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Severe weather can occur in every season, but especially during winter and early summer. With preparation, coping after the storm can be made easier. The Minnesota Safety Council offers these tips to prepare for a storm.

Keep an adequate supply of food, water and emergency equipment on hand. Foods recommended for storage in case of emergency are:
  Smoked or dried meats; rice and beans
  Juices - canned, powdered or crystallized
  Soups - bouillon cubes or "dried soups in a cup"
  Milk - powdered or canned
  High energy foods - peanut butter, jelly, crackers, nuts, trail mix, energy bars
Include enough canned food to last four to five days, a hand operated can opener, and emergency cooking equipment like a camp stove, with fuel to operate it.

Each person will need a gallon of water per day for three to four days. If there is adequate warning and the possibility of being without water, fill the bathtub and large containers.

Bring emergency supplies to the safest area of your house - interior hallways, central bathrooms or closets, and basements (reinforced concrete). Basements are especially good for protection from tornadoes, but if you have a flooding problem, you may not want to go to the basement. Also, take care not to choose a "safe" place where there is an appliance or other heavy object on the floor directly above you. Heavy winds and rains can weaken walls and floors.

A Disaster Supply Kit Should Include:
  A three day supply of water (one gallon per person per day)
  Food that won't spoil and a non-electric can opener
  One change of clothing and footwear per person
  One blanket or sleeping bag per person
  A first-aid kit, including prescription medicines
  Emergency tools, including a battery-powered NOAA Weather Radio and a portable radio, flashlight and plenty of extra batteries (keep extra batteries in sealed plastic bags)
  An extra set of car keys and a credit card or cash
  Special items for infant, elderly or disabled family members
  Pet supplies
  Fire extinguisher
  Candles or kerosene lamps and matches
Keep your disaster supplies kit in a clearly labeled, easy-to-grab box.

A major storm can disrupt the normal pace of life, but with careful preparation the aftermath can be dealt with calmly.

University of Florida Disaster Handbook Guide
National Safety Council
Farmers Insurance Group
American Red Cross

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