Thursday, October 22, 2020


Mesonet at SD State Eagle Butte realtime weather web widget

Home repair and maintenance tips


Greetings everyone and thanks for your continued following. It has been a true joy to be a part of your community again this year with the lawn and garden tips column and I hope you enjoy my tips on home care as well.

In the last week there has been at least one brush fire that I know of, so to start I will go over some basic wild fire safety tips. Even though it’s cooler now, things still remain dry and wildland fires will be a concern until after our first good snow blanket. These tips are not the only solutions, but is a list of things to prepare for that in my opinion will help, but nothing is a guarantee. For more information always consult local emergency responders for up to date information for our area.

Perimeter of defense

Figure 30 feet from your home to an outer perimeter in all directions, make sure all brush and grass is cut down below knee height at minimum.

Keep firewood, lumber and other items covered with a canvas tarp that is treated for flame resistance.

Keep all liquid fuels outside of this perimeter.

Be a good neighbor and work together with others who may need help getting their perimeter made who are unable to do it alone.

Mandatory or voluntary evacuations

Have all your documents in order in one ready to go box.

Keep enough gas in your car to get to the next town at least. For myself that is Dupree or 22 miles and that’s 1.5 gallons of gas. You may not have to go that far, but be ready to. If you do not have a car, notify emergency services of your location, and needs for safe evacuation such as a wheel chair assist.

If you have relatives who are disabled or healing from injury, be ready to go at least 30 minutes sooner than you need to evacuate. This will allow time to get everyone evacuated safely.

Plan to take your pets with you and if you have a service animal, make sure you have their leash and other items like their vest ready to go, along with a days dry food.

Bug out or go backpack

Each family member should have a back pack on the ready with the following items.

• One change of clothes you don’t mind ruining (you may be

in outside shelters at some point)

• 1 hand towel and wash rag

• 1 bar soap

• 1 roll toilet paper

• Light coat or hoodie sweatshirt

• 24 oz of water

• Bandana for Covid or smoke to filter air

• three days prescription medication

• Small flashlight if your phone does not have one.

• Phone cord and charger

• $20.00 cash (if power is out, cash is your only option)

• 1500 calories in snacks (1 candy, 1 item protein packed, dried

fruit but keep alergies like nuts, coconut and other ingredients

in mind to prevent alergic reactions)

• EPI pen if prescribed

• Emergency foil blanket

• Emergency contact list of relatives and people you trust as

well as a planned meeting place 8 hrs later if you get

separated.

• 1 person first aid kit, this is two 4×4 pads, hand sanitizer,

three wound wipes, six bandaids, first aid tape, a bandana,

pencil and antibacterial cream or gell (it’s not a full kit, but it

can do a lot in a pinch)

• 1 6×6 foot tarp for emergency shelter close to ground level

• Red cloth and 2 inch square mirror (or signaling for help)

When making a back pack, think of your own and families bare basic needs to survive 12 to 36 hours. Remember surviving does not mean comfortable, just survival until help comes or you reach help.

If you live in the country, adjust your backpack list to meet your own most basic needs.

In a natural disaster, remember local phone and cell lines may be down for some time, so have a plan to make contact by phone with a friend or relative who’s number is long-distance as these calls will be easier to make. Have in your plan a code word for safe and one for in danger for texting unique only to your household so when it’s received the recipient knows who it is, this allows you to save battery life.

Last but not least, turn off your propane tank before leaving. This may save your home or the life of a first responder.

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