Dangerous weather and hazardous conditions may occur at a moment’s notice. Therefore it is important to stay ready. One way of doing that is with personal protective equipment (PPE). Build a kit with the following safety gear and supplies you need. They have features that help keep you safe, remain visible, and stay prepared.
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) – Build a Kit
Because the United States has such varied weather and climates, build a PPE kit. Storms, natural disasters, and other events require the right supplies. According to the United States government, basic emergency kits should include a variety of items. These items will depend on your location, the time of the year, and the number of people in your household. Consider the unique needs you or your family require. It is also recommended to store your items in an easy-to-carry container or bag.
First of all, staying dry during a storm is important. Rain gear not only protects your clothing, it protects your body as well. Wear high visibility rain gear in orange and yellow/lime with silver reflective stripes. During times of poor visibility or at night this weatherproof apparel serves double-duty. Rain jackets, suits, coats, and pants provide layers of protection. Name brands include River City, ML Kishigo, and Radians. Most items meet ANSI class 2 and 3 safety ratings. Look for items with hoods, pockets, and water-repelling PVC material.
Next, protect your feet from flood waters, mud, and puddles with durable rain boots. Dunlop and River City boots and overshoes feature waterproof PVC or rubber material. There are styles for men and women. Quality rain boots provide comfort and protective outsoles during inclement weather. Rain boots come in a variety of sizes, styles, and colors. Steel toe rain boots offer additional protection on job sites.
In addition to rain gear, storm conditions require backup lighting sources. Power outages often result from extreme weather, so stay prepared. Add handheld flashlights, headlamps, and lanterns to your PPE kit. Energizer rechargeable batteries and extra power sources will keep the lights on during prolonged outages. Bayco LED rechargeable flashlights provide bright light that lasts for hours. The small lightweight design is easy to transport and store.
Another storm ready supply item is batteries. Electronics, small appliances, and many other items include battery backup power. If the power goes out you can run items with batteries. They come in sizes like A, AA, AAA, C, and D cell. Industrial strength and rechargeable batteries last and are economical in bulk case quantities. Name brands like Energizer, Duracell, and Rayovac make batteries for a wide range of uses. Store batteries in a cool dry place to extend their life and to keep them ready when you need them.
While planning your PPE kit, make sure to include first aid supplies. Items like bandages, medicines, and burn treatments. Eye care and emergency supplies are available in some first aid trauma bags. Select from Ergodyne, North, and OK-1 brands. There are also biohazard and multi-person first aid kits. Trauma bags are ideal for first responders, medical personnel, and firefighters. They store the necessary supplies for emergencies and are easy to transport.
Dust masks (face masks) are beneficial for filtering contaminated air. Also, they’re used for handling plastic sheeting or from staying at a shelter-in-place. Disposable dust masks can provide basic protection for when you’re in a pinch. A few brands include 3M, ERB Safety, Honeywell, and PIP. They are not meant for any contaminants that are unknown. Or if the air is immediately dangerous to life (possibly from chemicals), you should not try and use the mask.
Rubber / Protective Gloves
Protecting your hands is another important aspect of storm kits. Depending on the conditions you can face, can determine the type(s) of gloves you may need. Use protective gloves when you need clean up debris after a storm. For example, a leather glove could do the trick. If the area has flood water, it’s particularly safer to double up with a disposable glove. Flood water can contain contaminants such as sewage or chemicals. If you are stranded somewhere cold then a weatherproof glove would prove to be ideal. Keep snow and ice from melting through while keeping your hands warm. Popular brand names for gloves include DeWalt, Ergodyne, Global Glove, Memphis, and PIP. With so many styles, choose a glove that fits the type of weather you would like to prepare for.
Incident Command Vests
Responding to preparedness or clean-up, incident command vests help let you stand out. Another good item to add for your Personal Protective Equipment Kit, if you’re going to be outdoors. Many public safety vests are for police, firemen and EMS workers. There are still plenty of styles that the general public can wear as well. Safety vests with screen printing on the back; with the text that says “Volunteer.” Access to multiple color safety vests can help color-coordinate volunteers and workers. Brands that carry incident command vests include Full Source, ML Kishigo, and PIP. They can range with the standard colors such as Black, Blue, Green, Red, Yellow, and more.
Winter Kit – Blankets, Balaclavas, Hand Warmers
Staying warm can play a major role, after an emergency. When creating your PPE kits for cold weather go for items to keep you warm. Items that you could include are blankets, balaclavas, and hand warmers. The type of blanket you choose should be weatherproof. The Port Authority travel blanket provides warmth without letting moisture through. Balaclavas or beanies help to keep your head warm. Since much of the body heat can escape through one’s head, it’s important to keep it bundled up. Hand warmers (ERB Hothands) are little packets that can provide instant warmth for up to 4 hours. You can use them for your hands or other parts of your body.
In conclusion, the weather can be a blessing or a curse. And when it gets ugly, staying prepared can make all the difference. No matter the location, the threat of storms can affect all the US. It’s important to keep a stocked basic emergency kit with personal protective equipment. Since you never know where you’ll be when disaster hits, keep a kit handy in your home, work or car. Build a storm ready Personal Protective Equipment kit to be prepared for if disaster ever strikes.