Essential Emergency Kit Information & Advice
By Denis Korn
This post "Essential Emergency Kit Information & Advice" is a valuable companion to the previous post Essential Checklist for Emergency Preparedness & Outdoor Adventure Planning - Including Vehicle Preparedness - Latest Update.
You are encouraged to share this post and its vital information with
family, friends, business associates, church and temple congregations
and other members of any organizations to which you belong. May this
post help you in your serious preparedness planning. Celebrate Peace of
Here are the crucial questions
to answer when assembling your emergency kit/grab-and-go/bug-out bag -
which is vital if you must leave your home or business quickly.
- If an evacuation has been declared, a severe weather event is imminent or a significant disaster has occurred, how will I know?
- If I have to evacuate, will I be in a cozy government evacuation
center with food, water, blankets and a bed, or will I be on my own in
the elements, a crude shelter or a friend's/relatives house?
- If specific government, church, community and friend's sheltering
options are not available, where do I go? How far? How do I get there?
- What conditions can I expect to encounter? best scenario? worst scenario?
- What are the weather conditions I am likely to encounter? What is the season?
- Will I be alone, or are others depending on me? Family? children? elderly? pets?
- Am I dependent on others? Who? Why? Do I expect the government to take care of me?
- What kind of support is likely to be available?
- How long should I prepare for?
- What if there is nothing left when I return?
- Are my essentials, heirlooms, personal treasures, irreplaceable
photographs, documents and financial assets secure if I leave with only
my grab-and-go bag?
- Do I have a reliable communication plan to contact family, friends and business associates at a moment's notice?
- What is the potential severity of the emergency I might experience?
- Will I have transportation, or will I be on foot?
- Do I have enough money on hand to pay for possible shelter, food or
supplies if I am suddenly evacuated and away from home or business?
- Am I truly prepared for the unexpected, a procrastinator or am I in denial?
To have a truly adequate emergency kit/grab-and-go/bug-out
bag the above questions must be answered. Your personal preparedness bag
contents will vary depending on numerous factors such as time, number
of persons, locations involved, mobility, support available, season,
comfort level desired and the degree of peace of mind you want.
Here is a list of the bare essentials
for every kit. Each category will have multiple options depending on
how you answer the above crucial questions. Cheap, inadequate and poorly
made provisions don't belong in a quality kit. Prepare your kit as if
your and your family's life and comfort depended on it - because it
- Water - bottled/filters/purifiers/tablets/containers
- Food - ready-to-eat/bars/trail mix/freeze dried/shelf stable/food preparation equipment
- Medical - quality medical kit with
medications/sunscreen/dental medic/foot care/safety pins/dust mask/gas
- Special Needs - food/medical/children/elderly/disabled/pets
- Tools - multi-tool/knife/wire/cable ties/duct
tape/rope/paracord/gloves/small axe/repair tools/super glue/aluminum
foil/ /manual can opener (often on multi-tool)/bungee cords/foldable or
- Communication - radio/hand crank - solar - battery/two-way radios/cell phone
- Fire - fire starter/lighter/matches/tinder/flint starter/magnifying glass
- Signaling & Orienting - whistle/signal mirror/compass/maps/GPS device
- Lighting - Hand crank - solar - battery/headlamp/flashlight/lantern/candles
- Power & Energy - batteries - regular and rechargeable/power-pack
for batteries & cell phone recharged by solar and/or hand
crank/solar and/or hand crank that charges devices directly
- Shelter - tarp/tent - tube or larger/plastic sheeting/insect protection
- Emergency Blankets/sleeping bags - emergency or larger or bivy sack
- Personal Hygiene/sanitary supplies/disinfectant
- Plastic Bags/ties
- Personal Security - weapon & ammo if appropriate/pepper spray/bear repellent/mace or other options
- Appropriate Clothing and Footwear - protection from the elements/apparel for warmth/heat packs - hand and body warmers
- Identification and Essential Documents - Bible/compact survival
handbook/personal ID/insurance and other key documents/entertainment
- Spare Keys
- Phone Numbers and Addresses - friends, relatives, and emergency organizations/agencies
- Instructions on meeting and/or communicating with family and/or friends during or after an emergency
- Cash/credit cards
- Configured Compact Emergency Kit with Essential Items
- Carrying Device - carry bag/backpack/suitcase/sturdy container/Food
& Supply Brick/duffel Bag (very durable and if you anticipate
carrying your bag any distance shoulder straps should be available with
your carry bag or duffel)
If time permits, take irreplaceable
items such as heirlooms, heirloom jewelry, photographs,
military/marriage/birth/deed records, computers, tablets, and personal
contact information and documents not included in your grab-and-go
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