It’s Hurricane Season. Here’s Your Emergency Kit Checklist.

By Crystal Harlan

August 17, 2023

Don’t wait until a hurricane is headed your way to assemble your emergency kit; otherwise you may not be able to acquire everything you need. Use this checklist to get started now.

When a hurricane is approaching your area, you need to follow local evacuation mandates and recommendations to keep you and others safe. However, if you are not mandated to evacuate and decide to ride out the storm in your home, you may find yourself without electricity, water or access to stores in the days following the storm.

That’s why it’s imperative that you have food, drinkable water, and other supplies on hand. 

This is a basic list to get you started. It’s always a good idea to have extra supplies, especially food and water, to help out neighbors if needed.

  • Drinking water (Have one gallon per person per day for several days for drinking and washing, and extra for pets.)
  • Food (Stock up on non-perishables that don’t require preparation.)
  • Manual can opener
  • Cash
  • Battery-powered or hand crank radio and an NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert
  • Flashlight
  • First aid kit
  • Extra batteries
  • Generator (Definitely don’t wait until a storm is coming to purchase a generator or you’ll likely return home empty-handed.)
  • Important documents. (Put them all together in a water-proof container. These include insurance policies, drivers licenses, passports, bank account records, etc.)
  • Plastic tarps and duct tape
  • Cell phone with chargers and charged backup batteries
  • Prescription medications. (If you take a prescription, make sure to have at least a two-week supply on hand.)
  • Non-prescription medications and toiletries, such as Tylenol, bug spray, and feminine hygiene products.
  • Infant formula, bottles, diapers, and wipes
  • Garbage bags
  • Pet food
  • Fire extinguisher
  • Non-sparking wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
  • Matches
  • Whistle to signal for help
  • Paper cups, plates, and towels (Not having to wash dishes will conserve water.)
  • Propane (If you lose electricity and an electric stove, you can always cook on your grill outdoors–after the storm has passed and it’s safe to do so, of course.)
  • Local maps
  • Books, board games and a deck of cards  to keep everyone occupied

Sources: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)

RELATED: 8 Common Myths and Misconceptions About Hurricanes




  • Crystal Harlan

    Crystal is a bilingual editor and writer with over 20 years of experience in digital and print media. She is currently based in Florida, but has lived in small towns in the Midwest, Caracas, New York City, and Madrid, where she earned her MA in Spanish literature.



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