Start preparing the house for unplanned survival challenges by creating earthquake emergency kits or a 72 hour survival kit containing the most important items necessary for survival. Store them somewhere readily available and accessible at a moment’s notice. Prepare individual emergency survival kits for each family member including pets. Designate a closet or a section of the garage or basement for general survival supplies pertaining to the house.
Critical items needed in emergency survival kits are food, water, sanitary supplies and medicines. Pave a backpack or small carry-on rolling suitcase for each individual in the family and a special case for the pets. Include items unique to each person’s needs. For instance, diapers and wipes, baby bottles and powdered formula for an infant; hearing aids and dentures for an elderly person; a special toy or book for kids; medications, eye glasses and any personal care products necessary for each person’s particular needs.
Household emergency preparedness kits need items like tents, portable toilets, tools and bulk water storage. Examine the following suggestions for ideas to help create earthquake emergency kits or general 72 hour survival kits.
Packing Individual Disaster Survival Kits
The individual emergency preparedness kits should be put together in a backpack if possible for those who can carry one. Be decisive when packing including only the most important disaster survival items for each family member. Keep sizes of toiletries small and pack in resealable plastic baggies. To each disaster survival kit add the following:
- Hat and gloves
- Socks and underwear
- Full change of clothes and shoes
- Sweatshirt or sweater
- Rain poncho
- Hair brush
- Bug spray and sunscreen available in individual packets
- Camping towel and soap
- Zip baggies in two sizes
- A roll of toilet paper with the cardboard inner roll removed
- Baggie with bandaids, cotton swabs and a tube of first aid ointment
In addition to general clothing and toiletries, include personal care items unique to each individual like extra eye glasses and eye glass prescriptions as well as any medications.
Other necessary items to pack in earthquake emergency kits include:
- Pen and small note pad
- Money in small bills and change
- Travel sized flashlight
- Length of nylon rope
- Safety pins
- Wind-proof matches
- Hand and foot warmers
- Emergency blanket
- Multi tool with a knife
- Travel sized roll of duct tape
- Water bottle with water purification tablets
- High calorie, emergency food bars that will last for at least 3-5 days
One family member’s pack should be stocked with a camping saw, a collapsible shovel, several flares and a traveling first aid kit. Each person needs a sleeping bag.
General Disaster Supplies and Earthquake Emergency Kits for the House
If leaving the house quickly is necessary, throw the disaster survival kits and sleeping bags in the trunk of the car. Keep extra family supplies at the house in addition to the emergency kits. Store extra water in 55 gallon drums or in clean soda bottles or other long term containers. Preserve water with household bleach,16 drops (1/4 tsp.) to each gallon. Make sure food storage is placed somewhere that is not too hot to prevent spoilage.
- Store beans, rice and other dry goods in sealed plastic 5 gallon containers.
- Set aside matches, kindling, candles and extra flashlights and batteries.
- If there’s a fireplace in the house, keep extra wood stored with kindling in the event of an earthquake or other natural disaster.
- Keep a full sized first aid kit and booklet at the house in plain view. Remember the extra sleeping bag or extra blankets and a camping mat as part of overall earthquake emergency kits.
Quick Car Get-away Emergency Survival Kits
Pack emergency disaster kits so they can easily be tossed in the car for a quick get-away. When storing general household survival kits, do so in plastic containers and place them in the trunk of the car beforehand to be sure they fit.
Include the following items in a special box to be included in the car if a quick escape is necessary.
- 3 gallons of water for each person or pet
- 3 days food per person (6,000 calorie food bars are best)
- Plastic utensils, paper plates (washing uses precious water stores)
- Hand-held can opener
- Sharp knife and small cutting board
- Foil or plastic wrap
- Dust masks
- Dish soap
- Towlettes, hand sanitizer
- Chlorine bleach
Remember to also add emergency communications and lighting supplies to the earthquake disaster kit for the car.
- Emergency, hand-crank radio not needing batteries
- Whistle for each person
- Hand-held two way radios, extra batteries
- Flashlights for each person and extra batteries
- Camping lantern with florescent bulbs.
Being prepared ahead of time with earthquake emergency kits for all family members provides a degree of calm in the event of any emergency which is reassuring when the world seems to turn upside. down.