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Build COVID-19 preparedness into your emergency kit
Posted on September 7, 2020 at 9:28 pm by Clay Curtin
National Preparedness Month
and this year’s reminder includes updated recommendations to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the aftermath of a disaster.
After an emergency, you may need to survive on your own for several days. Being prepared means having your own
to last for several days. A disaster supplies kit is a collection of basic items your household may need in the event of an emergency.
Make sure your emergency kit is stocked with the items on the checklist below. Most of the items are inexpensive and easy to find and any one of them could save your life. Headed to the store?
Download a printable versio
n to take with you. Once you take a look at the basic items consider what
your family might have, such as supplies for
Basic disaster supplies kit
To assemble your kit store items in airtight plastic bags and put your entire disaster supplies kit in one or two easy-to-carry containers such as plastic bins or a duffel bag.
A basic emergency supply kit could include the following recommended items:
(one gallon per person per day for at least three days, for drinking and sanitation)
(at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food)
Battery-powered or hand crank radio and a NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert
First aid kit
Whistle (to signal for help)
Dust mask (to help filter contaminated air)
Plastic sheeting and duct tape (to
shelter in place
Moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties (for personal sanitation)
Wrench or pliers (
to turn off utilities
Manual can opener (for food)
Cell phone with chargers and a backup battery
Recommended Supplies List
Additional emergency supplies
Since Spring 2020, the CDC has recommended people include additional items in their kits to help prevent the spread of coronavirus or other viruses and the flu.
Consider adding the following items to your emergency supply kit based on your individual needs:
Cloth face coverings
(for everyone ages 2 and above), soap, hand sanitizer, disinfecting wipes to disinfect surfaces
Non-prescription medications such as pain relievers, anti-diarrhea medication, antacids or laxatives
Prescription eyeglasses and contact lens solution
Infant formula, bottles, diapers, wipes and diaper rash cream
Pet food and extra water for your pet
Cash or traveler's checks
Important family documents such as copies of insurance policies, identification and bank account records saved electronically or in a waterproof, portable container
Sleeping bag or warm blanket for each person
Complete change of clothing appropriate for your climate and sturdy shoes
Matches in a waterproof container
Feminine supplies and personal hygiene items
Mess kits, paper cups, plates, paper towels and plastic utensils
Paper and pencil
Books, games, puzzles or other activities for children
Maintaining your kit
After assembling your kit remember to maintain it so it is ready when needed:
in a cool, dry place.
Store boxed food in tightly closed plastic or metal containers.
Replace expired items as needed.
Re-think your needs every year and update your kit as your family’s needs change.
Kit storage locations
Since you do not know where you will be when an emergency occurs, prepare supplies for home, work and cars.
Home: Keep this kit in a designated place and have it ready in case you have to leave your home quickly. Make sure all family members know where the kit is kept.
Work: Be prepared to shelter at work for at least 24 hours. Your work kit should include food, water and other necessities like medicines, as well as comfortable walking shoes, stored in a “grab and go” case.
Car: In case you are stranded, keep a kit of emergency supplies
in your car
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