Telephones, cellphones, internet and cable are the places most of us get our information these days.  In a distater situation, landline telephones, cable, and internet providers can go down and networks get clogged, just when you need communication the most.  But there are alternate methods and I’ve listed below some types of equipment and items I recommend.

  • Battery powered commercial broadcast radio receivers

A battery powered commercial broadcast radio receiver is an essential preparedness item for the home.  In the event of power failure, you can tune to local radio for information and news on the event that is currently disrupting your life.

The C Crane CCRadio-SW (Model CSW-TCF) (affiliate link) is one I personally own and it sits on my breakfast nook table. It can be powered from the wall, D batteries OR AA batteries. It tunes the standard AM and FM commercial broadcast bands as well as worldband shortwave AM stations up to 30MHz. The FM reception is great and the sound is phenomenal with a rich, warm sound.  I’m still exploring the shortwave bands with it.

Pros: Lots of features and quality for the price

Cons: Direct frequency entry would be handy, especially for shortwave.  It also doesn’t receive SSB.

  • Alerting Weather Radio

In the United States, NOAA broadcasts weather reports, watches and warnings on stations in the 160MHz range.  Specially equipped receivers can monitor for watches and warnings for a particular area and alert you to severe weather or other impending disasters with a siren and broadcast audio.  Simple enter your county code and you will only receive alerts for that area.

MIDLAND WR300 Weather Radio (affiliate link) is the one I’ve used for years.  It has never failed to let me know of severe weather warnings issued for my area and has a loud siren that can be heard in every room of my home.  I sleep much better at night knowing this will wake me up in case of severe weather.  Of  course, you can program it to only alert for specific events.  I power mine from the wall, but also maintain the batteries for power off situations.

Pros: Program it to only receive the alerts you want for the area you want.

Cons: On a stormy night, any of these can keep waking you during the night.  But hey, it’s better than sitting up all night in front of the TV just in case a storm heads your way.