Securing Your Emergency Survival Food

Making your food storage area safe and steady in case of a bomb blast, earthquake or even high winds should be a priority. It would be devastating to have bags of food split open when it was tossed from the shelves. Canned foods could become dented and possibly allow botulism to form if they fell off an emergency food storage shelf. You are storing your lifeline on those shelves so it just makes sense you would want to secure the food to ensure it is still there when you need it.

food pantry-1Securing the Shelves

You don’t want your shelves falling forward and becoming a major safety hazard. If you are walking by or are taking refuge in the area the shelves are, like the basement, a shelf that tips over can trap you or even fall on you. Drill a long screw, about 3 inches, into the back of the shelf and into a beam in the wall. Use a wall anchor to make the holding more secure. If you are dealing with cement walls, there are anchor screws designed to go through the cement. You can add a little more security by putting shims at the bottom of the shelves to slightly push the shelf against the wall. These wouldn’t do much in an earthquake, but would hold the shelf up in the event of some minor vibrations or wind.

Securing the Cans and Jarsstocking up

You don’t want glass jars from home canned goods all over the place. You need to create blocks that will hold the cans and jars in place on the shelves. You can use a piece of 1×1 wood nailed across the front of the shelves or use metal strips. It is important to place the strips about halfway up the tallest can or jar to keep the items from tipping right over the top of your locking mechanism.


If you are storing food in 5-gallon buckets, be careful not to stack the buckets too high without securing them. These can be tipped over fairly easy. It could be something as slight as somebody running by and brushing along the bucket, knocking it over and your food spills out everywhere. Tie a sturdy rope, like the stuff used for clotheslines around the rim of the bucket. Tie the ends of the rope around hooks mounted to the wall. If you are stacking several buckets on top of each other, you may want to tie a rope around the top and bottom of the buckets.
These are quick fixes you could do as a weekend project. Securing your food stores is an important step in creating a food storage that will keep your family alive in the event of an emergency.

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