Today we will talk about items you should stock up on well in advance of any approaching storm. In my experience these items either disappear quickly or are not available during or after a storm because of power outages. During a power outage earlier this year I was at my local supermarket and took a look at items they were low or out of completely and compiled the following list.
- Batteries – These disappear quickly during a weather event. I keep enough on hand to last several days and in the variety of sizes needed for my devices. I try to keep at least 20 spares on hand in each size needed. C cell batteries seem to stay in stores longer than other sizes so I have recently purchased two flashlight that take that size battery.
- Bottled Water – The shelves were nearly empty of bottled water. Cases of individual bottles were completely gone. There were three gallon jugs left however, there were several of the larger 2.5 gallon jugs left. Unless a shipment came in these would not have lasted long.
- Propane Tanks– These are the smaller 1 lb. tanks used for Coleman stoves and lanterns. There was only 1 left on the shelf and that didn’t stay there long. The larger size tanks for gas grills were readily available at three locations.
- Hand-wipes – These were nearly gone as well but there were still several left on the shelf.
- Plastic knives, forks, and spoons- About the only thing left here were boxes of knives. Forks and spoons were in very short supply.
- Paper or Plastic Cups– Both Hot and cold seem to run out fairly quickly.
- Lamp Oil– For the old school hurricane lanterns. There was none in stock but there were wicks available.
- Kerosene (K1)- There was no shortage but several local stores were unable to pump it because of power outages.
- Gasoline No shortages if you could find a station with power.
- Candles- Limited quantities were available that were unscented.
- Rock Salt- There never seems to be any available if the storm is an ice event.
Another thing to keep in mind is to always keep some cash on hand. During a recent power outage a local store was open but could not accept credit and debit cards so all sales were cash only. There were items on this list available but at least half the customers had no cash so they were unable to purchase needed supplies.