Building a Preparedness Kit

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If a disaster strikes your community, you might not have access to food, water, or electricity for some time. Take steps now to put together an emergency supply kit so that you will be prepared in case something happens. You should have emergency kits for your home, office, school, and vehicle. You never know where you will be during an emergency.

Assemble the following items to create kits to use at your home, office, school and/or in a vehicle:

  • Water—one gallon per person, per day
  • Food—nonperishable, easy-to-prepare items, two weeks of food
  • Flashlight
  • Battery powered or hand crank radio (NOAA Weather Radio, if possible)
  • Extra batteries
  • First aid kit
  • Medications (7-day supply), other medical supplies, and medical paperwork (e.g., medication list and pertinent medical information)
  • Multipurpose tool (e.g., Swiss army knife)
  • Sanitation and personal hygiene items
  • Copies of personal documents (e.g., proof of address, deed/lease to home, passports, birth certificates, and insurance policies)
  • Cell phone with chargers
  • Family and emergency contact information
  • Extra cash
  • Emergency blanket
  • Map(s) of the area
  • Extra set of car keys and house keys
  • Manual can opener

Once you’ve gathered your supplies, pack the items in easy-to-carry containers, clearly label the containers, and store them where they are easily accessible. In a disaster situation, you may need access to your emergency supply kit quickly - whether you are sheltering at home or evacuating. Make sure to check expiration dates on food, water, and batteries throughout the year.

  • Food and water for at least 3 days for each pet; bowls, and a manual can opener.
  • Depending on the pet you may need a litter box, paper towels, plastic trash bags, grooming items, and/or household bleach.
  • Medications and medical records stored in a waterproof container.
  • First aid kit with a pet first aid book.
  • Sturdy leash, harness, and carrier to transport pet safely. A carrier should be large enough for the animal to stand comfortably, turn around, and lie down. Your pet may have to stay in the carrier for several hours.
  • Pet toys and the pet's bed, if you can easily take it, to reduce stress.
  • Current photos and descriptions of your pets to help others identify them in case you and your pets become separated, and to prove that they are yours.
  • Information on feeding schedules, medical conditions, behavior problems, and the name and telephone number of your veterinarian in case you have to board your pets or place them in foster care.