Family Disaster Supplies Kit
happen anytime and anywhere. And when disaster strikes, you may not have much to
A highway spill of hazardous material could mean instant evacuation.
winter storm could confine your family at home.
earthquake, flood, tornado or any other disaster could cut off basic services
- gas, water, electricity and telephones - for days.
disaster, local officials and relief workers will be on the scene, but they
cannot reach everyone immediately. You could get help in hours, or it may take
days. Would your family be prepared to cope with the emergency until help
family will cope best by preparing for disaster before it strikes. One way to
prepare is by assembling a Disaster Supplies Kit. Once disaster hits, you
won't have time to shop or search for supplies. But if you've gathered
supplies in advance, your family can endure an evacuation or home confinement.
prepare your kit
- Review the checklists in this document.
- Gather the supplies that are listed. You may need them if
your family is confined at home.
- Place the supplies you'd most likely need for an
evacuation in an easy-to-carry container. These supplies are listed with an
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There are six basics you should stock in your home: water, food, first
aid supplies, clothing and bedding, tools and emergency supplies and special
items. Keep the items that you would most likely need during an
evacuation in an easy-to-carry container--suggested items are marked with an
asterisk(*). Possible containers include
large, covered trash container;
a duffle bag.
Store water in plastic containers such as soft drink
bottles. Avoid using containers that will decompose or break, such as milk
cartons or glass bottles. A normally active person needs to drink at least two
quarts of water each day. Hot environments and intense physical activity can
double that amount. Children, nursing mothers and ill people will need more.
- Store one gallon of water per person per day (two quarts
for drinking, two quarts for food preparation/sanitation)*
- Keep at least a three-day supply of water for each person
in your household.
at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food. Select foods that require
no refrigeration, preparation or cooking and little or no water. If you must
heat food, pack a can of sterno. Select food items that are compact and
*Include a selection of the
following foods in your Disaster Supplies Kit:
- Ready-to-eat canned meats, fruits and vegetables
- Canned juices, milk, soup (if powdered, store extra
- Staples--sugar, salt, pepper
- High energy foods--peanut butter, jelly, crackers,
granola bars, trail mix
- Foods for infants, elderly persons or persons on special
- Comfort/stress foods--cookies, hard candy, sweetened
cereals, lollipops, instant coffee, tea bags
First Aid Kit
a first aid kit for your home and one for each car. A first aid kit* should
- Sterile adhesive bandages in assorted sizes
- 2-inch sterile gauze pads (4-6)
- 4-inch sterile gauze pads (4-6)
- Hypoallergenic adhesive tape
- Triangular bandages (3)
- 2-inch sterile roller bandages (3 rolls)
- 3-inch sterile roller bandages (3 rolls)
- Moistened towelettes
- Tongue blades (2)
- Tube of petroleum jelly or other lubricant
- Assorted sizes of safety pins
- Cleansing agent/soap
- Latex gloves (2 pair)
- Aspirin or nonaspirin pain reliever
- Anti-diarrhea medication
- Antacid (for stomach upset)
- Syrup of Ipecac (use to induce vomiting if advised by the
Poison Control Center)
- Activated charcoal (use if advised by the Poison Control
Contact your local American Red Cross chapter to
obtain a basic first aid manual.
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|SUGGESTIONS AND REMINDERS|
- Store your kit in a convenient place known to all family members. Keep a
smaller version of the Disaster Supplies Kit in the trunk of your car.
- Keep items in air-tight plastic bags.
- Change your stored water supply every six months so it stays fresh.
- Rotate your stored food every six months.
- Re-think your kit and family needs at least once a year. Replace
batteries, update clothes, etc.
- Ask your physician or pharmacist about storing prescription medications.
- Mess kits, or paper cups, plates and plastic utensils*
- Emergency preparedness manual*
- Battery-operated radio and extra batteries*
- Flashlight and extra batteries*
- Cash or traveler's checks, change*
- Nonelectric can opener, utility knife*
- Fire extinguisher: small canister, ABC type
- Tube tent
- Matches in a waterproof container
- Aluminum foil
- Plastic storage containers
- Signal flare
- Paper, pencil
- Needles, thread
- Medicine dropper
- Shut-off wrench, to turn off household gas and water
- Plastic sheeting
- Map of the area (for locating shelters)
- Toilet paper, towelettes*
- Soap, liquid detergent*
- Feminine supplies*
- Personal hygiene items*
- Plastic garbage bags, ties (for personal sanitation uses)
- Plastic bucket with tight lid
- Household chlorine bleach
- Clothing and Bedding
*Include at least one complete change of clothing and
footwear per person.
- Sturdy shoes or work boots*
- Hat and gloves
- Rain gear*
- Thermal underwear
- Blankets or sleeping bags*
family members with special needs, such as infants and elderly or disabled
- Powdered milk
- Heart and high blood pressure medication
- Prescription drugs
- Denture needs
- Contact lenses and supplies
- Extra eye glasses
Entertainment--games and books.
Keep these records
in a waterproof, portable container.
- Will, insurance policies, contracts, deeds, stocks and
- Passports, social security cards, immunization records
- Bank account numbers
- Credit card account numbers and companies
- Inventory of valuable household goods, important
- Family records (birth, marriage, death certificates)
CREATE A FAMILY
|To get started...
Contact your local emergency management or
civil defense office and your local American Red Cross chapter.
- Find out which disasters are most likely to happen in
- Ask how you would be warned.
- Find out how to prepare for each.
Meet with your family.
- Discuss the types of disasters that could occur.
- Explain how to prepare and respond.
- Discuss what to do if advised to evacuate.
- Practice what you have discussed.
how your family will stay in contact if separated by disaster.
- Pick two meeting places:
1) a location a safe
distance from your home in case of fire.
2) a place outside your
neighborhood in case you can't return home.
- Choose an out-of-state friend as a "check-in contact"
for everyone to call.
Complete these steps.
- Post emergency telephone numbers by every phone.
- Show responsible family members how and when to shut off
water, gas and electricity at main switches.
- Install a smoke detector on each level of your home,
especially near bedrooms; test monthly and change the batteries two times
- Contact your local fire department to learn about home
- Learn first aid and CPR. Contact your local American Red
Cross chapter for information and training.
Meet with your neighbors.
how the neighborhood could work together after a disaster. Know your
neighbors' skills (medical, technical). Consider how you could help neighbors
who have special needs, such as elderly or disabled persons. Make plans for
child care in case parents can't get home.
practice and maintain your plan.
The Federal Emergency
Management Agency's Community and Family Preparedness Program and the American
Red Cross Disaster Education Program are nationwide efforts to help people
prepare for disasters of all types. For more information, please contact your
local or State Office of Emergency Management, and your local American Red
Cross chapter. Ask for "Your Family Disaster Plan" and the "Emergency
Or write to:
Washington, D.C. 20024