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How to Prepare A 72-Hour Emergency Kit

Families and single people are usually told to evacuate their homes as fast as they possibly can during certain disasters. These people may end up being accommodated in makeshift shelters or at designated emergency camps. During such scenarios, you have very little time to prepare and will be given at most one opportunity to get your things and go. However, it is almost impossible to grab your essentials in a coordinated fashion in such a short amount time. In addition, some items may not even be available in your house. It is for this very reason that you have to prepare yourself a 72-Hour Emergency Kit in advance. A 72-Hour Kit is a collection of vital items that will help you survive during an emergency for up to 72 hours. Each individual should have his/her customized kit. Generally, in the worst case scenario, seventy-two hours is roughly the time it takes for help to finally get to the scene. There are times, however, when it takes emergency services longer to arrive – it's hard to foresee and prepare for those kinds of disasters.

When you are obligated to utilize the emergency kit, bear in mind that you will have, in most cases, been evacuated from your home either by car or on foot. These moments can be very stressful for you and your family members. You may be in a FEMA camp, a newly erected shelter, in a campground, on the road or on the way to your relatives homes. You definitely will not have all the luxuries of your home.

You should remember that an emergency kit is merely a survival kit; although your comfort is an issue, you don't have want to be extravagant when preparing one. There are premade 72 hour kits you can buy online that have all the necessary items you need; they range from 20 person deluxe kits that include portable toilets to 2 person lightweight kits that have energy bars and a tube tent in them.

If you don't have the money to buy the required number of emergency kits, you can try to also assemble one. It can be as simple as putting all these items in durable backpacks or suitcases with wheels as mobility can become an issue if you are evacuating on foot. An emergency kit will give you the extra boost of confidence and comfort of mind you need in an emergency situation.

To begin to prepare your personal 72-hour emergency kit, you have to first plan and make a list of all the items you need. You also have to bear in mind that your kits have to be lightweight and made for the individual; never throw in a bunch of items into a container and expect them to suit everyone's needs. It is imperative that you have a full understanding of your own family unit's needs and ascertain that you have included the necessary special items that are unique to each person in your family. As soon as you have determined and gathered together what you feel are the necessary items for an Emergency Preparedness Kit, you will need a container, a backpack, or a suitcase to put the items in.

If you, however, have no clue as to what items are universally accepted to be of crucial importance during an emergency, below is a sample of a 72-hour kit.

Example of a 72-Hour Emergency Kit

  • Ready to eat meals, energy bars (72-hour supply)
  • Water pouches or water boxes
  • Portable first aid kit, first aid book
  • Medicines
  • An all purpose knife
  • Flashlight with batteries and Candles
  • Hand crank/solar/battery powered radio
  • Whistle
  • Portable water filter and water purification tablets
  • Tube tent or a dome Tent
  • Water proof matches and/or magnesium fire starter
  • Wet towels, toilet paper, personal hygiene items
  • Blankets (or space blankets), clothing, gloves, hats
  • Money and important personal documents (birth certificates, deeds, bank accounts information, etc.)
  • Custom Tailored 72-Hour Emergency Kits For Babies, Children, and the Elderly
Emergency Kits for Babies and Children

Meeting the needs of young children and babies is of utmost importance during an emergency. If you lack any of the items that they may need, they will become restless and very uncomfortable. It will be easier to pacify them during an emergency if you have everything in store for them, including toys and special treats like candy.

Below is a list of items you will need to gather for your babies and children:

  • Comfort foods for children
  • Baby bottles
  • Wet towels
  • Powered milk
  • Baby food
  • Spoons
  • Medicines
  • Garbage bags
  • Toys, Games, Puzzles
  • Books
Finally, you, your children, and your relatives should all have assigned jobs - one thing that they need to do in case of emergency or evacuation --  in accordance to your emergency plan. All of you should routinely drill and practice how to use the items included in the 72-hour emergency kit to ensure that you are always prepared.

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