Don’t Make These Top 5 Prepper Mistakes

Being prepared is something everyone needs to be doing. It’s a growing trend that we need to be self-sufficient and prepared for any crisis or natural disaster.
 
Survival preparedness and self-reliance is becoming a big trend in the United States. But there is also a right and wrong way to do this.
 
Think about your preparedness plan and see if you’re making one of these five mistakes.

Error No. 1 – Forgetting to Make an Emergency Plan

No matter what, you need an emergency plan. You need to know exactly what to do when a disaster strikes.
 
Your emergency plan should have:
  • A list of each family by full name
  • Home, work and school addresses
  • Local emergency contacts
  • Out-of-town contacts
  • A family meeting place.
If you have kids in school, learn the disaster response policies of the schools or day care centers. And have a back-up plan for someone to pick them up if you can’t.
 
Have at least two pre-arranged meeting places for your family and make sure the kids know where they are. And teach the children how to use 911 and rehearse what to say.

Error No. 2 – Forgetting to Rehearse a Bug-Out Scenario

Practice makes perfect. And you should practice as a family:
  • Bugging Out. See how fast you and family members can get out of the house and into your vehicle. Remember to practice turning off the water, lights, and grabbing your bug-out bags.
  • Hiking. This helps get you accustomed to the terrain if you have to practice with a bug-out situation.
  • Build a Fire. Read up on the best ways to do it and practice it several times in different weather conditions.
  • Build a Shelter. Each time you practice this activity, try to beat your previous time. Weather will be a factor. Use braches, leaves, your tarp, poncho, parachute or whatever you have available. 
  • Purifying Water. Having a portable water filter in your bug-out bag and try it with water from a river, creek, stream or lake.
  • Camp Out. There’s much you can learn about sleeping outdoors, even if it’s in your backyard the first few times.
  • Outdoor Cooking. Cooking outdoors can be far different from cooking indoors, especially when you don’t have as many materials at your disposal.
  • Identify Plants/Bugs. Know which plants and bugs are edible and which are poisonous to prevent injury or illness. 

Error No. 3 – Forgetting to Keep Supplies in a Variety of Locations

Building a primary stockpile is important. But you should also have a kit in your car, at a grandparents’ house, or a place outside like garden shed or garage.
 
Consider these factors:
  • These other stockpile locations need to be close enough to get to.
  • They need to be in a cool, dry place where your supplies won’t get damaged sunlight, moisture and extreme temperatures.

Error No. 4 – Forgetting to Pack Important Documents

In an emergency, you may not be able to bring your file cabinet with. Have copies of these important documents. They should be kept in a safe place where you can grab them quickly if necessary.
 
What are the most important documents to have at the ready?
  • Home, auto, health  policies
  • Copies of photo ID cards, including driver’s licenses, student IDs, passports
  • A list of all prescription medicines you and other family members take
  • A list of all of your banking information, including the names and addresses of your banks and the account numbers for your checking, savings and other accounts
  • Copies of vehicle titles, and property ownership records
  • Pet vet records with vaccinations. 
Keep all these documents in a safe place, such as a fireproof safe. And in waterproof plastic bags. Scanning and uploading to a USB device is also helpful.

Error No. 5 – Forgetting to Include Survival Books

We find most of our prepper information online now, but have hardcopies of books or downloading these books on your kindle or cell in the event the internet is down or you have no service.
 
Books I recommend:
  • The Prepper’s Pocket Guide
  • SAS Survival Handbook
  • Prepper’s Long-Term Survival Guide
  • 100 Deadly Skills
  • Living Ready Pocket Manual – First-Aid, Fundamentals for Survival
  • How to Stay Alive in the Woods
  • Wilderness Survival
  • Outdoor Survival Skills
  • U.S. Air Force Pocket Survival Handbook
 
Have you seen or made other prep mistakes that I didn’t list? We learn from our mistakes, and learning from others, so please share in the comment section of my blog post.
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