The most basic human need is for water, so maintaining an adequate supply of this most essential of all staples is the number one item on your Emergency Preparedness Checklist. Count on one gallon per day for each member of your family. It will also be a good idea to include water purification tablets just in case the emergency lasts longer than your water supply does.
How to Use an Emergency Preparedness Checklist
A close second to water is food. Because the ability to cook food may be limited during an emergency, think in terms of food that not only has a long shelf life, but additionally, food that won’t need to be cooked. Peanut butter and crackers are good choices. There are also power bars, granola bars and cereal bars, and powdered milk is always a good choice. Also excellent are the meals ready to eat (MRE’s) that soldiers often consume, which are now readily available on the civilian market.
The next item on your Emergency Preparedness Checklist is a first aid kit. This should include bandages, tape, scissors, gauze and peroxide. You’ll also want to include anti-inflammatories such as ibuprofen and aspirin. You don’t know in advance how long it will be until you again have access to a properly stocked pharmacy, so don’t forget to include a goodly supply of whatever prescription drug you need with your medical kit. Don’t forget an extra pair of prescription lenses for each family member who wears them and you’ll want plenty of basic hygienic items, most notably toilet paper and soap.
Even in a dire emergency, there is still an excellent chance that cell phone service will stay up and running, so make sure to include a battery-powered cell phone charger on your Emergency Preparedness Checklist. Even if cell phone service is still available, you will still want a battery powered radio so you will immediately be aware of any emergency instructions from local or national authorities. And don’t forget to include plenty of the right sized batteries to power these vital devices, as well as for a powerful flashlight.
Even after you’ve included enough water for drinking and basic hygiene, it is quite likely that you may not be able to wash you clothing for some period of time. For that reason, one change of clothes and a few changes of intimates should be included on your Emergency Preparedness Checklist. And don’t forget to include needles and thread.
You’ll certainly want to include such basic tools as a hammer, pliers, a wood saw and duct tape on your list. And don’t forget to include matches, aluminum foil, and a fire extinguisher.