The initial focus needs to be on one’s family as you will not be able to help your community if you are not prepared yourself.  An important part of this preparation is to set aside supplies to last 3 – 5 days, medications, first aid supplies, and copies of important personal papers.

Make a Go-Bag

Emergency management officials recommend packing certain supplies in an easy-to-carry backpack or duffel bag, a “go-bag” of items that you can grab if you have to leave your home in a hurry. Most of these items are also listed as part of your emergency supply kit.

• Battery-operated radio and flashlight, with new batteries
• Contact and meeting place information for your household
• Cash (at least $50–$100 in small bills and ATM cards)
• Extra set of car and house keys
• Copies of important personal documents in a waterproof container
• Bottled water and non-perishable food (such as granola and energy bars)
• Sturdy shoes, lightweight raingear, hat and gloves
• First-aid kit and sunscreen
• Prescription medications (for about a week)
• Personal hygiene supplies
• Child care supplies or other special care items.

 Put Together an Emergency Supply Kit

An emergency supply kit is a stash of essential items to keep in your home in the event that you have to take shelter there for a few days. If you must stay indoors for safety reasons, you should be able to meet your primary needs. As a general rule, families should plan to have enough supplies in their home for 3 days. Here are some items to include in your emergency supply kit:

• Portable radio and flashlight, with new batteries for each
• Supply of drinking water (1 gallon per day per person)
• Non-perishable foods (for example, granola and energy bars, crackers, peanut butter, canned foods with a manual can opener, and non-perishable pasteurized milk)
• First-aid kit (bandages, antibiotic ointment, sterile cloths, pain reliever, alcohol pads, tweezers, scissors, latex or other sterile gloves, eyewash solution, and sunscreen)
• Prescription medications (make sure to replace them when they expire)
• Personal hygiene items (such as moist towelettes, toothbrush and toothpaste, feminine hygiene products, and toilet paper)
• Sanitation supplies (such as soap, bleach, and plastic trash bags)
• Whistle (in case you need to draw attention to your location)
• Special need items for babies, the elderly, and family members with disabilities
• Sturdy shoes, lightweight raingear, hat and gloves
• Copies of important personal documents (such as insurance cards, birth certificates, marriage license, photo IDs, and passport) in a waterproof container.


Additional Information

(Listing of other helpful web sites) – Washoe County Emergency Operations Center website that includes information on personal as well as community preparedness. – Web page of Washoe County Public Health District’s Division of Public Health Preparedness.  Provides links to multiple resources including family disaster preparedness and one family health emergency information. – Additional information on Federal web site. – Federal Emergency Management web site with information on personal and community preparedness as well as disaster response. – Web site of the American Red Cross with additional information. & – two websites of companies that sell pre-packaged food storage and emergency kits.

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