Build an Emergency Supply Kit

After a disaster occurs, you may need to be self-sufficient for three days or more. This means being able to survive without grocery stores, pharmacies, running water, trash or sewer services, electricity, gas, and/or telephones. Also, it is important to remember that emergency responders will have their hands full and may not be able to immediately answer calls for assistance during disaster situations.

To ensure that you can go it alone for at least three days, prepare for disasters before they strike: build an emergency supply kit!

You should build kits for the following locations: 








This kit should be kept in a designated place and be ready to "grab and go" if you need to leave your home quickly.

You may also consider storing additional supplies for sheltering-in-place (for up to two weeks).


This is a smaller kit that should be kept in one container and be ready to "grab and go" if you need to evacuate the building quickly.


Keep a smaller kit in the trunk of your car in case you become stranded or are not able to return home.

In addition to the basic supplies, a car kit should include flares, jumper cables, and seasonal supplies.



Listed below are six basic types of supplies that you should stock in emergency supply kits:

  • Water

Knowing how to store and purify water should be a top priority. Download the Safe Drinking Water in an Emergency handout for more information on this topic.

  • Food

It is important to know how to store emergency food supplies. For more information on this topic, download the Emergency Food Supplies handout.

  • First-aid supplies
  • Clothing and bedding
  • Tools and emergency supplies
  • Specialty items

To begin building your emergency supply kit, download a copy of the Emergency Supplies Checklist.

Additional information on how to build a kit may be found at:

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