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Preparing for the Storm...Planning Ahead

Hampton Roads residents normally have plenty of time to prepare for a storm, but it's never too early to start thinking ahead....

After a disaster, local officials and relief workers will be on the scene, but they cannot reach everyone immediately. You could get help in hours, or it may take days. Would your family be prepared to cope with the emergency until help arrives?

  • Your family will cope best by preparing for disaster before it strikes. One way to prepare is by assembling a Disaster Supplies Kit . Once disaster hits, you won't have time to shop or search for supplies. But if you've gathered supplies in advance, your family can endure an evacuation or home confinement.
  • Read over our Evacuation Plan page carefully - ahead of the storm.
  • Be sure to develop a complete Family Weather Emergency Plan!
  • And don't forget the family pet. Make sure they will be cared for as part of your family plan as well.
Family Disaster Supplies Kit

These contents can be assembled over a five month period on a weekly basis and perishable items should be changed or replaced every six months.

Essentials:
  • Battery-operated radio
  • Flashlight Extra batteries
  • Do not include candles, which cause more fires after a disaster than anything else.
Water:
  • 3 gallons/person, minimum, in a food-grade, plastic container
  • Additional water for sanitation
Food:

Minimum 3-day supply of non-perishable food that requires no refrigeration or preparation and little or no water.

  • Dry cereal
  • Canned fruits
  • Canned juice
  • Ready-to-eat soups (not concentrated)
  • Peanut butter
  • Canned vegetables
  • Ready-to-eat canned meals
  • Quick energy snacks, graham crackers
First Aid Kit:

(one for your home and one for each car)

  • Scissors
  • Thermometer
  • Needle
  • Latex gloves (2 pairs)
  • Moistened towelettes
  • 2" sterile gauze pads (4-6)
  • 2" sterile roller bandages (3 rolls)
  • Sun screen
  • Tweezers
  • Cleansing agent/soap
  • Tongue depressor (2)
  • Assorted sizes of safety pins
  • 4" sterile gauze pads (4-6)
  • 3" sterile roller bandages (3 rolls)
  • Triangular bandages
  • Tube of petroleum jelly or other lubricant
  • Sterile adhesive bandages in assorted sizes
Non-Prescription Drugs:
  • Laxative
  • Aspirin or non-aspirin pain reliever
  • Anti-diarrhea medication
  • Antacid (for stomach upset)
  • Activated charcoal (use if advised by the Poison Control Center)
  • Syrup of Ipecac (use to induce vomiting if advised by the Poison Control Center)
Tools and Supplies:
  • Whistle
  • Crowbar
  • Paper, pencil
  • Medicine dropper
  • Signal flare
  • Assorted nails, wood screws
  • Plastic storage containers
  • Cash or traveler's checks, change
  • Aluminum foil
  • Compass
  • Plastic sheeting
  • Needles, thread
  • Matches in a waterproof container
  • Pliers, screwdriver, hammer
  • Heavy cotton or hemp rope
  • Map of the area (for locating shelters)
  • Non-electric can opener, utility knife
  • Mess kits, or paper cups, plates and plastic utensils
  • Tape, duct and plumber's tape or strap iron
  • Patch kit and can of seal-in-air for tire
  • Shut-off wrench, to turn off household water
Sanitation:
  • Disinfectant Soap, liquid detergent
  • Feminine supplies
  • Household chlorine bleach
  • Personal hygiene items
  • Plastic bucket with tight lid
  • Toilet paper, towelettes, paper towels
  • Plastic garbage bags, ties (for personal sanitation uses)
Clothing and Bedding:
  • Sunglasses
  • Hat and gloves
  • Blankets or sleeping bags
  • Rain gear
  • Sturdy shoes or work boots
  • Thermal underwear
  • One complete change of clothing and footwear per person
For Baby:
  • Formula
  • Bottles
  • Powdered milk/soy milk
  • Diapers
  • Medication
For Pets: (Also see our Emergency Pet Care Page)
  • Food Record of vaccinations
  • Leash, harness or carrier
  • Non-tippable food and water containers
Important Family Documents:
  • Important telephone numbers
  • Record of bank account numbers
  • Family records (birth, marriage, death certificates)
  • Inventory of valuable household goods
  • Copy of will, insurance policies, contracts, deeds, stocks and bonds
  • Record of credit card account numbers and companies
  • Copy of passports, social security car, immunization records
Family Medical Needs:
  • Insulin
  • Denture needs
  • Contact lenses and supplies
  • Prescription drugs
  • Extra eye glasses
  • Heart and high blood pressure medication
Entertainment:
  • Games and books

(This list courtesy of The American Red Cross)

Last updated: 3/21/2008 4:20:45 PM