How to create emergency kits for your average workday

National Preparedness Month: How to Build Your Emergency Kit

How to create emergency kits for your average workday

Being prepared means being equipped with the proper supplies you may need in the event of an emergency or disaster

Disasters can happen anywhere, anytime—even in someone’s own home. September is National Preparedness Month and the American Red Cross is urging everyone to take three easy steps to get their household ready for emergencies.

These three action steps are as follows: Get a Kit, Make a Plan, Be Informed. In this story, we will give you all the details on how to build your emergency kit so you and your loved ones can react quickly when a disaster strikes.

BUILDING AN EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS KIT

Being prepared means being equipped with the proper supplies you may need in the event of an emergency or disaster. Keep your supplies in an easy-to-carry emergency preparedness kit that you can use at home or take with you in case you must evacuate. At a minimum, you should have the basic supplies listed below:

  1. Water: one gallon per person, per day (3-day supply for evacuation, 2-week supply for home)
  2. Food: non-perishable, easy-to-prepare items (3-day supply for evacuation, 2-week supply for home).
  3. Flashlight
  4. Battery-powered or hand-crank radio
  5. Extra batteries
  6. First aid kit
  7. Medications (7-day supply) and medical items
  8. Multi-purpose tool
  9. Sanitation and personal hygiene items
  10. Copies of personal documents (medication list and pertinent medical information, proof of address, deed/lease to home, passports, birth certificates, insurance policies)
  11. Cell phone with chargers
  12. Family and emergency contact information
  13. Extra cash
  14. Blankets
  15. Map(s) of the area

Consider the needs of all family members and add supplies to your kit:

  • Medical supplies (hearing aids with extra batteries, glasses, contact lenses, syringes, etc.)
  • Baby supplies (bottles, formula, baby food, diapers)
  • Games and activities for children
  • Pet supplies (collar, leash, ID, food, carrier, bowl)
  • Two-way radios
  • Extra set of car keys and house keys
  • Manual can opener

For more information on how to build your kit, visit this preparedness information on our web site.

How to create emergency kits for your average workday

Reviewed by personal safety expert Pete Canavan

You’ve seen the images on the news during natural disasters: grocery store shelves picked clean of bottled water and granola bars, with desperate people fighting over the last pack of batteries. It’s not a pretty picture, but since you’re reading an article on how to make an emergency kit, you’ve already taken the first step to avoid that scenario.

Assembling your emergency kit

How to create emergency kits for your average workday

Where to start

There are two questions to ask yourself before you start building your own emergency kit:

  1. Who is this kit for?
  2. What kinds of emergencies could affect me?

First, consider how many people (and animals) your survival kit will need to support and what their specific needs are. An emergency kit for a young, single adult will look different from an emergency kit for a family with little kids, or for an older couple.

Second, what kind of emergency are you expecting? If you live in California, an earthquake or wildfire is a possibility. If you live along a coastline, you may want to prepare for hurricanes or flooding.

Does the emergency typically require you to shelter in place (stay at home) or would you possibly need to evacuate? If you think there’s an evacuation possibility, you may want to consider creating a portable survival kit that you can easily throw in your car. If you already spend a lot of time on the road, or if you’re worried about an emergency while you’re at work, you may want smaller emergency kits just for your car or office.

If you have answers to these questions now, great. But it’s also okay if you don’t. Most big disasters have a few things in common, and you can’t go wrong by preparing for those. Read on to find out what they are and how to be ready for them.

As the coronavirus pandemic continues, now’s a good time to double-check your emergency kit. Make sure you have these supplies for this particular pandemic:

  • Cleaning supplies and disinfectants
  • Frozen, dry, and canned food
  • Refill of your regular prescription medications
  • First aid kit (including a thermometer)
  • Personal hygiene products like soap, hand sanitizer, feminine care products, laundry detergent
  • Paper products like toilet paper and tissues
  • Baby food and diapers
  • Pet food and other pet supplies
  • Cash and important documents

National Preparedness Month: How to Build Your Emergency Kit

How to create emergency kits for your average workday

Being prepared means being equipped with the proper supplies you may need in the event of an emergency or disaster

Disasters can happen anywhere, anytime—even in someone’s own home. September is National Preparedness Month and the American Red Cross is urging everyone to take three easy steps to get their household ready for emergencies.

These three action steps are as follows: Get a Kit, Make a Plan, Be Informed. In this story, we will give you all the details on how to build your emergency kit so you and your loved ones can react quickly when a disaster strikes.

BUILDING AN EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS KIT

Being prepared means being equipped with the proper supplies you may need in the event of an emergency or disaster. Keep your supplies in an easy-to-carry emergency preparedness kit that you can use at home or take with you in case you must evacuate. At a minimum, you should have the basic supplies listed below:

  1. Water: one gallon per person, per day (3-day supply for evacuation, 2-week supply for home)
  2. Food: non-perishable, easy-to-prepare items (3-day supply for evacuation, 2-week supply for home).
  3. Flashlight
  4. Battery-powered or hand-crank radio
  5. Extra batteries
  6. First aid kit
  7. Medications (7-day supply) and medical items
  8. Multi-purpose tool
  9. Sanitation and personal hygiene items
  10. Copies of personal documents (medication list and pertinent medical information, proof of address, deed/lease to home, passports, birth certificates, insurance policies)
  11. Cell phone with chargers
  12. Family and emergency contact information
  13. Extra cash
  14. Blankets
  15. Map(s) of the area

Consider the needs of all family members and add supplies to your kit:

  • Medical supplies (hearing aids with extra batteries, glasses, contact lenses, syringes, etc.)
  • Baby supplies (bottles, formula, baby food, diapers)
  • Games and activities for children
  • Pet supplies (collar, leash, ID, food, carrier, bowl)
  • Two-way radios
  • Extra set of car keys and house keys
  • Manual can opener

For more information on how to build your kit, visit this preparedness information on our web site.

Expect the best, but prepare for the worst. Create an emergency kit with everything you and your family need so you’re ready if disaster strikes.

The power is out and water is coming in through the basement window. Or maybe an outbreak hits and you’re quarantined at home for weeks. Natural disasters and unexpected emergencies can happen out of nowhere, and it’s important to always be prepared. Stocking an emergency kit with everything you need for a prolonged stay at home can help you feel calmer and more in control amid the chaos of a crisis. With a little planning and research, you can be sure you and your family will make it through any dangerous situation safely. Here’s what you need to include in an emergency kit for your home.

Survival Food and Water

Clean, drinkable water is a must in any emergency preparedness kit. Stock up on bottled water and store them in a cold, dark place in your home. Store at least one gallon of water per person per day for three days. Survival food is another thing to always keep on hand. Get non-perishable foods that are well-packaged to prevent insects, animals, or water from contaminating it. It’s important to think through foods that will cover many nutritional needs: protein, carbs, sodium, and sugar. The Department of Homeland Security recommends at least three days’ worth of food for each member of the household, including pets. You should also take note of any dietary restrictions.

Keep the following items in your emergency food supplies:

  • Ready-to-eat canned meats, fruits, vegetables and a can opener
  • Protein or fruit bars
  • Dry cereal or granola
  • Peanut butter
  • Dried fruit
  • Canned juices
  • Non-perishable pasteurized milk
  • High energy foods
  • Food for infants
  • Comfort/stress foods

Communication

Communication is key, especially in the frantic events of a disaster. In your disaster kit, always include a battery-powered or crank radio and an NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert. If the power is out and your cell phone is dead, you still have a way to know what is going on in your area. Throw in extra batteries for both.

It’s a good idea to throw an extra phone charger into your emergency supplies. If you still have cell service during a disaster, cell phones can be the best way to get in touch with friends and family in the area. In case there is a loss of power, choose a portable charger (at full charge) or a [PLA] [Shopping] – Categories – Non-Brand[Desktop]&utm_campaign=5BADL] [PLA] [Shopping] – Categories – Non-Brand[Desktop]&gclid=Cj0KCQjwpfHzBRCiARIsAHHzyZoVsCw-zc5AKuDJvIbxb0u9Ym7odIqES8fhNRXyYnu4lkB3dpSf4X4aAh_PEALw_wcB” title=”charging phone case” context=”body”] to be sure you have a way to recharge. A dead cell phone doesn’t do you any good.

When all else fails and you are in need of assistance, include a whistle in your emergency kit. Neighbors or rescuers will have an easier time finding you if you are trapped or cannot move if you have a whistle to signal for help.

Emergency First Aid Kits

First aid kits are easy to buy in stores or are easy to assemble yourself. Bandages, antibacterial ointment, an ice pack, and a thermometer are always good to have on hand in case of illness or injury. Gauze and tape are good for larger injuries. For sanitary reasons, also include hand sanitizer or sanitizing wipes, a CPR barrier, gloves, and a mouth-covering mask. Scissors and tweezers are also a good addition to a first aid kit. An emergency blanket is also advised.

Your personal medical needs may vary, and you need to make sure each family member has everything they need. Make an emergency contact list for each person in the house that they can put in their pocket or wallet during an emergency. Include prescription drugs, syringes, hearing aids, and contacts as needed. A seven-day supply of medications and medical items is recommended. Also, don’t forget hygiene products like toothbrushes, soap, and feminine products.

Survival Tools for Emergencies

In case of power outages, add a flashlight to your home emergency kit list (with extra batteries). Candles and matches can also help provide light, but won’t last in high winds or wet weather. Duct tape and plastic sheeting can help to temporarily repair leaks or cracks. Towels can help to soak up small amounts of flooding. A pair of work gloves will prevent cuts and splinters if you need to move fallen trees or branches.

Clean and dry blankets, sleeping bags, and warm clothes are good to add to your home emergency kit checklist. Staying in wet clothes can lead to hypothermia. If you have a backup generator, keep extra fuel with your emergency kit. Also, put a map of the area into your emergency survival kit.

Personal Items to Include in an Emergency Kit

It’s always smart to have copies of personal documents in a safe place in case of an emergency. Insurance cards, passports, birth certificates, and medical information should all be a part of the disaster kit. It’s also a good idea to include an extra set of car and house keys if you need to evacuate quickly. Credit cards won’t work in a widespread power outage, so include some cash, too.

Baby Clothes and Supplies

If you have an infant, also make sure to think through what they need, aside from clothes. Bottles are important for both water and formula. Throw in a few empty bottles and baby dishes. Most types of formula are non-perishable, making them a great addition to an emergency kit. Jarred baby food also has a long shelf life. Be sure to include diapers, wipes and extra clothes as well.

Pet Emergency Kit

Pets are a part of the family and have specific needs in an emergency as well. Pack food and medications your pet may need. Also include a leash, harness or kennel for each pet for easy transportation. As with your personal medical records, you should also include a copy of your pet’s medical records. Every pet should have a tracking chip or a collar with your information so you can find them if you get separated.

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  • Emergencies can happen at any time, so it’s imperative to have an at-home emergency kit ready should disaster strike.
  • According to the American Red Cross, everyone should consider creating a stationary and mobile emergency kit for the home.
  • We studied the Red Cross’s list of supplies and compiled the following list of basics to include in an at-home emergency kit.

When an emergency strikes, it’s almost always unexpected, whether it’s a fire, an earthquake, hurricane, a family member falling ill, losing power for multiple days, or something else. We don’t always immediately know what to do, but it’s wise to have the supplies readily available should you ever find yourself in the midst of an urgent situation.

Creating a personalized at-home emergency kit isn’t difficult if you know what to put it in. All you need to do is grab a large tub (like this one or this one) and fill it with basic necessities like a first aid kit, water, flashlight, and any medical supplies that are specific to your needs, or your family and pet’s needs. You could even create multiple bins based on the supplies inside (e.g., food bin, medical bin, hardware bin).

Popular Reviews

The American Red Cross suggests creating two kits: One that’s meant for use at home if you’re required to stay put, and an emergency kit that’s on-the-go ready should you need to mobilize.

How you choose to set up your at-home emergency kit is up to you, but we’ve rounded up a list of basic items you might want to include, based on the American Red Cross’s emergency preparedness website.

Here are 15 items to include in your at-home emergency kit:

A hand-crank/solar-powered NOAA radio and charging device

This multi-use radio, flashlight, and SOS alarm is a must-have emergency kit item. No matter the situation you might be in, this radio will work. It can be charged in four different ways, too: solar, hand crank, AAA batteries (3), and 2,000mAh power bank.

Not only does it provide access to AM/FM radio stations but it also features NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) emergency broadcasts. On top of that, the RunningSnail radio has a USB port for device charging.

A battery-free flashlight

No batteries are needed with this three-LED bulb flashlight that’s powered by solar energy and hand-crank technology. One minute of cranking will get you 10 minutes of light, so you’ll need to crank for six minutes for a full hour of power.

Additionally, the Stalwart flashlight has a built-in carabiner clip, so you can attach it to the outside of a backpack for easy access and solar-charging.

A set of weather-resistant blankets

These Mylar thermal blankets are designed to retain to up 90% of body heat and are waterproof, windproof, and moisture-proof. They can also be converted into emergency shelter tents if need be. Swiss Safe emergency blankets are also extremely lightweight, so they’re perfect for your mobile emergency kit.

A first aid kit

This first aid kit comes in a compact carrying bag with clear plastic pockets that will leave everything visible for quick and easy access. Supplies include several types of bandages, tapes, sponges, pads, sterilization wipes, gloves, and medical tools. You’ll be set with all of your basic medical needs in this compact kit.

by Luke Armstrong · Published 08/09/2018 · Updated 01/15/2020

When a disaster strikes, a quick and adequate response is your only chance to stay safe and recover in short order. To be able to react fast and effectively, however, you need to be well prepared – both at home and at work.

How to create emergency kits for your average workday

Proper preparation will help you protect lives and property in the event of a disaster.

If you’re a business owner, proper disaster preparedness takes on even more importance – you need to ensure not only your own safety and the safety of your employees, customers, and everyone else who happens to be in your company building when an emergency occurs, but also the continuity of your business and its future. A good business disaster plan will help you protect lives, equipment, and property, minimize financial loss, and expedite recovery.

Yet, even a well-thought business emergency preparedness plan won’t ensure your survival without proper supplies – you and your employees may be stranded at work for days until roads are cleared; electricity may be out for a long time causing water treatment plants to shut down; there may be bodily injuries requiring medical attention; etc. Therefore, business owners all over the country are urged to assemble office survival kits that contain all the emergency supplies needed to ensure the safety and well-being of everyone in the company in the event of a disaster.

Here are some guidelines for creating and maintaining a business preparedness kit that can help protect you and your staff in an emergency situation and allow you to resume normal operations as soon as possible after the disaster:

Prepare an Emergency Kit for Your Business

A business disaster kit should include emergency office supplies and equipment that will allow you and your employees to stay safe and well while waiting out the storm, give first aid to the injured, and receive timely updates and information about the situation at hand.

So, what to put in an office emergency kit? Here is a list of items to consider when creating a business preparedness kit:

    Bottled water – A minimum three-day supply of water for every member of your staff (one gallon of water per person per day). Running water will likely be unavailable or unsafe during and immediately after a disaster, so you need to have enough clean water for both drinking and sanitary purposes. It is a good idea to store some water purification tablets as well;

How to create emergency kits for your average workday

An office emergency kit should contain items and equipment that will ensure your and your employees’ safety and well-being while waiting out the storm at your workplace.

How to create emergency kits for your average workday

Keep copies of all key company documents with your emergency supplies.

Check and Update Your Business Emergency Preparedness Kit Regularly

When preparing an emergency kit for your business, keep in mind that it needs to be regularly updated in order to be useful when a disaster strikes. Ideally, your preparedness kit should be checked every six months to ensure the emergency equipment is properly functioning and the emergency supplies have not reached their expiration dates:

  1. Rotate food items and water supply twice a year, so that they stay fresh and healthy;
  2. Go through your first aid kit and replace medications approaching their expiration dates;
  3. Check if all required tools and protective supplies are in place and properly organized. Check batteries and replace them as necessary;

How to create emergency kits for your average workday

Stock on healthy foods and rotate them every six months.

Be sure to keep individual items in air-tight plastic bags and store your emergency supplies in sturdy, easy-to-carry containers that are both fire- and waterproof.

Good to remember: Keep your emergency preparedness kit in the safest place inside your company building where people will gather in the event of a disaster. Make sure you can quickly and easily retrieve it during an emergency evacuation.

Train Employees on Disaster Preparedness

Creating an emergency preparedness kit for your business will be of little use if your employees are not familiar with the company’s disaster response plan and can’t react in a timely and effective manner in the event of an emergency. You need to train your staff so that everyone knows what to do if a disaster strikes during business hours:

    Review your emergency preparedness plan with your employees every six months to remind them of the company safety procedures, emergency warning and communication systems, and evacuation plan. Make sure everyone knows where the safest places in the building and the emergency supplies are;

How to create emergency kits for your average workday

Make sure all your employees know what’s in your emergency preparedness kit, how to use every individual item, where the kit is kept, and how to access it.

One final piece of advice: Your preparedness plan will help you weather the storm, but you need to know what to do immediately after a disaster in order to expedite recovery and get your business back on track as soon as possible:

  1. Contact your business’s insurance provider immediately after the storm passes;
  2. Document the sustained damage and take measures to salvage as much of your property as you can;
  3. Call experienced storm damage repair specialists to restore your company building and return it to normal functioning. Using professional tornado and hurricane damage repair services will allow you to successfully reopen with a few short weeks after the disaster.

How to create emergency kits for your average workday

About Luke Armstrong

Expert in emergency fire and water restoration services, fire cleanup and water damage cleanup, mold removal, as well as carpet and upholstery cleaning services. Contributor to several restoration and cleaning blogs.

Picture this: A local emergency of some sort has emergency personnel knocking on your door telling you that you have 5 minutes to evacuate your house (fire, gas leak, railroad collision, earthquake). What will you grab in those 5 minutes? Hopefully, you’ll get your children and your 72-hour kit (and then whatever else you think you have time to grab and can carry).

The idea of creating kits that keep your family alive until help arrives, until you find support, or until you can return home, can seem daunting. It feels like there is so much to make sure you have, so much to do, so much to buy, and if you forget just one thing, you’re doomed.

Don’t think about it that way. Break it down into individual pieces. Most of the things you need you probably already have at home. The remaining things you’ll need are not expensive but are actually easy to get and easy to use. Think about it more like planning for a camping trip, but with much less stuff!

What Is a 72-Hour Emergency Kit and Why do YOU Need One?

What is a 72-hour kit? It is a kit (sometimes referred to as a Go Bag) in a backpack or tote that allows you to live away from your home for up to 3-4 days in an emergency. It is different from a Bug Out Bag (BOB) as a B.O.B. is meant for the possibility of permanently living away from home.

Your 72-hour kit is intended to allow you to escape an immediate threat, live for 3 (or 4 if you stretch it) days without relying on authorities or going back home (though sometimes, home won’t be an option if it is bad enough and that BOB will be a blessing).

Why might you need a Go-Bag or 72-hour kit? There are a number of reasons why you might be evacuated from your area.

You will probably return home eventually, but until you return, find a place to remain safe with your family, whether in a shelter or at a friend’s house, where you’ll have the means to keep your family hydrated, fed, and safe.

  • Scenario #1: Leaving Houston for the oncoming Hurricane Rita, many were stuck in the stand-still traffic on the highways going out of Houston. Some for a very long time.
  • Scenario #2: Wildfires happening in the Northwest and California had people evacuating their homes, sometimes with only minutes to spare, and having no place to go until they could find shelter with friends or family or in government shelters, depending on what was available (this is a real-life situation in California and the Northwest almost every year).
  • Scenario #3: There is an explosion in the area at a local factory. The fumes might be toxic, and they cannot predict whether more explosions will be coming or not. You’re asked to evacuate and make way to safer ground. But where is that? This is a real-life situation for those in the West – specifically Texas in 2013 and China, too.

What Kind of Container Do You Need?

You’ll see in the photo above that we’ve used a variety of containers for our 72-hour kit. The following will all do:

  • Backpack – with ample storage for everything
  • Rolling Suitcase – easy to transport in an emergency
  • Plastic Storage Tote – ideal to organize your belongings

We keep the plastic storage totes safe in our home, full of food and water, and rotate them out often. The backpacks serve as our Get Home Bags ” data-ldtx_powertrust=”0″ data-ldtx_trust=”0″ data-ldtx_power=”0″> Get Home Bags (the ones we travel with all the time) and are a portion of our 72-hour kit. We have a suitcase for family clothes and blankets. We keep a camping kit handy with two 2-person tents and some supplies in another tote not seen in this photo.

You can easily transfer the items if needed, but they’re created for quick and easy storage, gathering, and use for us if we need to leave. We understand that if we had to trek for many miles, we wouldn’t be able to drag those plastic totes, but we’d do some quick rearranging and make things work better for the situation at hand. We also keep a first aid kit (the bottom-most tote) handy.

Tip: To go along with your 72-Hour Emergency Kit, it’s important to already have an escape plan ready if you do need to get away from the house quickly. Don’t wait until the last minute to make decisions about where you’ll go because you don’t always have the best decision-making skills in the moment of panic.

*Don’t miss the 30 Days of Preparedness Linkup at the bottom of the post!

There are many more ways to be prepared!*

What to Have in Your 72-Hour Emergency Kit

Below is a list of necessary items to include in your 72-hour kit in the event of an emergency situation. Be sure to store them in an easily accessible spot (we keep ours in the car along with our emergency car kit).

The preparedness mindset is “one is none” (meaning you have no backup) and “two is one” (meaning once you use your extra, you only have that one left). The idea behind this kit is that you have what you need to get through a short-term crisis before you can return home or until you can find shelter and/or help. You don’t need to take your kitchen sink, but where you can, have a backup or a plan if something fails or gets lost.

WATER

FEMA recommends 1 gallon of water per person per day, but that is a bare minimum. You’ll want more for sanitation, first aid, and more. Be prepared with water filtration systems, water purification tablets, water bottles, and more for water gathered on the road.

Here are some items you might find useful:

  • Water Bottles – Pre-filled with water so you’re always ready
  • Water Pouches – A great storage idea to fit in your backpack

A good driver is always prepared. Breakdowns can happen anytime, anywhere. In addition to having the necessary equipment handy to change a flat tire, there are some other items you should always have on hand. Here we’ll teach you how to pack a roadside emergency kit to keep you safe.

Homemade vs. Pre-made Emergency Kits

Pre-packaged car emergency kits can be a great place to start. But putting your own roadside assistance kit together has some valuable benefits.

  • Tailor it to the weather in your area. Maybe you’ll never need an ice scraper, or a battery-powered fan. Add or subtract items from the list that you know you’ll need where you’re traveling.
  • Include items that suit your family. If you have kids or pets, you can add things like diapers, dehydrated food, dog treats, or a water bowl.
  • Create multiple kits or have back-ups handy. Instead of buying several pre-made kits, you can build multiple car safety kits at once or keep extra supplies on hand if you run out.

The biggest benefit of creating your own vehicle emergency kit? You’ll know exactly what’s inside. You bought it and packed it, so you’ll know what is and isn’t included.

What to Pack in Your Emergency Kit

Here are the emergency kit essentials we recommend along with some optional items you can leave out it they’re not appropriate for your area.

  • First Aid kit. Some of the items to include are:
    • Band-Aids
    • Hand sanitizer.
    • Antiseptic.
    • Antibiotic ointment.
    • Bug spray.
    • Aspirin (or similar).
    • Cotton balls.
    • Gauze pads.
    • Tweezers.
    • Bandana.
    • Ace bandage.
  • Fire extinguisher.
    • Choose a small one that is easy to store.
  • Road flares (if not already in your tire-changing tools).
  • Jumper cables.
  • Rain ponchos.
  • Tarp.
  • Flashlight and extra batteries.
  • Rags.
  • Duct tape
  • Scent-free baby wipes.
  • Drinking water and non-perishable snacks.
  • Multipurpose tool.

Some optional items for your roadside kit include:

  • Collapsible shuttle.
  • Ice scraper.
  • Cat litter for slick roads.
  • Small battery-powered fan.
  • Blankets and/or warm clothing.

Some recommend keeping fluids like oil, antifreeze, and brake fluid in your vehicle as well. If you have an older car, add these to your kit—but if you regularly check your fluids, you shouldn’t need these.

Remember, this list is in addition to what you already have on hand for changing a tire. Store all of your roadside emergency items in one complete package.

How to Pack Your Emergency Kit

When you have all of your items ready, we suggest the following method for creating a well-organized and easy to use emergency kit:

  • Use a clear, plastic container with a secure lid.
  • Place items inside in a tidy manner, preferably a single layer so they are easy to see and grab.
  • Create an itemized list and tape it to the outside of the box.
  • Be sure to replace anything that expires or gets used up.

The best place to keep your emergency kit is in your trunk. If you have a truck or hatchback, consider using bungee cords to secure it in the back of your vehicle so it doesn’t slide around and open while you’re driving.

If you have limited space in your vehicle, reduce your kit to just the basics:

  • First Aid kit.
  • Flashlight.
  • Multipurpose tool.
  • Jumper cables.
  • Road flares.
  • Bottled water.

Additional Emergency Safety Tips

In addition to your emergency kit, there are a few things you might not realize can be a real sanity saver.

  • Cell phone car charger: Keeping your phone charged up when you’re on the road can help you reach out for assistance in an emergency. In addition to a standard car charger, also consider a solar charger.
  • Cash for gas: If the power goes out due to inclement weather, it’s nearly impossible to get gas with just your credit card. Cash always works, so keep some safely tucked away in your car.
  • Clean, empty, refillable gas jug: This won’t fit in your every-day emergency kit, but In addition to a standard car charger, also consider a solar charger. Just remember it’s never safe to keep a full jug in your vehicle, as gas is highly flammable and unstable.
  • Full fluids: Before any road trip, be sure to check all the fluid, including oil, antifreeze, and transmission fluid. These should be clean and full to make sure your vehicle is running in tip-top shape.
  • Deck of cards, book, or other entertainment: Let’s face it—if you find yourself in an emergency, you might be waiting a while for help. Counting the number of red cars can get old fast, so be sure you have something to occupy the time.

How to create emergency kits for your average workday

Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are counseled to have a food storage and be prepared for an emergency which includes having a 72-hour kit. This kit should be put together in a practical manner so that you can carry it with you if you ever need to evacuate your home. It is also important to prepare one for each member of your family who is able to carry one.

Below is a list of items to store in a 72-hour kit to help you be prepared in the case of an emergency. You can also learn how to make a first aid kit to put into your 72-hour kit.

Directions: Print the list below and check off each item that has been put into your 72-hour kit.

Checklist: 72-Hour Kit (pdf)

Food and Water

(A three-day supply of food and water, per person, when no refrigeration or cooking is available)

  • Protein/granola bars
  • Trail mix/dried fruit
  • Crackers/cereals (for munching)
  • Canned tuna, beans, turkey, beef, Vienna sausages, etc. (“pop-top” cans that open without a can-opener are most convenient)
  • Canned juice
  • Candy/gum (warning: Jolly Ranchers can melt and using mint gum might make everything taste like mint.)
  • Water (1 gallon/4 liters per person)

Bedding and Clothing

  • Change of clothing (short and long sleeved shirts, pants, jackets, socks, etc.)
  • Undergarments
  • Raincoat/poncho
  • Blankets and emergency heat blankets (that keep in warmth)
  • Cloth sheet
  • Plastic sheet

Fuel and Light

  • Battery lighting (flashlights, lamps, etc.)
  • Extra batteries
  • Flares
  • Candles
  • Lighter
  • Waterproof matches

Equipment

  • Can opener
  • Dishes/utensils
  • Shovel
  • Radio (with batteries!)
  • Pen and paper
  • Ax
  • Pocket knife
  • Rope
  • Duct tape

Personal Supplies and Medication

  • First aid kit and supplies
  • Toiletries (roll of toilet paper — remove the center tube to easily flatten into a zip-lock bag, feminine hygiene, folding brush, etc.)
  • Cleaning supplies (mini hand sanitizer, soap, shampoo, dish soap, etc. Warning: Scented soap might “flavor” food items.)
  • Immunizations up-to-date
  • Medication (acetaminophen, ibuprofen, children’s medication etc.)
  • Prescription medication (at least 3 days’ worth)

Personal Documents and Money

(Place these items in a water-proof container!)