Learning from the Original Preppers: Disaster Readiness Tips from Utah


In modern times we’ve seen growing political and ecological uncertainty, and to an extent, this has also permeated popular culture and entertainment. From The Walking Dead and The Hunger Games to Doomsday Preppers, everybody can sense that there might be a real need to prepare for difficult times in the future.

Here in Utah, disaster readiness is a bit of a tradition. You could certainly stand to learn a few things from the local practices as you seek to become better prepared for what lies ahead.

The 72-hour kit

Mormons have long taught the value of being prepared for disaster, and their concept of a 72-hour emergency kit is now a mainstream idea encouraged by the Red Cross. Many of the supplies you’ll need for this kit are readily found in most homes.

You should only need to go out and buy a few more. You can find a sample recommended list online as a starting point. Keep in mind that you need to have one such kit for every member of the family, and have them stored in places where you can easily access them in case of an emergency or the need to evacuate.

It would also be a good idea to test the viability of the kit by living off only those supplies, whether at home or camping outdoors. And don’t forget to refresh your supplies every half year or so, as some items such as food and medications will eventually have to be consumed and replaced.

Food and water

To start thinking beyond the 72-hour timeframe, you’ll need to plan your food and water supplies – that includes considerations of how many you’re feeding, the duration you want to prepare for, and storage. Come up with a list of meals for your family, given the expected timeframe.

This way, you’ll have an estimate of how much it would cost and what sort of storage you’ll need. You don’t need to buy everything – a traditional strategy here is to grow fruit and vegetables for daily consumption, and can the rest.

Staples such as grains and beans can be bought over time and stored in bulk. You’ll want to have large containers that withstand time and elements as well; look at metal fabrication services in Utah, which are a popular choice among companies to create durable drums and containers for food storage.

Remember to rotate your stored food supplies as needed.


Preparing for a disaster should also cover the possibility of evacuation. You never know if you’ll need to leave your home due to unforeseen circumstances. Tents and other camping gear should be stored in accessible locations, along with a map marked with the place of your local community shelter.

Have a basic emergency plan that covers where everybody should go in case of an emergency so that you can all meet up after getting separated.


If you’d like to cover the possibility of a long-term scenario, then self-sufficiency becomes even more important. Learning skills such as first aid and CPR is always helpful even in short-term emergencies, but traditional survival skills can do you more good.

These include hunting, wilderness navigation, or being able to grow your own vegetables, which can prove essential in the wake of a large-scale disaster.

However, even as you prepare yourself and your family for the possibility of long and difficult years ahead, it’s worth looking back on the lessons of the Mormons: survival is about the community and helping each other.

While the church leaders do preach self-reliance, members prepare to help themselves and each other. Don’t neglect the importance of communication and cooperation in human survival.

Meta Title: Utah’s Secrets to Preparing for Emergencies: Best Practices You Can Use

Meta Description: Are you bracing yourself for a difficult or uncertain future? Here are some things to learn from Utah, where doomsday prepping originated.