May 18, 2019—What supplies would you need if a natural disaster hit your community? If you take time to prepare an emergency kit, it just might save your life.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency's Ready Campaign recommends you have a home emergency kit that could last you at least 72 hours.
Here's what you need to know about putting a kit together.
Start with the basics. Here are some items to include in a basic emergency kit:
- Water. One gallon per person per day for at least three days. Buy commercially bottled water and store it in a cool, dark place.
- Food. At least a three-day supply of nonperishable food (and a manual can opener).
- Battery-powered or hand-crank radio and a NOAA Weather Radio.
- First aid kit.
- Extra batteries.
- A whistle to use to signal for help.
- Dust masks to filter contaminated air, and plastic sheeting and duct tape you can use to shelter in place.
- Moist towelettes and garbage bags with ties (for personal sanitation).
- Wrench or pliers (to turn off utilities).
- Local maps.
There are many more items to consider including in your kit, so check out the full list.
Store supplies with care. Once you've assembled supplies, store them in airtight plastic bags. Place the bags in containers you can carry, like plastic bins or duffle bags. Also, make sure your kit stays in a designated spot you can access quickly. Every family member needs to know the location.
Consider extra kits. Prepare additional kits for other places you might be stranded, such as work and in your vehicle.
Make a maintenance plan. Replace expired items as needed and take time to rethink your family's emergency needs at least once a year.