Lighthouse for the Blind assembles earthquake survival kits

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OLIVETTE, MO (KTVI) – It’s called a handheld ruby; a visual aid for someone with low vision. Friday afternoon it was helping to make sure all the ingredients were part of an earthquake survival kit.

“This just makes the print larger so that visually impaired people can read the small print,” says Patricia Miller, production planning coordinator at Lighthouse for the Blind.

Miller was gathering all the gear needed in case of an earthquake, tornado, flood, or worse. Inside their west St. Louis County facility, you’ll notice wide aisles, and that the yellow-marked tracks which help visually impaired workers are next to the quake care assembly line.

“When you hear about an earthquake or tragedy on the news, that’s more when I get a prideful feeling for what I do, because I know these kits are going to help,” Miller says.

The kits are assembled by the 47 legally blind employees at Lighthouse for the Blind. Leave it to the Lighthouse to be the ones to light the way in an emergency.

In 2014, the non-profit bought the assets for Quake Kare Inc., the leading maker of emergency and survival kits, as a way to create revenue to support their mission. So not only is it a good program, but it’s a great kit.

“In a true emergency situation, you need seven things,” says Brian Houser, director of sales and marketing at Lighthouse for the Blind. “You need food, water, shelter, first aid, light, and communications. Our disaster kits are built with all those things in mind. Everything you need for a true disaster is put together for 72 hours.”