Fire Chief and Emergency Management Director Charles Doody offered residents tips for responsibly stocking their emergency preparedness stockpile during September which has been proclaimed by Gov. Charlie Baker as Emergency Preparedness Month.
Residents are encouraged to use resources provided by the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency to prepare for an emergency or natural disaster.
“Not only is it important to have a stockpile of supplies in case of an emergency, but it is also important to check your stockpile at least twice per year to ensure any products are not missing or expired,” Doody said. “Your emergency stockpile supplies should also be safely stored in a sealed container and kept in a place that is easily and quickly accessible.”
When creating a stockpile, buy items over a course of time, not in bulk ahead of an emergency. Abruptly stockpiling will limit the availability of necessary items in stores for others who may be in need.
The American Public Health Association recommends the following for emergency preparedness stockpiles:
* A three-day supply of food and water stored in the home. Choose food that doesn’t require refrigeration.
* One gallon of water per person/per day for at least three days.
* Do not buy in bulk, but pick up one or two items for the stockpile every time you go to the store.
* Consider purchasing items from bulk “club” stores to help save money on supplies, or purchase items such as canned vegetables and batteries when they are on sale.
* Stockpiles should be stored in a cool, dark place that is easily accessible during an emergency.
* Supplies in a stockpile should be contained in a box or plastic bin that is tightly closed to protect its contents from humidity or pests.
* Include a first aid and emergency medical kit, personal items and important documents.
* Do not “borrow” from the stockpile as it is for emergency use.
Additionally, the APHA recommends that residents check their emergency preparedness stockpile twice a year when residents change their clocks for daylight saving time. Residents should replace anything that is missing or expired at this time.