Emergency preparedness kits are essential tools of protection to have at home in the event of a natural disaster, power, or other utility outage. Kits can be as rudimentary or complex as you choose, but any kit you put together should be able to sustain you and your family for at least 72 hours. This is typically a pretty good window for getting utility service restored and beginning the recovery process if a disaster or other emergency has occurred. Being able to comfortably sustain yourself, family, and pets during an emergency situation is important to everyone’s well being. Here are some useful tips for putting together a 72 hour emergency kit at home.
Pack Only Essentials
For smaller, more immediate short term emergency kits, you will want to emphasize survival essentials. 72 hour kits should contain primarily food (pet food included), water, medication, first aid kits, flashlights, and other immediately useful items. A lightweight pack with survival essentials will make coping with a sustained power outage or other emergency situation more efficient. The main benefit of these types of kits is to have essential items in a single, convenient place for fast retrieval. This is of particular importance during a power outage since you may need to be able to locate your kit in the dark.
Keep Important Documents
You should also make a point to keep copies of important documents in your kit. These may include medical and insurance information, as well as essential emergency contact information. Having a couple sets of photocopies of these documents is a good idea. Keep originals in a secure location such as a reliable safe and place copies in key locations like an emergency kit. While you may never need to reference these documents, it is a good idea to keep copies of important documents in a safe place if you need important account or medical documentation. This also goes for pet information which you may need in the event of an emergency.
72 hour emergency kits are meant to be small, easy to prepare, and sustainable for a short amount of time. This does not mean, however, that you should put off planning for emergency situations where you may need a kit. 72 hour kits still require a good deal of planning to make sure that you have everything included in the kit for comfort and well being. Be sure to compile a list of items you want to include in your kit and pack it soon after. Delaying putting together a kit, even a smaller 72 hour kit, can compromise your overall preparation in the event of an emergency.