Take a look around you — what do you need every day? What kind of things do you rely on? What are the luxuries? If there’s something you can’t live without, it’s probably a good idea to have extra.
ASSESS YOUR SITUATION
Different people have different needs, but there are a few things everyone should keep in mind. Living day-to-day might seem like the frugal thing to do, but it’s not really practical when unforeseen circumstances arise. A small area in the basement with an extra week’s worth of nonperishable food and bottled water will give you something to subsist upon while help is on its way.
But every family is different. Consider yours. Do you have small children? If you have an infant, an extra stockpile of formula, diapers, bottles, powder and over-the-counter medication might be good to have.
Do any of your family members have disabilities that might impede their ability to get to safety in an emergency situation? What will they need to get around? How will you alert a hearing- or vision-impaired family member to an emergency?
What about pets? Food might be an obvious need, but what if you need to transport your animals? Even if they never leave the house, having pet carriers available for your furry friends might come in handy someday.
Some emergencies call for getting to a safe place inside, while others call for a hasty retreat. And once they’re out, you’ll want to have access to things like their veterinary records. Chip animals and make sure your animals have collars with up-to-date tags. They’ll help reunite you with your pets if you get separated.
HAVE THE TOOLS
A basic disaster kit will have a few things that will come in handy regardless of the situation.