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How to Assemble an Emergency Supply Kit

An emergency supply kit is a stash of essential items to keep in your home in the event that you have to take shelter there for a few days (also called "sheltering in place"). If you must stay indoors for safety reasons, you should be able to meet your primary needs. Plan to have enough supplies at home for at least three days for each member of your household. Keep your emergency supply kit in an easy to find, clearly labeled container; something you can access quickly in an emergency. Here are some items to include in your household emergency supply kit:

  • Emergency Kit for the Car

  • Flashlight (with extra batteries)
  • Battery powered, solar, or hand crank radio (NOAA weather radio, if possible)
  • Supply of drinking water (one gallon per person, per day)
  • Non-perishable foods – at least a three day supply for each member of your household (for example, granola and energy bars, crackers, peanut butter, canned foods with a manual can opener, dried beans, rice and non-perishable pasteurized milk)
  • First-aid kit (bandages, antibiotic ointment, sterile cloths, pain reliever/general over the counter medications/remedies, alcohol pads, tweezers, medicine dropper, scissors, eye wash solution and latex or other sterile gloves)
  • Prescription medications (a week’s supply; make sure to replace them when they expire)
  • Don’t forget about your pet! Pet food, extra water for your pet, two bowls (one for food, one for water), leash and/or rope to restrain your pet if needed, pet prescription medications (if applicable)
  • Sanitation supplies (soap, household chlorine bleach, plastic ties and plastic trash bags)
  • Whistle (in case you need to draw attention to your location)
  • Special needs items for babies, the elderly and family members with disabilities
  • Personal hygiene items (moist towelettes, toothbrush and toothpaste, feminine hygiene products and toilet paper)
  • Sturdy shoes, lightweight rain gear, emergency blanket, extra set of clothes, hat and gloves for each family member
  • Multipurpose tool; wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
  • Extra cash
  • Copies of important personal documents (insurance cards, birth certificates, marriage license and photo IDs) in a waterproof, portable container
  • Dust mask, duct tape and plastic sheeting to shelter in place
  • Extra sets of car and house keys

    Looking for more emergency preparedness ideas? Check out the “Helpful Preparedness Reading” page listed below for quick links and pdf documents from our partners in emergency preparedness.

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      Public Health Preparedness
      Donielle Allen
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