Here's the 411 on emergency planning for your family: Outfit your home with battery-free eco safety gear and chill a little knowing you're prepped. 10-4?
- Eighty-sixing batteries. Noxious metals in tossed batteries (only a fraction get recycled) can leach through landfill liners into groundwater - these gadgets don't need batteries.
- Counting on renewable energy. Hand-cranked flashlights, radios, and water filters are your best bet in an emergency. Some run on solar power too for extended use.
- Figuring in kids. These tools are lightweight, uncomplicated, and easily operated by smaller hands.
- EyeMax LED Radio - solar- and hand-crank-powered AM/FM radio; 1 minute of cranking = 60 minutes radio time; plus built-in LED flashlight; runs for 25 hours fully charged ($54).
- Berkey Water Bottle - BPA-free water bottle with built-in filter gets rid of sediment, chems, and dangerous bacteria from available water sources ($28).
- Dynamo Illuminator Flashlight - windup flashlight with three LED bulbs; 1 minute of cranking = 60 minutes of bright light ($13).
- American Red Cross Safety Tube - small, simple emergency kit to stash anywhere (car, bag, etc.); contains dust mask, light stick, pealess whistle (no little ball inside), and water packet ($5).
- Ready Kids - Homeland Security Department's emergency readiness site for kids, includes work sheets for gathering emergency supplies and developing an emergency plan.