Severe Weather Prep: Building an emergency kit

SOUTH BEND, IND -- It is Severe Weather Preparedness Week, and one activity you can do is to create an emergency preparedness kit. This will not only prepare your family for potential severe weather this season, but can also be a fun, educational activity for children home from school this week.

While the contents of your kit will depend on specific family members’ needs (including pets), this is a list of some important items. Your kit can be housed in a plastic bin or other waterproof container.

  • Water: At least one gallon per family member per day, for at least three days. Water is used for both drinking and sanitation.
  • Food: Enough non-perishable food items to last at least three days. Items can include peanut butter, canned fruits and vegetables that are ready to eat, protein bars, granola, and baby food (if necessary)
  • First aid kit
  • Phone charger or battery pack
  • Flashlight with extra batteries
  • Can opener for food
  • Wet wipes to use for personal cleansing
  • Whistle to call for help
  • Prescription medications
  • Pet food and extra water
  • Family documents: Copies of insurance, identification, bank records.
  • Sleeping bags for each family member
  • Change of clothes for each family member, including extra diapers if needed
  • Fire extinguisher
  • Activities for children: Games, puzzles, books, toys.

For more suggested items for your kit, visit this website.

When your kit is ready, store in a safe location. Make sure all family members know where it is and can grab it at a moment’s notice. It is also recommended to create kits for multiple locations—home, work, and in your car. You never know when or where severe weather will strike.

If you already have a kit, this week is a good time to restock or make sure food items have not expired.

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