Letter Re: My Bug Out Bag Was a Blessing When the Tornados Arrived

Thank you for providing all the information in SurvivalBlog. It is truly a lifesaver. I live in Arkansas, and I’m sure you’ve seen the devastation the tornadoes have caused. This season is possibly the worst I’ve seen in the past 20 years that I’ve lived here. The tornadoes and severe weather have pummeled our state. Thankfully, when disaster strikes, neighbors help neighbors, strangers, and everyone in between. I wanted to tell your readers who haven’t considered the value of neighbors, who have a go-it-alone attitude, they are more valuable than all the gold you could stockpile. When the tornadoes come through, all my neighbors get under one house – the only house in the neighborhood you can get under. All the other houses are on slabs, but none are sturdy enough to really hold up to 100 m.p.h. winds.

Knowing that there will be at least 8 of us and 12 pets, we’ve made some small changes. We’ve placed bottled water, blankets, tarps, and kennels for our animals under the house. I’ve also beefed up my bob bag with consideration to the storms. I’ve added a portable weather radio, battery powered fans, a strand of battery powered Christmas lights (they can light up areas where other lights can’t fit), a gas meter (you don’t want to be close to a natural gas leak), a medium duty stapler (just in case you have to secure a tarp quickly), and last but not least, dog biscuits. They are a small comfort to animals in stressful situations, like being in a kennel under a house for extended periods of time.

Something else I would recommend to your readers are natural gas or LP standby generators. They are expensive, but worth every penny. Also consider a little red wagon, yard cart, or roll around suitcase. When bad weather is coming, and you know you will need more than just a BOB bag, cases of water and snacks are easier to transport on wheels. I hope you will emphasize that a BOB bag is essential in times like these, not just TEOTWAWKI.  

Remember, it might take a while for help to reach you. You will want neighbors who will be willing to risk their neck for you when you are in need. I know that while most of my neighbors are not as prepared as they should be, I will try to take up the slack, just for having the security that I can count on them when the times get bad. – Mrs. D. in Arkansas