With all the recent flurries of people scrambling due to the recent news. It is a great time to brush up on how to prepare for Coronavirus (COVID-19). Preparing for a viral outbreak or pandemic is very similar to preparing for most natural disasters.
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#1 – Don’t Panic
Resist the urge to act rashly – doing so often just results in poor judgement. Taking the time to collect your thoughts, and then reacting in as rational a way as you can is actually a skill in itself. A skill that we should all strive to perfect!
Now there are times, where quick decisive action is necessary — and the ability to think on your feet is yet another valuable skill. But prepping / preparing is not a split-second type decision. Sidenote: by preparing you CAN help for those situations as well – and formulating well thought out plans for various “What if -” scenarios is a great exercise to hone the skill of quick thinking.
When you are continually prepping for any natural disaster, including the Coronavirus outbreak, you will be practicing your skills of remaining calm.
Panic is merely the fear that we are not prepared for something.
Should you Prep for the Coronavirus?
Over reaction is often just is bad as no reaction. It is important to try and keep perspective – for example whether this disease really has a higher mortality rate than the common flu (influenza) – something there still seems to be a lot of conflicting information on.
One thing that I think most would agree on – it is better to be prepared for something than not to be. And a good plan will be tailored to a variety of disasters – so your efforts may not be in vain even if this all turns out to be overblown.
I always advocate trying to prep in a way that is beneficial to your everyday life – even if you are fortunate enough to never experience a major life disrupting disaster.
What do you need to be prepared for Coronavirus?
The most important things we need, are the same things we need in our daily lives. Sanitary Water, Food, Shelter. We will go over each of these in more detail below.
After those needs are all met, it then becomes a personal question that should be tailored to you and the ones you are hoping to protect. Questions such as — Does anyone in your family have special medical needs? If so — what can you do to help provide for them in the event you may not be able to fill prescriptions?
If you are completely new to prepping check out prepping 101 – while not tailored specifically to Coronavirus, most of the advice is still relevant.
Prepping for a Supply of Sanitary Water to Prepare for Coronavirus
Water storage is a great thing to have – and can start with just keeping some gallon jugs of water on hand. If you can – use containers that you would normally use in everyday life, that way you can rotate through them keeping the water fresh. The more water you can store – the longer you can go should your water supply be disrupted. If that were to happen, you should also have a plan to conserve water as much as possible. Rationing – using alternatives water sources for non sanitary needs, etc.
The best plans will include ways to procure a continual supply of your own sanitary water. If you live where you have a well or fresh water spring, you have a major advantage! So long as you have thought of ways you can get the water even if you should lose power.
Prepping Food Supplies to Prepare for Coronavirus
Think about the foods your family typically eats. Which of those foods are the most shelf stable. If you eat a lot of bread, consider stockpiling the ingredients to make bread (flour, yeast, etc.) instead of buying lots of bread that is likely to mold before you get a chance to use it.
Emergency food rations are also great to stockpile, but keep in mind they may or may not get used should you be lucky and never need them. That’s why I think the best plan starts with storing a supply of the stuff you will use either way. Then expand from there.
Should you be forced to stay home due to a quarantine or other reason, how long can you feed your family with the food you have on hand? How many of the foods can be prepared without the need of electricity and or natural gas? These are the questions to ask yourself here!
Shelter Considerations to Prepare for Coronavirus
Shelter is a very broad category and has a lot of aspects to consider. It is not simply just a roof over your head, but literally protection from all elements that could do you your family harm. This could be protection from extreme weather, but in extreme worse case scenarios also mean protection from riots, looters, etc. While I really don’t think the current Coronavirus Pandemic will lead to such tragic events, it is not necessarily a bad thing to consider the possibility – and then do our best to be prepared just in case.
Shelter also includes being prepared for extended power outages. Fortunately, the weather is rather mild in most parts of the country right now. However, many aspects of our daily lives revolve around having power. From food storage, to food preparation, medical needs for those on a CPAP machine, and more. Consider having a backup power supply. Gas generators are relatively inexpensive, although they are noisy and will consume lots of fuel. Many are now also preparing with solar generators. These have the advantage that they do not need a continual supply of gasoline and are virtually silent. They are more expensive however, and they are more limited in how many devices they can power at a time. Due to their higher cost, I have also made a video series on how to build your own solar generator.
The final category for shelter includes protection from outside harm. While we all hope that the Coronavirus pandemic will be short-lived and in hindsight will just be a minor footnote on our history, no good preparedness plan would be complete without considering protection from others. Should there be massive quarantines coupled with limited supplies to go around, there may be others that were less prepared trying to take from those that are.
In a perfect world, everyone would have everything they need. Sadly, that is not the world we live. One only needs to look back to the events of 2005 – Hurricane Katrina – to see how ugly even our own modern society can get in a disaster. It is still not known how many of the casualties were directly related to the storm vs the rioting / looting that took place after. This storm only affected a portion of the country, and even so Homeland Security has described Hurricane Katrina as “probably the worst catastrophe or set of catastrophes” in the country’s history, referring to the hurricane itself plus the flooding of New Orleans.
Having a means of self defense can be vital in times of emergency. This could be simply shoring up your home security and keeping pepper spray on hand. Others may prefer to have firearms on hand for the worst-case scenarios – that’s a personal choice that everyone needs to make for their own family’s situation and needs, but self-defense is an aspect every complete emergency plan should consider.
How to prepare for Coronavirus
In summary, preparing for Corona-virus is much like preparing for any other natural disaster or emergency. We always hope that our plans will not be necessary, but once they become necessary, it can often be too late!
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