Do you have a “Grab and Go Bag?”

Do you have a “Grab and Go Bag?”

 Emergency preparedness can mean many things. I was born and raised in Southern California. We were earthquake prepared with water, food, clothes, and tools. Having lived in many places in the United States and overseas, both as a military person and as a civilian, my family and I have frequently addressed the issue of what to be prepared for: Fire, Flood, Wind, Rain, in addition to Earthquake.

Planning ahead takes time and effort, and some resources, some of which will go out of date. Many local governments promote its residents to be prepared with a “Grab and Go Bag”. The GGB’s come in many sizes and contents based upon the perceived threat of catastrophe. Most of the GGB’s are designed to take care of basic needs for 72 hours. In recent weeks, victims of fire and flood have needed even more than that limited time to take care of themselves.

Since this is the planning time of year, I’m challenging readers to access their catastrophic threats and design or purchase their own GGB. Here are some of the basics that apply to most terrible situations:

  • Having enough of this basic need should be a top priority. Large or small bottles are typical. Water heaters and toilet tanks can help in the direst circumstances.
  • Energy and protein bars are good. Cans of all sorts of vegetables, soup, meats, and fish can round out the supply.
  • Foil blankets, socks, and clothes changes are critical is many situations.
  • Electronics like battery operated radios, flashlights, and extra batteries.
  • Can opener, plastic bags, twist ties, toilet paper and moist toilettes round out some of the essentials.
  • Important papers like passport, marriage license, family records, and items which aren’t recorded anywhere else.

FEMA, our government’s emergency agency, has a complete list at

Also, think about becoming a volunteer in your community. CERT which stands for Community Emergency Response Team training is probably available near you. Look them up online. Remember the Scout Motto: Be Prepared.


Jim Ludwick
Jim Ludwick

Jim Ludwick is the founder of MainStreet Financial Planning. His varied education and life experiences have enabled him to apply his knowledge and experience into useful solutions for personal financial problems. His writing and broadcasting activities allow him to help many more than just individual clients. He loves a microphone.

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