You may need to survive on your own after a disaster. Basic services such as electricity, gas, water, sewage treatment, and telephones may be cut off for days, or even weeks. A Disaster Supply Kit for your home is a collection of basic items that members of a household may need in the event of a disaster.
6 Basics for Your Disaster Supply Kit include:
- First aid kit
- Portable, battery-operated radio or television and extra batteries
- Flashlight and extra batteries
- Manual can opener
Foods For Your Supply Kit
- Ready-to-eat canned meats, fruits and vegetables
- Canned juices and powdered milk
- Sugar, salt, pepper
- High energy foods–peanut butter, granola bars, trail mix
- Foods for persons with special dietary needs
Special Items for Babies
- Powdered milk
Special Items for Adults
- Prescription drugs
- Heart and high blood pressure medication
- Denture needs
- Contact lenses and supplies
- Extra eye glasses
- Hearing aid batteries
- Toilet paper
- Soap, liquid detergent
- Feminine supplies
- Personal hygiene items
- Plastic garbage bags, ties (for personal sanitation uses)
- Plastic bucket with tight lid
- Household chlorine bleach
Tools for Supply Kit
- Paper cups & plates and plastic utensils
- Cash, including some change
- Fire extinguisher
- Matches in a waterproof container
- Plastic storage containers
- Signal flare
- Shut-off wrench, to turn off household gas and water
- Plastic sheeting
Important Family Documents
Keep these records in a waterproof, portable container.
- Will, insurance policies, contracts, deeds, stocks and bonds
- Photo IDs, passports, social security cards, immunization records
- Bank account numbers
- Credit card account numbers and companies
- Inventory of valuable household goods, important telephone numbers
- Family records (birth, marriage, death certificates)
- Photocopies of credit and identification cards
Disaster Supply Kit Maintenance
Just as important as putting your supplies together is maintaining them so they are safe to use when needed. Here are some tips to keep your supplies ready and in good condition:
- Keep canned foods in a dry place where the temperature is cool.
- Store boxed food in tightly closed plastic or metal containers to protect from pests and to extend its shelf life.
- Throw out any canned good that becomes swollen, dented, or corroded.
- Use foods before they go bad, and replace them with fresh supplies.
- Place new items at the back of the storage area and older ones in the front.
- Change stored food and water supplies every six months. Be sure to write the date you store it on all containers.
- Re-think your needs every year and update your kit as your family needs change.
- Keep items in airtight plastic bags and put your entire disaster supplies kit in one or two easy-to-carry containers, such as an unused trashcan, camping backpack, or duffel bag.