In short, emergency preparedness is being ready to handle and get through something bad without any serious consequences. I guess I could just end the article there, but some people might want to elaborate.
The concept of emergency preparedness is simple, but there are many factors in actually 'being prepared if disaster strikes'. The problem is that there are so many possible types of emergencies that could happen, and we are limited as human beings to prevent or respond to all of them. This is where my math brain takes over and tells me I should use some complex algorithm to calculate which scenarios are most likely going to happen and the best tools that can help me overcome the hardships and problems associated with such emergency.
Some of this work has been done. I previously discussed the Top 10 Most Common Emergency Situations. Of course the actually results will vary by location, so it is your job as the "Prepper" to decide which scenarios more or less apply to you. This list is by no means comprehensive, there are surely other scenarios that could arise. One that isn't on this list and immediately stands out to me is the possibilty of a car accident or vehicle breakdown of some sort. I'm sure you can think of a few more to add to your personal list.
Once you have thought of all possible scenarios, you can begin to disect them to figure out what exactly is the problem. Ask yourself, "What are the immediate threats as a result of each disaster?" During an earthquake, you face the dangers of gas leaks, power outages, structural damage, falling objects and furniture. If your car breaks down you may be faced with hypo or hyperthermia, lack of communication for help, or lack of tools to rescue yourself.
So where am I going with this? There is a lot of danger out there and you should prepare properly. Don't just buy an earthquake gas shut-off tool and tell yourself that you are prepared for an earthquake and other disasters that might damage a gas line. You better teach yourself where that gas vavle is and how to use that tool. You should also take all the other steps to prepare yourself for an earthquake (or other disaster). If damaging a gas line is a real threat, then so is a falling book shelf. Maybe you have a fine china cabinet and want to secure your items so they do not break. Anchor any object in your house to the wall or ground so that a powerful force like an earthquake is less likely to cause it to fall over. Fires are another possible scenario, keep your smoke detectors up to date, batteries available, and a fire extinguisher present. Obtain the appropriate survival gear.
The point of this article isn't to discuss how to prepare for every situation, accident, or disaster. It is to simply help you define and understand the extent of true preparedness. Most people never prepare, they just wing it, and those are usually the ones that don't have the most positive outcome.
Some sources may distinguish between accident preparedness, disaster preparedness, and emergency management, but I prefer to put it all together in one category. It makes it easier on the brain and in practice. What can you do to prevent or handle a bad situation? This is all I ask. Take the steps to be ready and remember this saying we use here at Survival Camping Store:
"Survival Does Not Begin With The Tools You Have At Hand, But The Knowledge You Have In Mind"
DanieleDate 5/31/2012 3:24:00 PM
This article is so true! I see many people from all over starting to prepare for the worst, which is great, but they are often missing key components of being prepared. Most people will store certain things, but not have common safety items. Stick with this site and they will definitely help you keep your preparedness on track.