Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Coffee and Disaster Preparedness

What do you do to prepare for a hurricane? Buy some extra boxes of cereal or canned pineapple? Stock up on the TP and make sure all the flashlights are working? Well, FEMA says you're doing  it wrong.

I know better than any American that coffee is key to happiness. But I'm not sure that officials at FEMA had it right when they named things like "instant coffee" as a necessity when preparing for a hurricane:

"Food items that you might consider including in your disaster supplies kit include: ready-to-eat meats, fruits, and vegetables; canned or boxed juices, milk, and soup; high-energy foods like peanut butter, jelly, low-sodium crackers, granola bars, and trail mix; vitamins; foods for infants or persons on special diets; cookies, hard candy; instant coffee, cereals, and powdered milk."

If you've ever tasted instant coffee, you know it is probably the last thing that will keep you calm when the world around you is literally crashing down.

FEMA also advises the use of coffee filters during the storm, and this one makes a little more sense:

"There are many ways to treat water. None is perfect. Often the best solution is a combination of methods.  Before treating [water], let any suspended particles settle to the bottom, or strain them through coffee filters or layers of clean cloth."

Read more about the FEMA way of preparing for a hurricane here.

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