I know there are many sites on the internet to help with disaster planning, but I also know that many people don’t take advantage of them. I was raised by parents who believed in being ready for ANY disaster. I practice what they preached and have gone on to do corporate disaster planning and business continuity work as well as helping with my community disaster plan. I hope that my input might help someone start their planning or become more organized with their current plan. You may know most of the info I provide, but there may be one thing you pick up that could help in the future. I am always open to suggestions and new ideas so if you have something you'd like to share let me know! :o)
I hope to focus on at least one area of emergency preparedness each month. Look for upcoming information regarding important document preparation, family disaster planning, creating your food storage, community disaster planning, and automobile preparedness kits. I will also have monthly challenge ideas you can do to help increase your knowledge and preparation.
Learn how to turn off your water, gas and electricity
Teach your children about 911
72 HOUR KITS:
Preparing a 72 Hour Kit can be a daunting and expensive task. Many people do not have adequate emergency supplies and I’d like to share some of the information I have used to make it a little easier to prepare your kit.
A 72 Hour Kit can be created by adding necessary items every month. You won’t be 100% prepared right away, but you will be on your way! To start with, decide which type of bag or pack you would like to use. Backpacks are simple and easy to grab and go. Or you can use large 5 gallon plastic buckets. These are very sturdy and waterproof but it can be a burden to carry more than one. Perhaps a duffle bag will work for you. Decide which will work best for your situation and family size. Depending upon size and how you pack, a backpack or 5 gallon bucket should hold enough supplies for 2-4 individuals. I personally prefer Ogio backpacks. They are not as large as some of the larger internal frame hiking packs, but Ogio Three 6 and Patrol models have numerous storage pockets, straps systems, tool organizer pockets and they are extremely durable and hydration ready. You can also find great packs at any Army Navy surplus store. If you are packing for more than 2 people, I do recommend more than one pack. Once you have your bags, you are ready to fill them. **Remember to check your packs, expirations dates, change batteries and clothing sizes twice a year. Daylight savings time change in April and October is a great time to do this.**
The following list is broken up into items to add each month to your 72 Hour Kit. If you are able, doubling up some months will have your kit ready sooner! Please remember these are basic supplies. I will include some other optional items at the end of this list. When calculating food and water, plan for a 3 day supply per person when no refrigeration or cooking is available. How much you pack will depend on the number of people you are packing for.
Water (1 gallon per person)
Protein and/or granola bars
Trail mix and dried fruit
Canned protein; tuna, beans, chicken, Spam, beef jerky, etc. (pop top cans are best)
(if available, MRE’s are excellent to keep in your 72 Hour Kit in place of recommended food items)
Crackers and/or cereal bars
Canned juice or drink mix
Other food as desired; instant coffee, tea, etc.
Dishes and utensils (paper, plastic or mess kits)
Radio with batteries
Multi-function pocket knife (like a Leatherman)
Flashlights and batteries
Candles, waterproof matches and lighter
Cleaning supplies; hand sanitizer, soap, shampoo, dish soap, wet wipes, feminine hygiene, etc.
Notepad and pens
Toiletries; toilet paper, hair brush, toothbrushes, tooth paste, etc.
First Aid supplies;
Water purification tablets
Elastic bandages (2-3)
Splints (2-3 different ones)
Gauze pads and medical tape
Medical gloves (several pair)
Emergency medical guide
Ponchos (one per person)
Axe and/or tree saw
Medications; Acetaminophen, Ibuprofen, children’s meds if needed
Infant needs if applicable (diapers, formula, baby food, powder, etc.)
Flares and/or 12 hour light sticks
MONEY – no less than $100 plus a roll of quarters
One item not covered in the above list is clothing. One change of clothing should be packed per person and include short and long sleeve shirts, a jacket, pants, underwear, socks and sturdy shoes. If you have children old enough to carry a backpack, I would recommend a smaller lightweight pack for each child to include their change of clothes, towel and washcloth, age appropriate activities like books, coloring books, crayons, etc. Be sure to also pack for your pets! In addition to food, water and pet meds, you may need things like a leash, chain, crate, and feeding bowls.
Five gallon plastic buckets are great for carrying optional items. The bucket can also be used for extra seating or to create a latrine, if needed.
Camp stove w/ fuel
Camping lantern w/ fuel
Spiritual items; Bible, Koran, etc.
Leather work gloves
Cooking pot and/or dutch oven
Camp stool or chair
Battery powered fan
Fire starter kit
Tarps 12x12 (2)
Fuel siphon hose
All sizes Ziploc bags
Jumbo permanent marker
Basic tool kit
The whole family! With 7 kids the house is always a disaster area!