Hello my friend and welcome back! Most of you have heard me speak about how important it is to have a good solid plan for handling any type of Disaster, both Natural and Manmade. It was recently pointed out to me that while I have made a few suggestions on such a notebook, I have never actually shared just how to make one and what you should have in it. This is the subject of today’s post, so grab a cup of coffee my friend and have a seat while we visit.
So what exactly is a Disaster Preparedness Notebook? Basically it is a 3 ring binder which has been sectioned off by Disaster Type and contains instructions to yourself on what to do in the event that type of disaster should occur. When a Disaster strikes, no matter what it is, your head will be filled with a thousand different thoughts. This can make gathering your thoughts and selecting your priorities difficult to say the least. With this book, you will only need to look at that section to see exactly what you need to do and when. Bare in mind, the instructions in the book are things which you have carefully thought out and prepared for.
Without this type of notebook available to you, then you could make deadly mistakes and overlook critical items and actions that could save your life. Every prepper should have one of these available to them at all times, even if it is only in electronic format. It’s important though that both the paper copy and the electronic both contain exactly the same thing. When you update one of them then update the other as well.
So how do I get started making a Disaster Preparedness Notebook (DPN)? The first thing you will want to do is to get a two to three inch three ring binder and add several tab pages to it. One for each type of disaster that you can think of. It is important that you do not over generalize the different types of disasters such as making a tab called “No Electricity”. Instead, you should label your tabs with things like “EMP”, “Cyber Attack”, “Nuclear Attack” and so on. Be sure to include Natural Disasters such as Earthquake, and Hurricanes as well as man-made.
In the very front of the notebook, you should have a complete list of contact information such as your child or parent’s phone number, email address and physical address as well. Be sure to add the local emergency contact information as well. Don’t rely on this information to be in your phone of memory because it may not be available when you need it the most.
I also recommend that in the back of the book, you keep a list of your entire inventory and where each item is located. Trying to remember if you have something and where it is in an emergency could cost you valuable time and agony when you can’t afford it the most. This inventory should be in a spreadsheet format to make it easier to locate and update each item as it is used.
Now to start on filling in the information for each Disaster by sitting down and slowly thinking out what you should do and in what order you should do it for each disaster. Be realistic and don’t overlook the little things. One of the biggest mistakes people make when creating these is to think that they don’t have to write down some small detail because they will naturally remember it. In a disaster, you may not be able to remember your own name let alone things like the first aid kit is under the bed in your room or on top of the fridge.
Write it down and trust nothing to memory! Once you have done this, go on to the next section. Once you have filled in all of the different disaster scenarios, go back to the beginning and review what you have there and look for ways to improve your chances by making small changes as needed. Remember, this is a living, breathing notebook and needs to be updated at every possible opportunity. Don’t just write it down and forget about it. If you do, then when a disaster happens, you may find that it contains outdated information which is of no use to you.
Lastly, store the book in a place where you will see it every day, and not in the top of some closet. In most disasters, time can make the difference between life and death, and the last thing you want to do is waste it looking for your notebook. Add as much information to each section as you can. When the time comes and you need to use the book, you’ll be glad that you took the time to write down safe, well thought out steps to follow.
Every Prepper should have one of these Notebooks in their home at all times. Yes it will take a little time to create it, but in the end it will be well worth all of the effort!
Well, my friend, that’s it for today’s post and I hope you’ve found it worthwhile. Until next time, stay safe, stay strong and stay prepared. God Bless America!