Earthquakes in Puerto Vallarta
It’s time to talk about earthquakes again. We hit on this subject about once a year and this time we’re going to talk about what you need on hand. These are the essentials.
Water. Lots of water. This is probably the hardest need to fill. It’s also a tough one to find extra storage. However, in Puerto Vallarta you have the advantage of buying garafones. Those are the large bottles you buy from the noisy guy who yells AGUA and rings his bell to let you know he’s in your neighborhood. Get a couple extras and store them in a closet. Depending on how many in your family, we suggest a garafon per person. Once opened, save the cap so you can keep the water clean. Get a pump at Walmart so you can leave the garafon on the floor. Our first few years in Puerto Vallarta, these large bottles were made of glass, heavy and cumbersome. Now they are heavy plastic and much easier to manage.
Emergency kit. You can get one of these on Amazon, or Red Cross has a real nice one that comes in a handy backpack but you can also put one together for yourself. Important documents should go in this easy to grab pack, sealed securely in plastic. Property deed, passports, birth certificates, immigration papers and voting registrations; if you keep these things with your kit you’ll always know where to find them. Cash; ATM’s will not be working. A small AM/FM radio, with batteries and headphones; flashlights (we have a couple small, powerful ones and a large cluncky one that has several features); a whistle, like what policeman use (this will serve you well if you need to be found and no one can see you); matches (but don’t light them if you smell gas); dust masks (several, as they can get soiled very quickly); wet wipes; an emergency survival blanket for each person; a basic first aid kit; protein bars and other nonperishable goods that you can eat without heating or adding water. Water purification tablets (each tablet purifies 1 liter of water); a crescent wrench, which is a good thing to have for turning off valves like water and gas.
These are basic survival items. We always keep an extra remote battery charged up for our phone and for general purposes, we try to not let our phones get below 40%. We keep a fire extinguisher in our kitchen and another in the laundry room; highly recommended.
FEMA advice is to [Drop, Cover, and Hold On; Take cover under a sturdy desk, table, or bench, or against an inside wall, and hold on. If there is no desk or table near you, cover your face and head with your arms and crouch at an inside corner of the building.]
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