8 Tips to Help You Assemble the Best Emergency Safety Kit
An emergency kit is more than just having a kit that enables you to act quickly and effectively to survive any condition. It requires some necessary items.
Emergency preparedness involves more than just a strong mindset that helps you to jump in and do what it takes to survive any situation. You’ll also need some vital supplies to carry you through the first few days to weeks of an emergency. Whether you come across severe weather or experience a house fire, you’ll be able to make it through the worst of it by using these tips to assemble a well-stocked emergency safety kit.
Plan to Assemble Two Kits
One of the most common mistakes people make is trying to fit too much stuff in a bug-out bag that you might need to carry for long distances. Assembling a larger emergency safety kit at home allows you to plan for enough water and food to help you survive long periods of time sheltering in place. Then, create a smaller kit that you can easily carry. To-go kits should fit into a duffel bag or backpack, even if it means having less of a food and water supply.
Tailor Your Kits to Fit Your Location
The kit that you’ll need to survive in the desert should look quite different from one that is designed to help you make it through a blizzard. There are also some differences in what you’ll pack in your kit that is based on where you might be during an emergency.
For example, certain neighborhoods are prone to tornadoes that could knock out the power supply while you shelter in place. Others could experience flooding which makes fleeing the situation more likely. Take a moment to think about the types of events you’re likely to experience in a given area, and use this info to guide your decisions on what to include.
Start With the Right Tarp
Tarps are one of the most versatile pieces of equipment that you can put into a survival kit. They pack down to a relatively small size, and you can use them for everything from building a shelter to protecting other gear from rain and fire.
Keeping your expected climate in mind, pick out one that offers benefits such as water or fire resistance. Ones that are made up of heavy-duty materials can also stand up to severe weather conditions if you need to build a shelter or use it to cover a damaged roof.
Move On to Food and Water
No doubt having a proper food and water supply can help you weather any storm, but many people drastically underestimate how much they need to survive in short and long-term situations. For water, you should have one gallon available for each person in your survival pod per day. For your shelter-in-place kit, plan for at least two weeks of drinking water. For your bug-out bag, you can likely only manage three days' worth per person. However, you can use water filtration straws to make it easier to find water when you run out.
Food supplies should meet the caloric content necessary to sustain each person in your party for specific periods of time, while also considering that you might require additional calories during periods of heavy physical activity.
Include a Multiple Purpose Tool
You can find fairly simple multi-purpose tools that contain the essentials, such as a knife and can opener. Or, you can opt for one that has additional features that may include screwdrivers and other tools that can come in handy.
Either way, you’ll appreciate having what you need to quickly open a can of food or cut up rope to hang up your shelter. Since these tools tend to get pulled out of kits the most often, make sure you have a separate one to take camping or on other adventures so that you keep your emergency kit’s tool where it belongs.
Add Personal Hygiene Essentials
Reusable toilet paper might seem odd, but you’ll appreciate not running out if you are literally on the run outdoors. You can also add some wet wipes, and feminine hygiene products along with a soap to help everyone feel comfortable during even the worst survival situations.
As you plan for hygiene, remember to consider additional health care needs. For example, some people might need to pack over-the-counter pain relievers and other types of medication to manage their health conditions.
Gather Essential Paperwork
If you’ve ever had to replace your driver’s license or social security card, then you can just imagine how hard it would be to do after a major local disaster. While you should have your driver’s license or ID on you most of the time, you can get copies of other documents that can help prove your identity if you must leave without them.
Putting copies of documents such as your birth and marriage certificate into your kit makes it easier to manage life if your originals get lost or damaged. Having your insurance info in your kit can also help you start handling a claim when you can’t go back to your house.
Remember Your Pet’s Needs
Finally, remember that you might not just be needing to support a human’s survival. Your pets will also need care, which is why you’ll want to add pet food and water for their needs to the list.
While you’re assembling their part of the kit, remember to add in a leash or collar, since you might need to travel outside of your home. Adding a copy of their vaccination records along with prescription medications are additional steps to take to ensure that your pet has what they need during an emergency.
Prepping an emergency safety kit is the first step to having a strong chance of survival. Next, you’ll need to remember to check your kit at least once a month to make sure that all of the supplies are in working condition. Rotating out items with a shelf life helps you be certain that you can grab your kit and go at the first sign that it’s time to implement your survival plan.