Be prepared to survive on your own after a disaster.
This means having your own food, water and other supplies in sufficient quantity to last for at least three days. Local officials and relief workers will be on the scene after a disaster, but they cannot reach everyone immediately. You could get help in hours, or it might take days.
Basic services such as electricity, gas, water, sewage treatment, and telephones may be cut off for days, or even a week or longer. Or, you may have to evacuate at a moment’s notice and take essentials with you. You probably will not have the opportunity to shop or search for the supplies you need.
A basic emergency supply kit should include the following recommended items:
- Water, one gallon of water per person per day for at least three days, for drinking and sanitation
- Food, at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food
- Battery-powered or hand crank radio and a NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert and extra batteries for both
- Flashlight and extra batteries
- First aid kit
- Whistle to signal for help
- Dust mask to help filter contaminated air and plastic sheeting and duct tape to shelter-in-place
- Moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties for personal sanitation
- Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
- Manual can opener for food
- Local maps
- Cell phone with chargers, inverter or solar charger
Where should I store my kit?
Ready.Gov gives the following guidelines for kit storage. Take time to build kits for all three locations so you will be prepared, no matter where you are!
Keep this kit in a designated place and have it ready in case you have to leave your home or resident hall quickly. Make sure all family members or roommates know where the kit is kept.
Be prepared to shelter at work for at least 24 hours. Your work kit should include food, water and other necessities like medicines, as well as comfortable walking shoes, stored in a “grab and go” case.
In case you are stranded, keep a kit of emergency supplies in your car.
Ready.gov contains much more information about how to maintain your kit, car safety information, and tips for managing your water and other expendable disaster kit supplies.