By Paisley Hansen
Living in a remote cabin out in nature is a dream, but isolation does have some disadvantages. Cabin owners can have a hard time during emergencies like natural disasters, but there are things you can do to lessen your risk of danger and damage to your property. If you want to prepare your new cabin for an emergency, here are some steps you can take.
Know Your Area
You should get to know the potential dangers of your area before moving in, because this can impact things like your insurance. You should know how close you are to water, if the area gets a lot of tornadoes, hurricanes, or floods. This can help you protect your house early and can greatly impact your emergency plan. Where is the closest hospital, fire department, or emergency shelter? Do you have neighbors nearby that you can rely on for help? Who takes care of emergency alerts?
Know Your Home
An emergency can bring to light just how much you don’t know about your cabin. Do you know how to work your drawout circuit breaker? Do you know how to turn your water off? In case you lose power or heat, do you know how to use your fireplace safely? This is also the time to figure out which bathroom you’ll use to store water and check if your basement sump pump is working. In case of a tornado, where will you hide and wait? Decide where you want to keep all your emergency supplies and choose someplace accessible. If you have a large house, it can be difficult or even dangerous to run around gathering important paperwork and canned food.
It’s never a bad idea to stock up on food and other items you can use in an emergency. Canned and dry goods last a long time and are relatively cheap. If you’ve got a camper stove, you can even make some pretty tasty meals. Don’t forget to buy and store clean water as well. Many people choose bottled water or gallon jugs, but canned water often has a longer expiration date. If you have a generator, you may want to keep some gas in stock, which can also be used for your car if you need to leave. Ideally, you’ll have a chance to fill up your car if you have prior warning.
Pack an Emergency Kit
Everyone’s emergency kit is likely to look a little different. You should have the basics, like a first aid kit, flashlights, candles, lighters, batteries, a radio, and a small tool set. Items like plastic sheeting, whistles, and maps of the area will come in handy if you need to leave your home. Gather your important documents, or copies of documents, in a waterproof document bag or box. It’s also not a bad idea to have some cash on hand.
In case you need to leave quickly, pack everything in a high quality bag or backpack with a change of clothes for everyone in your household, and don’t forget an extra pair of socks!. Throw in some other warm weather clothes if you have room. Even summer nights can get cold, especially in a storm.
Have a Plan
Having an emergency plan in place means you don’t have to panic or think about what to do when an emergency strikes. Know where to grab your bag, how to turn off your power and water, and several emergency routes to take out on the road. If you have a family, you may want to consider a special word that lets everyone know to gather in a specific room. You may even want to give each kid their own bag. You can also collaborate with neighbors so that your children know where to go if their parents aren’t there.
Emergencies can be terrifying, especially if they’re sudden. When you take the time to know your surroundings and prepare accordingly, you can react faster and more safely when disaster strikes.
Paisley Hansen has worked in real estate most of her professional career. She graduated from the University of California – Berkeley with a bachelor’s degree in Marketing. When she’s not creating content or working with clients, she enjoys hiking and traveling with her husband.