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How to Prepare an Emergency Kit

Emergencies can unfortunately happen at any given time. Whether it’s due to the weather, a fire, or any other emergency, you should stay prepared. Geographical issues can come up which can affect how you flee the area. Whether it be wildfires, tornadoes, hurricanes, flooding, earthquakes, or even attacks, it’s best to have an emergency pack so you can be well supplied. These emergency kits can be kept at home in case the weather makes it hard to escape, or even packed in the trunk of your car in the off chance that it happens there. Overall, it’s just best to be prepared because no one knows when an emergency will hit.

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Why is an emergency kit needed

During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic and every time a natural disaster such as a hurricane hits, grocery store shelves are usually picked clean. This includes bottled water, toilet paper, batteries, and even granola bars. People are fighting over these things and it’s not a pretty picture. This is a scenario that you want to avoid if you can. By building this emergency kit in advance, you can completely avoid the scenario of having to go to the grocery store as you’ll already have everything you need in advance.

Prepare your emergency supply kit

Whenever you’re building your emergency kit it’s important to ask yourself in what scenario you would need an emergency kit. You’ll also need to ask yourself who all is the emergency kit for. Emergency kits aren’t entirely a one-size-fits-all. Only you know what your needs, your family, and what your pet’s needs are.

What sort of location do you live at? This is going to heavily affect your packing. If you live in Florida, you’re going to need to pack a kit that’s more for surviving a hurricane. If you’re in Missouri, you’re most likely going to need a kit for floods and tornadoes. If you’re residing in California, you’ll need your emergency kit to help in the case of wildfires or an earthquake.

With these potential emergencies, you also need to think about where you’ll evacuate if that needs to happen. Do you have a good shelter in your house if a tornado happens? Is there somewhere that you can flee for shelter? It’s best to create two emergency kits, a portable one and the main one that’s at home. If you spend a lot of time on the road, it’s best to have one. While big natural disasters aren’t very common, it never hurts to stay prepared.

On that note, you also want to make sure you have an open line of communication with your companions. Part of this also means being able to reach out to the outside world in case cell service doesn’t work out for you. This is where a GMRS radio comes in handy. Available in portable, handheld sizes, these radios can transmit frequencies from one to two miles. While you can’t contact fellow survivors hundreds of miles away from you, you might be able to get in touch with responders that could help you that are much closer.

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Emergency kit supply list

It’s best to have a couple of plastic crates or some duffel bags that contain the items that you need.  Some of the supplies that you’ll most likely need for your emergency kit are:

  • Nonperishable food, three days to one week supply
  • Can opener
  • Lots of water, ideally four gallons per person
  • Phone charger
  • Power bank
  • Batteries
  • Reliable flashlight from
  • Copies of insurance, identification and any other documents believe would help
  • Cash, large and small bills
  • Toilet paper and towelettes
  • Season clothes
  • Masks
  • Emergency blankets
  • Extra pair of glasses or contact lenses
  • First aid kit
  • Medication
  • Sanitation tools such as hydrogen peroxide
  • SOS sign in the case you’re stranded in your car

Portable emergency kit supply list

If you decide to make a small emergency kit that can be left in your car or workplace, here are some ideas on what you provide for the portable kif:

  • Ready to eat food
  • Water
  • Power bank
  • Batteries
  • Personal toiletries
  • Copy of insurance and identification
  • SOS sign in case you’re stranded in your car
  • Pen and notepad
  • Map
  • Cash
  • Flashlight
  • Batteries
  • Small first aid kit

While this may sound like a lot, these are things that can easily fit into a backpack so it doesn’t need to be in the way. This can be tucked underneath a desk or even in the corner of your car’s trunk.

What kind of food should be packed?

At the point when a crisis hits, you can expect that cafes and supermarkets will be closed too. You’ll want to pack nonperishable food items such as beef jerky, canned goods, granola, dried fruit, energy bars, and nuts. While it’s tempting to grab the cheapest stuff, you’re better off purchasing items for the kit that you and your family enjoy. You’re already going to be in an uncomfortable and stressful situation, no need to have lousy food. Eating bad food is only going to make the morale go even lower, and everyone is already feeling the pressure. When packing food, don’t forget to pack some for your pets, and babies as well if you have one in the family.  

If you’re worried about wasting this food, just be sure to restock every six months. That way the food doesn’t go to waste so your family eats it, but you can still restock. A good rule of thumb is to change out your food every time daylight savings time occurs.

Pack plenty of water

Water is needed every day, so you can only imagine how much it’s needed during an emergency. You’ll need a clean water supply and it’s best to have your own rather than hope that you can find clean water when a natural disaster hits. As stated above, it’s ideal to have four gallons of water per person in the household. While that is a lot of water, you’ll need it in an emergency. Usually, packing cases of bottled water is far easier. These should be left in their original container and stored in a cool dark place that can be easily reached for when it’s time to grab the emergency kit. This also allows you to have the chance to work on the storage of your home

It’s best to not use water that is past the expiration date and to open it before needing it (unless the expiration date is coming close). Many families will also pack a water filter with them, as these can be greatly used during emergencies.

The idea of having to be prepared for an emergency is stressful. Nobody wants to deal with these scary situations, but by being prepared and alert, you’ll be one step ahead in getting you and your family into safety.

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