Hurricane Sandy: What to have in your home
With Hurricane Sandy set to bear down on on the area Sunday, New Yorkers should make sure to have the following items in their homes:
Water. Buy distilled water. Water-purification tablets also can be purchased from camping supply stores. A bottle of 50 iodine-based tablets runs about $6. Two tablets usually purify a quart of water.
Ice. Keep store-bought bags in your freezer and replace them occasionally so they're fresh. Or, ice blocks can be made by filling unused plastic containers and storing them in the freezer.
Plastic coolers. Use them to store cooked food and other perishables, including medicines, on ice.
Batteries. Store a large supply of rechargeable batteries. Since they're useless if they can't be recharged, have a stash of disposable ones, too.
Transistor radio. Keep track of the news and emergency updates.
Flashlight or lanterns. Camping lanterns that burn propane or butane are handy alternatives to battery-powered units. Also, consider light sticks ($2 to $3 each) that burn for about 12 hours. Solar-powered lanterns and radios also are available.
Cooking appliance. Perishable food can be kept longer once cooked. If you don't have a grill or a portable range top fueled by propane, purchase a small charcoal-fired grill.
Matches and candles. Keep them dry by storing in a plastic or vacuum-sealed bag.
Dried food. Beef or turkey jerky and dried fruits have long shelf lives. Other nonperishables can include energy bars and cereal bars.
First-aid kit. A basic kit is a must. You might add prescription medicine, such as inhalers, based on the needs of your family. Include pain reliever, large bandages, etc.
Large plastic storage bins with locking tops. They are perfect for stocking supplies. Store them high on shelves so they'll stay dry. Keep items such as batteries and dried foods fresh by rotating them regularly.