Disaster Kits

Things You Will Need if You Stay at Home

All Americans should have basic supplies on hand to survive for at least three days if an emergency occurs. Below is a checklist of some basic items that every emergency supply kit should include. It is important that individuals review this list and consider where they live and the unique needs of their family in order to create an emergency supply kit that will meet these needs. Individuals should also consider having at least two emergency supply kits; one full kit at home and smaller portable kits in their workplace, vehicle or other places they spend time. Items may be stored in a 32-gallon trashcan, suitcase, duffle bag, backpack, footlocker, or individual packs for each family member.

The Hurricane Shopping Guide is a downloadable eight week shopping guide to create your own disaster kit, courtesy of Santa Rosa County Emergency Management.  Another good source is the Emergency Supply Checklist found in the Santa Rosa Emergency Management Disaster Guide.

Water

Water should be stored in plastic containers. Avoid using containers that will decompose or break. Store one gallon of water per person per day. It is also a good idea to fill bathtubs and sinks with water for sanitation use. Water purification agents such as bleach should also be on hand.

Food

Store at least a three day supply of non-perishable food. Select foods that require no refrigeration, cooking or preparation. If you must heat food, pack a can of sterno.

First Aid Kit

It is a good idea to have two first aid kits. One for your home and the other for your car. Your kit should include things like bandages, scissors, tweezers, soap, latex gloves, lubricant, assorted size safety pins and any non-prescription drugs deemed necessary.

Tools & Other Supplies

You should have a basic tool kit with items you feel are necessary to make temporary repairs after the storm. Some other items you should consider are plastic sheeting, paper plates and plastic utensils, flashlights and a battery operated radio with plenty of spare batteries, non-electric can opener, fire extinguisher, tent, matches, aluminum foil, plastic storage containers, plastic garbage bags, small shovel, insect repellent and personal hygiene items.

Clothing & Bedding

Some clothing and bedding items should be protected by placing them in waterproof boxes, plastic bags or other suitable containers. Include at least one change of clothing and footwear per person. Some items to consider are work boots and gloves, rain gear, blankets or sleeping bags, towels, hat, sunglasses.

Special Items

Always remember family members with special needs. For children you should have plenty of necessary baby formula, diapers, bottles and medications. Adults with medications such as insulin or other prescription drugs should have their prescriptions filled before the storm. Don't forget any denture needs and eyeglasses or contacts. You should also have some form of entertainment for everyone including books for adults. Keep all-important family documents safe and in a waterproof container. Items for consideration to keep safe are wills, insurance policies, bank account numbers, credit cards, a phone book, and a household inventory complete with serial numbers and pictures or video. All of these might come in very handy after the storm.