Disaster Supplies for Your Home

Jul 15, 2021

In this week's video we cover what should be in your disaster kits and where they should be stored. Come learn the significance of a box of red wine in this week's video too.

Today we go over the essential items you need in your kit(s) and where should you store the kit(s):

Firstly, let’s talk to the time. For your home kit, you are making an assumption that your house weathered the interruption well and that you just need to fend for yourself and your loved ones for a period of time. So, how long should you plan for? We recommend having enough supplies to take care of your household for 2-3 weeks.

Most emergency preparedness people will start with water and food, which I rank extremely high. However, if you plan to take the time to build your kit, then I would encourage you to begin with what you are going to want after an interruption. Really think about it for a moment. You have just been through an earthquake, tornado, blizzard, windstorm, or some of form a calamity and you responded appropriately and are now trying to begin your recovery process. What do you want?

For me, I want two things. My comfy blanket is the key to getting a good night’s sleep and wine is key to keeping me calm. Yep, I said it, I have a box of red wine in my disaster kit. I chose red wine, as it does not need to be chilled and the box rather than bottle, so that it won’t be damaged by the event. Now take a second to think about what you want in your kit……………………………………………………………….Maybe it is diet soda, chocolate, candy, chewing gum, energy bars, carbonated flavored water, etc. Whatever you determine, make sure to build the rest of you kit around that item.
Then you want to ensure that you have enough water and non-perishable food for your household to last for 2-3 weeks. You will want 1-gallon/person to cover our food preparation, drinking, and hygiene. There are several ways to store water. You can store pouches, invest in water purification systems, rotate 5-gallon jugs, and access water in your water heater (not instant heat tanks) and the tank of your toilet (not the bowl).
The Red Cross also recommends that you have the following, at a minimum:
• Flashlight
• Extra batteries
• Battery-powered or hand crank radio (NOAA Weather radio preferred)
• Copies of personal documents (medication list, proof of address, deed/lease home, passports, birth certificates, insurance policies, etc.)
• Over the counter medications
• Prescription medications
• Multi-purpose tool
• Sanitation and hygiene items
• Cell phone & Chargers
• First Aid Kit
• Family emergency contact information
• Extra cash
• Emergency blanket
• Map(s) of the area and GPS apps

Personal Items to Consider for your Individual Family Needs:

• Medical Supplies (hearing aids & extra batteries, glasses, contact lenses, syringes, etc.)
• Baby supplies (bottles, formula, baby food, diapers, wipes, etc.)
• Games and activities for children (options to draw out emotions, as studies show recovery is faster if given opportunity to emote through drawing) • Pet supplies (collar, leash, ID, food, carrier, bowl, baggies, kitty litter, list of hotels/motels that take pets, etc.)
• Two-way radios
• Extra set of car keys & house keys
• Manual can opener

Additional Supplies to keep at home or in your survival kit based on the types of disasters common to your area:
• Whistle
• N95 or surgical masks
• Waterproof matches
• Rain gear
• Towels
• Work gloves
• Tools/supplies for securing your home
• Extra clothing, hat, and sturdy shoes
• Plastic sheeting
• Duct tape
• Scissors
• Household liquid bleach (not scented)
• Entertainment items
• Blankets, sleeping bags, and tents

In terms of storing the items. It is recommended that you place the items in backpacks, so that everything is together and easily transported if needed. Keep the backpacks near an exit/entrance to your home to make it quick to grab and go, if necessary. Although, the food and water for 2-3 weeks can simply stay in your pantry or other area in the home deemed appropriate. Keep a 3-day supply of water and food in your backpacks for every member of your household, in the event you need to evacuate.