Rotate Your Clocks – Rotate Your Stocks

It’s daylight savings time yet again. Normally that just means we lose an hour, but for those in the know it means we gain an opportunity to check up on our family’s safety. We do this by using the twice-a-year time change as a reminder to review the parts of our family emergency plans or gear that might need to be updated.

Here’s a quick list of but a few things to look at:

  1. Change your smoke alarm and carbon monoxide detector batteries.
  2. Check the batteries in your emergency gear (you should always write the dates of purchase on them).
  3. Review the expiration dates of medications (including over-the-counter stuff and meds for your pets).
  4. Conduct a fire drill along with a seasonal / regional drill such as a tornado or hurricane drill.
  5. Check the expiration dates on important documents and policies (and list all dates in a calendar program).
  6. Check the dates on any stored water you’ve put away.
  7. Rotate and/or use any food in the pantry that is approaching its expiration date.
  8. Review maintenance needs for your vehicles and other useful tools like generators.
  9. Look at the purchase or inspection dates on your fire extinguishers (do this when conducting your fire drill).
  10. Change your password and run an anti-virus and anti-spyware scan and backup your computer.
  11. Put any stored gasoline in your vehicles and refill the spare cans with fresh gas.
  12. Health improvement: review your exercise plan or get a medical / dental checkup.
  13. Update your emergency contact information.
  14. Review your emergency plans with your family and your family's emergency contact person.
  15. Log on to for additional how-to articles.

About the author: Paul Purcell is a security analyst and preparedness consultant and is the author of “Disaster Prep 101” ( Copyright Paul Purcell. Permission is granted to reprint this article provided all portions stay intact.