Saturday, April 25, 2009

72 hr kits--hygiene

Each week I look through the list and try to decide what is the next important thing to add. There are different aspects of important, so it is hard to say one is better than another. I remember being told by an emergency preparedness specialist that a lot of the sickness that occured after the Hurricane Katrina disaster was a result of improper hygiene. So this week lets try to gather stuff to keep us clean and prevent sickness.
-Sanitizer for hands
-Toilet paper
-Baby wipes: quick and convenient "bathing"
-Washcloth:some of you may have seen those little washcloths that start as hard circles(size of quarter) and when you add a little water it turns into a full size washcloth. I bought a bag at Walgreens for $4

-Diapers for the baby

-Toilet. You can use your 5 gallon bucket or a portable toilet. Toilets can get pricey, but are also good if you are regualr camper as well.It would be great to get a bucket($4.99 at Harmons this week) and put all of your hygiene items inside. You can also buy a toilet lid for about $10. You can gradually build your supply as you find more items.They have a little bag of enzymes that they sell at Emergency Essentials for $.60 that breaks up the waste for less smell.

-Trash bags. You would need some bags for your toilet for obvious reasons. Also for any soiled clothes, it would nice to have some ziplocs, or regular grocery sacks to maintain any bacteria or smells. I carry these with me now in case of "potty accidents" while visiting grandmas and having soiled clothes to deal with.
-Masks. These are great for filtering out smoke, dust from debri, or passing sickness. Get 12 for $1 at Dollar Tree

-Lysol: they sell those small lysols that fit in your purse.Although they tend to be the same price as a regular size the convenience and easy fit is worth it.
-Bleach. I bought one of the smallest containers to fit in my bucket. Although you should have extra bleach in your 3 mth supply in case of water contamination and cleaning.
-Latex gloves.Good way to prevent touching and spreading bacteria.Whether it is cleaning soiled clothes or helping your neighbor with a cut, gloves are the safest. (In CERT the instructor says that if it is wet and sticky and not yours, then don't touch it:) I bought a pack of 10 at the dollar store)

-Feminine supplies. You are already going to be having a bad week, lets not make it worse:)
-Trial size shampoo, soaps. I am not promising there will be a time or place available for this in a disaster but if the opportunity arises I want to be prepared. You can also include a solar shower in your 72 hr kit if that is a priority. There are basics and then there are comforts. You can also purchase a little privacy tent for about $50 to shower, dress and use the restroom for privacy. I personally plan on adding this to my supply one day, because we always rig a privacy tent out of tarp each year we go camping anyway. If it is just a few days I won't be worrying about a shower. but for others it is a must.

-Baking soda,vinegar for cleaning and nuetralizing smells. I have used these two plenty of times during the potty training phase:) This has done a better job than any store bought cleaner.

-Washing machine: This is not something that is on the basic 72 hour list, but a great extra if you have only one pair of clothes and they are getting gross. I don't know what the chances are for your washing machine to be up and running if the earthquake leveled your house:)For the machine, drill a hole in the lid and insert a plunger through hole. This is used as your agitator when you move it up and down. Inside your bucket you can store your detergent, clothes pins, rope to line dry and other cleaning agents. There is a woman in South Jordan that sells these premade for $25. She also sells toilet kits for $40 if anyone is interested let me know. She can come do a presentation to our neighborhood if there is an interest. She has a lot more great kits as well.
Start with a 5 gallon bucket and when you think of hygiene items for you, toss them in. I add more things each month.

*There may be some more items as well, but this is some ideas. Pick a few that are essential for you. Keep in mind you have to have room in your pack as well

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