Home Preparedness

Being Prepared at Home

Having a preparedness kit at home is important for three reasons:

  • You may have to evacuate at a moment’s notice and take essentials with you. You will probably not have time to search for the supplies you need or shop for them.

  • You may need to survive on your own after an emergency. This means having your own food, water and other supplies in sufficient quantity to last for at least 72 hours. 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. Your supplies kit should contain items to help you manage during these outages.

Emergency Supplies

Water, food, and clean air are important things to have if an emergency happens. Each family or individual's kit should be customized to meet specific needs, such as medications and infant formula. It should also be customized to include important family documents.

Below is a list of items that should be included in your kit as well as other items than some may want to consider:

Recommended Supplies to Include in a Basic Kit

  • Water, one gallon of water per person per day, for drinking and sanitation

  • Food, at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food

  • Battery-powered 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

  • Infant formula and diapers, if you have an infant

  • Moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties for personal sanitationM

  • Dust mask or cotton t-shirt, to help filter the air

  • Plastic sheeting and duct tape to shelter-in-place

  • Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities

  • Can opener for food (if kit contains canned food)

Home Emergency Supplies

Below are some other items for your family to consider adding to its supply kit: 

Some of these items, especially those marked with a * can be dangerous, so please have an adult collect these supplies.

  • Emergency reference materials such as a first aid book – you could also have an app on your smartphone

  • Rain gear

  • Mess kits, paper cups, plates and plastic utensils

  • Cash or traveler's checks, change

  • Paper towels

  • Fire Extinguisher

  • Tent

  • Compass

  • Matches in a waterproof container*

  • Signal flare*

  • Paper, pencil

  • Personal hygiene items including feminine supplies

  • Disinfectant*

  • Household chlorine bleach* - You can use bleach as a disinfectant (diluted nine parts water to one part bleach), or in an emergency you can also use it to treat water. Use 16 drops of regular household liquid bleach per gallon of water. Do not use scented, color safe or bleaches with added cleaners.

  • Medicine dropper

  • Important Family Documents such as copies of insurance policies, identification and bank account records in a waterproof, portable container