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Isn’t it funny how we will sometimes stock dozens of cans of beans but only one can opener, or dozens of bandages but only a single scissors to cut them with? Don’t make this common mistake. Have a lot of redundancy built into your emergency preparedness. It is important, and it is necessary.

Three is two…

Have you heard of this expression: “Three is two, two is one, and one is none”? Most survivalists will know this saying. Basically is means that if you have three of a certain item, one could break, get lost or be consumed, leaving you with just two of that item. If you have two, then you really only have one, and if you have one, well, then you really have none. The thought is that if you are only prepared with a single thing, you really aren’t prepared at all. If that can opener breaks and can’t be used, opening a can of beans will be pretty much impossible.

Start building in redundancy with any items that are essential to your survival. This includes tools, food or supplies. You’ll know where to start building redundancy when you imagine living without that thing. Would you simply inconvenienced or in crisis if the item were not available?

When my daughter was a little younger, she went everywhere with a certain doll, including the bathtub or out in the mud. My husband and I named this toy “moldy baby,” because no matter how much time it spent in the washing machine and dryer or soaking in bleach, it’s little cloth body tended to get musty and unusable. Being without that doll would have been a real crisis for her, and probably the neighbors. The solution was for us to stock two extra copies of the exact same doll, which got us through my daughter’s need for her constant companion, while keeping her healthy.

Emergency supplies, tangible items that you stock, should not be the only area of redundancy in your emergency planning. You will also benefit from applying the philosophy of “one is none” by building redundancy into your emergency escape plans. You should map out at least three evacuation routes out of town, for example, in case your first route choice is blocked.

Being prepared means thinking ahead, and building redundancy into your emergency planning will put you in the best position to survive and thrive in an emergency situation.

Some more reading you might like:

What to Grab in Ten Minutes

2 Responses to “One is None: Don’t Ignore the Importance of Redundancy”

  1. millenniumfly

    And remember redundant skills too. For instance, if only one person has any medical training it’s like nobody has medical training!

  2. Curtis Blanco

    Interesting article. Never having heard this before I’ve been thinking the same thing. I bought a good but inexpensive propane stove. Coleman the manufacturer doesn’t offer spare parts for it so when its broke its broke. This stove is to cook our food (storage) in the event power goes out, so its vital we are never left with only a broken stove.

    I need to get one or two more of these stoves.