What Would You Grab First?

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I was thinking about the recent instances when people have had to leave their homes in a hurry: evacuations due to wildfires, floods, chemical or radiation leaks etc. I could not help but wonder whether it’s happening more frequently or I am just noticing it more.  I have not checked any statistics, so this is purely speculation on my part. But I wondered how many people are prepared to evacuate on a short notice.

To me, anything under an hour would be very short notice. As much as I have tried to keep most of my preparedness stuff in one place, they are still spread out among a couple of areas due to my limited space situation. I don’t think I would have everything I’d want to take with us if I only had less than an hour to gather everything.

You get awakened at 2 a.m.  The fire department is knocking on your door telling you to get out within 15 minutes.  You get the entire family within seconds, then grab the pets (if  any).  Which items would you grab first?

  • Go Bag
  • Your home safe that has all your important documents and items
  • Food and water
  • Cash
  • Your computer
  • Your guns and ammo
  • Jewelry or family heirlooms
  • Family photos?
  • Any favorite things you know you can’t replace

I don’t have any answers, each person would go for what’s important to them, and what they can get to in time.  I hope nothing like this happens, but thinking ahead helps you prepare mentally just in case.  Consider your own situation and where you have everything- can you grab everything you need and get out in time?


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  1. After looking at your list, I realize that it would be a good idea for us to keep our “grab list” on the fridge or somewhere else handy. That way, we’re less likely to forget something important in the flurry of activity. Keep things listed in order of importance, so if time is short, you have at least grabbed the MOST important items. It might even make sense to have a list for each adult in the home, so everyone can be working on something different. My biggest challenge that I still need to address is that we have 3 housecats who would need to be carried out in their carriers. We’re talking big, bulky, and heavy. It would be manageable if we had the truck, but if we have to walk out, there’s no way we could take them and I doubt that these guys could survive on their own outside.

    1. Sandy, I have 2 cats myself, and have tried to figure out ways we can take them if we had to evacuate. That would only be if we were driving out, which is preferable to having to walk out. Those carriers are bulky and heavy. Keeping a list on the fridge is a good idea, and would cut down on running around thinking about what to grab. Thanks for the comment!

  2. Howdy folks.

    Before I comment – I live in a VERY remote part of Arizona, and no longer have the same worries that I had when I lived in the silicon valley durring the Dot.Bomb days. (yep – I was a Prepper then too!)

    So, I have not thought too much about ever having to evacuate my ranch, the home I built with my two hands, my livestock, or my dogs. That said, I flat out would have to admit that I’d have no clue where to start!

    Sure as homemade prickley-pear-wine, my jeep and truck both have BOB’s, and Az being one of the free states (read as open cary), I always have a pistol on my belt, but beyond that – I’d be stuck! Thanks in advance for this little reminder. Time for this old man to set to thinking…


    1. Hey SteveinAz, That is great you already have a piece of home in a remote area. Hopefully never to be used, it would definitely not hurt to have an option to bug out “just in case” Thanks for the comment!

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