is now out. For how long? No one really knows yet. Maybe a few hours, a day, a week or God help us even longer. Knowing what to do and having a plan as well as the correct products and tools will help you streamline this experience. A few summers ago in Southern California we lost power for almost four days. Luckily we had proactively prepared and when the power died, we were ready. We didn’t need to leave our home and travel to an expensive hotel and pay a fortune for food. We actually embraced the challenge and put our plan to work. Below are some of the things we implemented and used for that 4 day period of time. When the power came back on we didn’t get cocky but we felt we had really accomplished a lot and realized our plan worked as well as we could have hoped. Get prepared today and don’t procrastinate because you never know what tomorrow has in store.

 

 

1.  Have flashlights ready in numerous and, easily accessible locations around your home.  Be sure to also have plenty of fresh, spare batteries.  You need one really great flashlight but it is also nice to have a bunch of small, handheld LED handheld flashlights.  Also, you can watch the video and read more about this on the bottom of the page but having a few of the Survival Lightbulbs around strategic areas of your home can make all the difference. When the power goes out you just flip the switch and these lights still come on! See the bottom for more details.

 

 

2.  Have emergency candles plus matches available as well a candle lantern, oil lamp, or propane lantern.  Be sure to include some longer, fireplace type matches or a butane wand for lighting fires in your fireplace or outdoors in a fire pit.

 

 

3.  Have either a battery-operated radio, solar radio or hand crank radio so that you can stay in touch with the world.  Make sure your radio is in working condition by testing it at least once a year.

 

 

4. Practice makes perfect, learn how to cook over an open fire, using charcoal or wood. Make sure you have matches, a lighter, or a fire striker to get a fire started.

 

 

5  Make sure you have a manual can opener for opening cans of food.  If you are a coffee drinker, also have a French press available as well as pre-ground coffee,

 

 

6.  Fill the empty space in your freezer with containers of water. Frozen water will displace air and keep food cold longer if the power goes out. Remember to leave space in containers for ice to expand. Empty milk cartons can be re-purposed in this manner.

 

 

7.  If you use a landlines, have at least one phone with a handset cord in your home. Many cordless phones will not work in a power outage.  Cell phone users should keep their cell phones charged and at the very least, pick up a cell phone car charger so you can charge the cell in your car if it runs down. There are also multiple small portable solar solutions now available to help keep personal electronics charged.

 

 

8.  If you have an automatic garage door opener, learn how to use the manual release to open your garage door manually.  Keep the instructions handy – perhaps taped to the inside of a closet door – so you don’t have to search for them when the time comes.

 

 

9.Always keep your automobile’s fuel tank at least half full. Most gas stations will not be in operation during a power outage. And make are to fill up your tank if a major storm is predicted.

 

 

10.  Once the power goes out, unplug sensitive electrical equipment such as computers, printers, televisions, and audio equipment.  When the power comes back on, there may be power surges that can damage delicate electronics.    Keeping these items plugged in to surge protector helps but it is still best to unplug these items from the wall completely.

 

 

11.  Do not open refrigerators or freezers any more than necessary. An unopened refrigerator will keep food cold for approximately 4 hours, an unopened freezer will keep food frozen for approximately 24 hours and even longer if it is located in a cold garage.  You should throw away any food items that become warmer than 41 degrees for an extended period of time. You don’t want to take any risk of getting food poisoning.

 

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12.  Keep a supply of books, board games, playing cards and other items available to keep you entertained and amused during a power outage.  A bit of chocolate and a bottle or two of wine or whiskey would also help in the amusement area. Playing games and keeping spirits high is important. You have heard us say it before but Attitude is everything, and you and those you love need to stay as positive and upbeat as possible.

 

 

13.  Be wary of the possibility of carbon monoxide poisoning, which is caused from exposure to odorless fumes created by charcoal grills, camping stoves or generators that are operated inside a home or garage. Don’t burn charcoal or use gasoline or propane-powered equipment inside your home. Don’t even do it in your garage or on your porch. Use such equipment only when you’re completely outdoors.

 

 

14. Notify your power company in advance if you use special healthcare equipment like oxygen generators or dialysis equipment that require power. Most power companies have the ability to note this in their records and will prioritize the response to your home.

 

 

15.  If your budget allows, acquire a portable generator.   Learn to safely use your generator and test it on a regular basis.  Make sure to store enough fuel to run the generator for up to a week.  Remember, your portable generator does not have to run full time.  Your refrigerator will be just fine without power over night when it is not being opened and closed repeatedly.

 

 

Most of us have been through situations with no power for periods of time. Being proactively prepared before something bad happens makes all the difference in emergency situations. Take this time now, when things are normal to plan ahead and prepare. Power outages that last more than 72 hours can become deadly. Those that are prepared and have the supplies and a plan in place not only survive but thrive compared to others in the same situation.

 

 

The Survival Lightbulb you see on sale below was built for power outages. Their motto is, “When the Power Goes Out, This Light Stays On.” Being able to have normal light that isn’t mono focused like a flashlight let’s you operate in a normal lighting situation. The Survival Lightbulb lights up the room the same as if your power was still on. Click on the banner below to watch a 30 second video explaining how this Lightbulb could literally light up your life when you need it the most.

 

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