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Gadgets to Get You through Emergencies

If a tornado suddenly hit, or an earthquake, or a blackout, would you be prepared?

"Early Show" contributor and CNET Senior Editor Natalie Del Conte says technology can come to the rescue - if you have the right items around the house. She showcased several, and offered tips that would surely come in handy should you be faced with an emergency.

LIGHTS

One of the first things to go in an emergency situation is power. And with power go most of the lights. So when the chips are down, how do you find your way?

Energizer Multi Function Lantern
Price: $22
Where to buy: Amazon.com
First of all, when emergencies happen, LED lights are a great way to go, as they run longer, and they run brighter. And these lamps are VERY bright. Energizer Weather Ready Multi Function Lantern runs on 3D long lasting Energizer Max alkaline batteries, for up to 500 hours. Functions as a room-filling area light or Amber LED nightlight, and has the detachable LED pocket/keychain light for all other occasions. Carrying handle for portability and a hanging clip on bottom for positioning a sturdy stable light source. Packed with 3 long lasting D Energizer Max alkaline batteries and a lifetime guarantee on the LED bulb.

Energizer Multi-Function Lantern
Price: $27
Where to Buy: Amazon.com
Energizer Weather Ready Folding Area Lantern provides 245 hours of LED room light. This one is a little more expensive than the lantern above as it COMES with replaceable bulbs. It features 3 light modes; High, Low and Nightlight. The 8 LED's can light a entire room and folds for storage when not in use. There is a convenient carrying handle for placement and portability. Lifetime guarantee on the bulbs, so rest easy.

EXTRA BATTERY POWER FOR PORTABLE DEVICES

Energizer Energi To Go XP2000
Price: $40
Where to Buy: Energizer.com
This is a unit that has to be kept charged at all times, but if it's kept on charge until needed it will power portable electronics for up to 12 extra hours. The unit comes with an AC and auto charger as well as a USB charger for computers. It comes with 6 different charging tips to fit all sorts of devices. But it also comes with a useful warranty: If the package, which comes with six power tips, didn't come with the right tip for your cell phone or other device, Energizer will provide the correct one at no cost. In addition, users are entitled to two free tips a year for the life of the charger-a nice extra that comes in handy if you change phones.

Energizer Energi To Go SP2000
Price: $99
Where to Buy: Energizer.com
This powers portable electronics with solar power. That means you can get all the uses of a great extended cordless power pack, but without having to plug anything in. Simply leave in the sunlight. When used properly, this device can provide 12 hours of extra talk time on a phone, 60 hours of music time on a portable media player, 12 hours of game time on a portable gaming device, and 750 extra photos on a digital camera. It uses a lithium polymer battery, which means it is non-flamable. And, once charged, it maintains that charge for a year.

OTHER TYP-ES OF DEVICES

Light My Fire Swedish Firesteel Mini
Price: $8
Where to Buy: REI.com
This fire starting kid travels easily and brings fire when you need it. It's 1.5 inch rod emits 5,500 degree sparks which can ignite a stove, paper, grass or bark. It works well at any altitude, works wet or dry, and it comes with a cord to keep the striker and rod together so you don't lose either one. It is approved for use by the International Survival Instructors Association.

Eton American Red Cross Emergency Crank Radio
Price: $40
The American Red Cross crank radio is so compact that you can easily store in a safety kit or toss in your rucksack. It has a high-quality AM/FM tuner, providing you with news, entertainment and public service announcements. It also integrates a NOAA Weather Band receiver that brings you weather forecasts, alerts and other emergency messages -- information vital during severe weather conditions. At only 5.25 inches it literally fits in the palm of your hand. It also includes a powerful solar panel, which gives you the freedom to explore without the hassle of batteries or adapters. There is also a full sized USB port to easily charge any small electrical device such as an mp3 player or cell phone. You'll always know what's going on, thanks to the AM, FM and NOAA Weather Band tuners.

Katadyn Water Bottle Micro-Filter
Price: $40
What's great about this filter is that it's just a bottle. No matter where you are you can rest assured that your drinking water is safe, it's as portable a filtration system as you get. Simply fill and drink. It has a cartridge inside the bottle that filters chemicals, and it delivers 26 gallons per cartridge. Bottle holds 21 fluid ounces of water, and it has a hooked top so it can attach easily to your bag.

TIPS

KEEP YOUR VALUABLE DOCUMENTS IN A FIRESAFE and BACK UP YOUR FILES ON A USB STICK

Keep your important documents in a fire safe box, which will protect them in both fire and flood. Birth certificates, photos, social security cards, legal documents can all be kept in this box. But valuables aren't just documents you can hold, what about all the information on your computer? Keep a USB backup stick with everything on your computer in your firesafe AS WELL AS A USB backup keychain. No matter what happens, your computer is in your firesafe, and is also with you at all times. We like the SentrySafe 500 Fire-Safe Box for $25 and the LaCie WhizKeys of various memory capacities from $20-$30.

TEXTING

In the event of an emergency, landline phones are often the first to be knocked out or overwhelmed. Text messaging, via your cell phones can be the most reliable means of communicating.

A TRADITIONAL CORDED TELEPHONE

Many people have gotten rid of their standard phone lines in favor of cell phones. But frankly, a good old fashioned telephone with a cord may be the only one that works in the event of a power outage.

POWER STRIPS

A basic surge protecting power strip is virtually a no-brainer for any kind of delicate electronic hardware. But if you run a business and the power goes out suddenly, you can be stuck with corrupted data, or worse, damaged PCs. A simple solution is an uninterruptable power supply, and that means power strips.

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