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September 11, 2007

Disaster Preparedness: Keep Medication and Perishables Up to Date

Posted in: Emergency Preparedness

Stinky_OdorYou wouldn't drink milk past its expiration date, would you? Then why take any chances during your next disaster or home emergency.

There are any number of reasons you might dip into your disaster supply kit, such as an ice storm, power outage, water disruption, or neighborhood evacuation. The last thing you want is perishables making your preparations worthless.

Make sure food and medicines are not outdated
First, you need to recognize the items that will need continual refreshing. For instance, bottled water only has a shelf-life of six months. (Each person will need one gallon per day, and you ought to stock for three days.) If you don't want that water going to waste, cycle it out every three months. Add new bottles to the kit, and use the rest.

Canned foods have a longer shelf life. Baby food, however, will not last as long. Make it a habit to look at those expiration dates while you're swapping out your water.

Some medications respond better than others to long-term storage, but others must be tossed after a period of time. Set up schedulers to keep help you keep medications fresh.

Have reminders sent to you in email
There's no excuse for not being prepared anymore. Not with free online applications to help trigger those reminders. Sign up for a free account at:

   • Remember the Milk
   • Backpackit
   • Google Calendar
   • 30 Boxes.)

They can all be configured to send you reminder e-mails at a set point in the future. (I use two of them to remind me to take out the trash every week. I'm a sucker for contingency plans.)


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