Austin, Texas – its currently under siege by fire. Over 5,000 people have been evacuated. With that in mind, I’ve decided to talk a little bit about fire and emergency kits.
I’ve been debating whether or not to even do an emergency kit post on fire. The reason being if there is a fire in your building, home, car etc your #1 priority is to get out. It’s not worth the risking time to grab your pack when you’re evacuating. If it’s right there on your front coat rack, sure, sure…grab it. But I’ll say it again, do not waste any time getting out of the way of a fire to grab your pack.
With that said, I feel there are a few helpful products you can include in your kit in case of a fire (and in case your pack is accessible whilst evacuating), or if you have some warning before evacuating.
Fire blanket: These are intended to smother starting fires. Mainly they are used in the home, but can come in handy if you spend time camping/cooking outdoors. If you find yourself in an emergency where you have to use a flame to cook, this is definitely something you want to have around. They come in a variety of sizes and are generally packaged pretty compactly (depending on the size). Be wary of the manufacturing date if you have an old one lying around or given to you. Older blankets may contain asbestos and should be discarded.
Fire Bag: In some earlier posts, we discussed housing your Football items in a waterproof bag in your emergency kit. There is also such as thing as a Fire bag that will keep these documents safe. I’d suggest putting them in a Fire bag, then in a waterproof bag. That way, even if you can’t grab your pack during evacuation, they will still be safe. (You might also want to consider storing copies or originals in a fire safe somewhere in your home…..definitely not in your pack…..HA!)
Smoke and Gas Mask: If you’re so inclined, there are a variety of masks out there that could come in handy if there’s a fire near your area. Generally they are a combo of a mouth/nose covering and goggles. You can get professional firefighter grade masks if you want to spend a little more. I’ve also seen home and office masks between $30-$50. Having a mask in your kit is definitely a good option.
Also – there are a variety of really great fire equipment/products out there for your home or office. But since we’re talking about emergency kits, they don’t really apply. If there are those out there that would like me to take a tangent and go over fire safety for the home, please let me know.