In the event of a global or national pandemic, is may become necessary for voluntary or enforced quarantines of citizens to be put into place. According to flu.gov, a pandemic outbreak of influenza would last about 6-8 weeks and at least two waves of the flu are likely in the event of a pandemic.
What would you do if there were a forced or voluntary quarantine in your area? Such a quarantine could easily last (at minimum) 6-8 weeks or more. What would it mean?
A quarantine could mean:
- Loss of income due to inability to go to work
- Reliance upon previously-stocked supplies
- Limited contact to anyone outside your home
All of these issues should be addressed when making your emergency preparedness plans. Considering that such planning can be used for any type of emergency, the quarantine scenarios could be used in the event of a blizzard, ice storm, earthquake, or any other type of manmade or natural disaster other than a pandemic.
Planning ahead for such things would include saving cash in the event of an income loss, stockpiling essential food and supplies in the event that you are not able to leave your home to shop and making a plan for staying abreast of current events and keeping in touch with friends and family.
Check with your employer about the possibility of remote work via the Internet as a means to work from home if such an event were to arise.
Sit down with your family to make a detailed list of food and supplies that your family would need for an extended period. Don’t forget toiletry items, pet supplies, hygiene and paper goods as well as bottled water and food.
Think about how many trips you make to stores during a two-month period and imagine not being able to go. Make a master list of everything your family would need during a time period. To help, make a list and write down dates of when you buy specific items and when they are used up (toilet paper, paper towels, dog food, shampoo, etc) so you can get an idea of how quickly your family uses such items. Use the same principal with food items to get a picture of how much is used and how quickly.
Use that information to create a master shopping and stockpiling list. If you have space for storage, buy extra at every shopping trip until you have a well-stocked supply. Buying a bag of flour? Buy two and store one in the freezer. Learn all you can about long-term food storage then get to work preparing your home and family for any event that would isolate you in your home for a period of time.
If your family had to be quarantined, how long would your supplies last? Leave a comment or send an email to Emergency Preparedness Examiner Tammy Lee Morris at firstname.lastname@example.org.