Emergency Disaster KitsAre You Ready For A Natural Disaster?

Planning ahead for natural disasters is easy when you use the emergency preparedness information presented here on how to prepare an emergency disaster supply kit.

The American Red Cross recommends that everyone prepare an emergency supply kit in case of severe weather, tornado warning, tropical storm, hurricanes or other natural disaster.

While some emergency supplies may seem obvious, there are other items that you may consider including.

Featured Image:  Example of An Emergency Kit, KOMU News on Flickr, Commons 2.0

Be Prepared for an Emergency

Emergency management offices and web sites can inform you what types of natural disasters apply to the area in which you live. Severe weather is of course the most common, but fires, floods and earthquakes should be considered as well. Natural disasters vary from region to region, but emergency preparedness doesn’t. Your local emergency management officials can tell you what types of natural disasters you should prepare for.

An important component of emergency preparedness is an emergency disaster supply kit. These emergency supplies will be needed in the case of lost power, evacuation orders, etc. Luckily, emergency disaster supply kits are scalable and adaptable since you assemble the contents yourself. Here are basic recommendations for supplies to include in your family’s emergency supply kits, along with some additional items recommended for safety or comfort.

Ready America 70385 Deluxe Emergency Kit 4 Person BackpackGrab N Go Backpacks

Ready America Deluxe Emergency Kit 4 Person Backpack

Grab N Go Backpacks are a handy way to start an emergency disaster preparation program for your home and family.

If you don’t have anything at all, one of these kits will get you started. Emergency staff and first responders always say we should keep an emergency supply kit with supplies for at least 3 days (72 hours).

This 4 person emergency supply kit is US Coast Guard approved and contains enough supplies for 3 days. The kit has food, water, Duct Tape, a Multi-Function Pocket Tool, and a 4-function, hand-crank Emergency Power Station.

The Power Station produces either 30 minutes of bright light, 2 minutes of talk time on a cell phone, or 15 minutes of radio from one minute of cranking.

Here are more examples of emergency disaster supply kits that are available. Click through and see what items are available in each of them because they can be very different. Emergency backpacks like these are huge time savers if you don’t want to hunt for all the items you want to include in your own emergency supply kit.

Grab-‘n-Go Double Backpack Emergency Survival Kit – 4-Person / 72-HourAmerican Preparedness 4 Person Starter Emergency Preparedness Kit with Rolling BackpackReady America 70280 Emergency Kit, 2-Person, 3-Day BackpackGrab-‘n-Go Survival Essentials Backpack – 2-Person / 72-HourLife Gear Emergency Survival Kit & Yellow Backpack – 1 person, 3 dayReady America 70080 Emergency Kit, 1-Person 3-Day BagLife Gear LG335 Safety Day-Pack with First Aid Kit, Black

Basic Emergency Disaster Supplies To Include In A Supply Kit

These basic emergency supplies will be helpful during or after a natural disaster.

  • One gallon of water for each person per day for drinking and sanitation. Store this water in sealed, unbreakable containers. Mark the date stored on the bottles. I use two liter soda or gallon milk bottles, thoroughly washed. At the beginning of hurricane season, I freeze as many as I can & leave them in the freezer. At the end of hurricane season, I use the water in my garden and recycle the bottles. I start the process again the following year.
  • Three to five days worth of non-perishable packaged or canned food. Don’t forget a non-electric can opener!
  • Extra clothes and shoes, for at least 3 days (or more if desired).
  • Rain gear.
  • Blankets, some pillows and sleeping bags.
  • A first aid kit
  • A battery powered portable television or radio capable of receiving weather broadcasts. Pack extra batteries as well.
  • Flashlights, with extra batteries
  • Toilet paper (!)
  • Matches in a waterproof container

Let’s Make a Survival Kit

Don’t Forget Special Needs Disaster Supplies

Depending on your family’s special needs, you may wish to include some or all of the following emergency supplies in your emergency disaster supply kit. Many of these items can be packed in one common duffel bag. Keep all medications away from children. Toys and game for children, with a couple of snacks can be packed in a child’s backpack for them to have handy.

  • Feminine hygiene products
  • Prescription Medications
  • Extra glasses
  • Hearing aid/s and extra batteries
  • Toys and games for children; books or magazines for adults
  • Baby formula, baby food, diapers, pacifiers and extra clothes for infants
  • Pet Carriers, leashes, food and water and shot records for pets
  • A good map that includes detailed information for county roads and highways
  • Booster cables, an air pump, a tire repair kit and flares for the vehicle you use to evacuate

Emergency Preparedness Documents For Your Disaster Supplies Kit

The American Red Cross and other emergency management staff may need to see documents in order to provide assistance depending on where you go and what you need.

Local shelter officials might ask to see proof of residence. If you need medical assistance and you are outside your home area, you may need to provide copies of your health insurance policy information anyway for verification.

  • Copies of important documents, such as birth/marriage certificates, credit cards, drivers licenses
  • A list of your family physicians, a list of your prescription medications, copies of health insurance documents, model and serial numbers of medical devices like pacemakers.
  • Copies of the deed to your home or the lease, home/fire/flood/wind insurance documents, household inventory and a recent utility bill
  • List of family phone numbers and addresses outside the disaster area

Five Star Zipper Binder Plus Multi Access File, 2-Inch Capacity, Black Avery Top Loading Clear Sheet Protectors, Heavyweight, 250 per Box Grab N Go Essential Document Organizer: The Ultimate Guide to Gathering Emergency Contacts, Family Information, Personal and Financial Records, and Other Vital Documents

How to Make an Emergency Kit

For More About Disaster Emergency Kits

For more information about how to prepare an emergency survival kit, check these links:

American Red Cross | Disaster Relief, CPR Certification, Donate Blood

Basic Disaster Supplies Kit | Ready.gov

A Natural Disaster Doesn’t Have To Be A Disaster For You & Your Family

Before a natural disaster strikes, begin your emergency disaster supplies kit. Emergency preparedness measures can protect your family and provide comfort in severe weather, a tornado warning or approaching hurricane.

The American Red Cross responds to natural disasters quickly and efficiently. If you have prepared for your family’s needs, then the resources available from the American Red Cross will help more people in need.

Emergency management officials in your area will keep you informed, especially of evacuation orders. Know who your local emergency management officials are and how to communicate with them. You, however, are the front line of emergency management for your family.


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Are You Ready For A Natural Disaster? Planning ahead for natural disasters is easy when you use the emergency preparedness information presented here on how to prepare an emergency disaster supply kit. The American Red Cross recommends that everyone prepare an emergency supply kit in case of severe weather, tornado warning,...