The U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Ready Campaign has outlined the top 10 items for a basic emergency supply kit: water, food, a radio, a flashlight, a first-aid kit, a whistle, moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties, a wrench or pliers, local maps and personal items. More information is available at
-- Linda Shepard, Rochester Post, April 10, 2008, p. 17A

In your home emergency supplies, you may be able to keep more things and rely on other items around the home. Keep in mind that you may also need a plan for "grab and go" in case of an emergency evacuation. For an evacuation you need to also consider portability and "irreplaceable" items. You can reduce the number of items you consider irreplaceable by keeping copies in another place. For instance, a copy of important medical or legal records may be kept in a safe deposit box, by a relative or friend living at a distance, a lawyer's office or other location. Copies of important pictures can be digitized and kept on a small drive with an evacuation kit.

Supply checklistEdit

Consider including the following in your emergency supply kit:

  • water (enough for 3 days)
  • food (ready to eat, won't spoil, enough for 3 days)
  • radio (battery powered)
  • flashlight
  • extra batteries for the radio and flashlight (another option is the new, wind-up appliances)
  • first-aid kit
    • aspirin, other painkillers
    • sprain, wrap bandages
    • 4" square bandages and tape
    • antibiotic cream
    • soap
    • other??
  • whistle or air horn
  • moist towelettes
  • garbage bags and plastic ties
  • wrench or pliers
  • local maps
  • at least one change of clothes per person
  • at least one blanket or sleeping bag per person (consider including an emergency "space" blanket too)
  • key family documents in water proof container (might want to have extra copies in a ziploc bag with the emergency supplies)

Also include something to provide comfort, like a stuffed animal for a child or a game for amusement, especially during a bad weather season, when you might be in the basement or shelter for awhile.

Special needsEdit

Are there any special things that people in the home will need?

  • diapers for infants
  • prescription medicines
    especially any medication that might be needed during a stressful event, like an asthma inhaler or heart medication

Other things to have handyEdit

  • phone numbers


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