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Reducing risks with storage

One area that we all have issues with is storage. I simply do not have enough space to store all my preps in the house or the grounds of the house. It is probably just as well as I would be likely to do that and store everything there. All my eggs in one basket. Isn’t a very good way of doing things but sometimes you are driven into a position and you can do little else.

I’m lucky in some ways because I have managed to spread my preps around and thus it is unlikely I will lose them all in one go.

This creates other problems though and that is that I can’t afford to make all these locations identical. I just can’t make every storage area the same. I’m lucky though as I have managed to store similar amounts of water, food, clothing and medical items plus core items like water filters and standard tools. Some items however I have one of, I have one dinghy, one diesel generator, one oscilloscope, one lathe, etc. I just have to take the risk that they will be safe in my primary location.

To help in the event that I have to move I have also split my stores across several bags, boxes and locations at each site. This means that although all my water at each site is actually stored across separate boxes which means if I have to run for it and I don’t have time to pack simply grabbing any box will ensure that I have at the minimum 2L water, food and some first aid items plus whatever else is in that box. Obviously given time I would have sorted out exactly what I want but this is really a last ditch desperate grab when I exit quickly.

This means that I have quite a lot of smaller, cheaper items. Every box has things like water, snack bars, biscuits, a couple of dozen sachets of sugar, salt, pepper usually from McDonalds or somewhere similar plus tea bags and coffee, matches, soaps, change of underwear, emergency blankets, bandages, screwdrivers and bits sets. Most boxes have compasses, tools, first aid kits, sewing kits, a complete change of clothes, water filters and some food items like pasta, rice, biscuits and dried fruit.

Each box will also have something else in it like an axe, maps, a handsaw, spectacles of varying strengths, binoculars, games, boots, larger more obscure medical kits and/or books. No two boxes are exactly the same. One box has all the OS Landranger maps for my area and all the surrounding area, another has all the OS Explorer maps, again from my area and all the surrounding areas. I have laminated OS Landranger maps of my area, one in each rucksack plus some in other boxes. Each map comes with a map reading compass.

I have a list for each uniquely labelled box with every item I have in there. Every item is recorded, if it has 12 pencils in there then they go on the list, kids chalks, on the list. I’m anal like that and what it does mean is I can quickly look for what I want and find it.

Boxes that contain unique items, like my lab gear, are in easily identifiable boxes, no point in grabbing them as they only contain lab gear and no point in separating them out as they are pretty useless individually. So all or nothing there.

I do have some areas for concern. Some items need batteries, batteries won’t last forever and experience has shown that rechargeable batteries become permanently flat batteries pretty quick if not kept topped up and so I identify what items need batteries in each box and attach that to the outside. Thus I can hopefully grab a box of batteries as I exit to power items in the box. I also help myself by standardizing on AA batteries where possible. Of course it isn’t always possible and I have a variety of battery types I need although no key items need batteries. I have torches but I also have tea lights and hurricane lanterns.

Sounds good. Everything under control by an anal control freak. Pretty much except for one thing. A long time ago I packed several items, books, knives, lab equipment, electrical equipment away in a hurry. never documented a thing and although I know exactly where everything is. I have no idea how to lay my hands on it, whatever it is is in one of the many boxes in the loft. Put there fifteen years ago when I boxed everything while sorted out the house and I’ve never sorted the boxes because it is such a big job.

I’m starting to do that now. I need to document the books and pull information from them. Some are irreplaceable, my organic synthesis books were built up over a long time and you can’t find them now unless a decent library is closing down. Others are banned. Ooops. There I am moving up the list again.

One area that made me want to catalogue the old stuff properly is that I have been prepping since I was a kid. I was a boy scout, (They wouldn’t let me join the guides, sexual discrimination I say), and I collected many items on my travels both here and abroad. I need to catalogue them so I can sort out the illegal ones that have been forgotten about.

All in all though it is time consuming as well as boring and we all have something better to do but if, when, the time comes I will know with certainty that if I grab something and flee I won’t end up hiding out with a box full of soap and shampoos with no water, no food and nothing to keep me warm in a hostile environment.

3 comments to Reducing risks with storage

  • Fred

    Yes but why would you want to make all your storage areas the same?

  • midnitemo

    My problem is not lack of storage(yet)but bulk buying…I see a gap in my preps and I just go ahead and fill it usually in one go as I can’t resist getting the best price/freebies free delivery etc …. this is not such a problem now as I’ve got most of the essential’s laid down in decent quantities but it was an issue early on as there were some great big glaring gaps….feel less like a prepper/survivalist and more like a quartermaster now

  • Ysbryd

    Re sealable food standard barrels can be buried as a long term cashe along your planned escape route in case you need to flee your home. Food, water, knives a couple of bug out packs, boots and outer clothing……just in case.

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