Let’s be honest, just about everyone is going to be touched by some type of disaster at some point during their lives. According to experts. disasters were responsible for up to 0.4% of all deaths worldwide. And some of the worst natural disasters have happened in the U.S, and these disasters include a variety of events including tropical cyclones, wildfires, terrorist attacks, tornadoes, hurricanes, and floods. Although the U.S death toll due to natural disasters isn’t as large as some other countries, thousands of people are still affected by natural disasters each year, and hundreds of people are killed by them.

Well, we should probably qualify the statement that hundreds of people in the U.S die each year from natural disasters because that has certainly changed with the arrival of the novel coronavirus COVID-19. As of the time we wrote this guide, Covid-19 was responsible for over 430,000+ deaths worldwide—with the U.S having more than 110,000+ of those deaths. As can be seen, now more than ever, people need to have an emergency disaster kit for their home.

What prevents a lot of people from building a home emergency disaster kit, however, is not the belief that they’re safe, but more likely is their knowledge of how to build these kits. Many people simply don’t know what they should have in their home disaster kits, so we’ve decided to go ahead and write a guide on the subject. This guide should help all of our readers design and put together the best disaster kit available for them.

Building Your Home Disaster Kit

Okay, now that we all understand the need for a home disaster kit, we thought that we’d go ahead and give our readers the practical information they need to build their home disaster kit. And like everything else, COVID-19 has changed the concept of a disaster kit slightly, so we’ve decided to update our disaster kit with the new disaster kit needs established by the latest pandemic.

The Basic Supplies

We thought that we’d start this guide with the basics of what should be in a home disaster kit. The following items should be in everyone’s kit, regardless of where they live. Let’s take a look at some of the items, shall we?

  • 1-Gallon Of Water Per Person Per Day
  • 3-Days Of Food For Every Person In The Home
  • Toilet Paper & Feminine Hygiene Products
  • Soap And/Or Personal Hygiene Wipes
  • A Deluxe First Aid Kit
  • A Flashlight
  • A Hand-Crank NOAA Radio
  • Extra Batteries
  • 7-Day Supply Of Personal Medications & Medical Supplies
  • Copies Of Person Documents (ID, Proof Of Address, SS Card, Birth Certificates, Etc.)
  • List Of Medicines Sorted By Family Members
  • List Of Medical Conditions Sorted By Family Members
  • Cell Phone & Crank Cell Phone Charger
  • Emergency Blankets
  • Maps Of The Local Area
  • A Dust Mask
  • A Multi-Tool
  • Household Bleach

Disaster Kit Add-On Items

Although the basic disaster kit is a good starting kit for most people, some people are going to want to build on it according to their needs. That’s because the basic kit is designed for a single person or a couple who doesn’t have pets or kids, and are just preparing for a generic disaster. A people’s needs change, they’re going to want to add some of the add-on categories below to make sure their disaster kit fits their needs.

Add-On Items For Children

The following disaster kit add-on items are useful for families with children. Each home should adapt the following needs to their particular situation. For example, not all households have infants that need to be bottle-fed, so in those instances, the consumer can remove the items from their list.

  • Extra Bottles, Rings & Nipples
  • No-Mix Formula
  • Record Of The Child’s Immunizations
  • List Of The The Child’s Allergies
  • Diapers & Baby Wipes
  • Extra Pacifiers & Toys
  • Extra Snacks & Juice Boxes
  • Pedialyte

Add-On Items For Pets

If the household has pets, then they might want to consider adding some or all of the items listed below. Let’s take a quick look at them.

  • Extra Pet Food
  • Extra Water For All Pets
  • Any Required Pet Medications & Vitamins (7-Day Supply)
  • Extra Blankets Or Pet Winter Clothing
  • Extra Litter Or Pet Bedding

Add-On Items For COVID-19 

Below are items that are useful for not only the COVID-19 pandemic but for any pandemics that might occur in the future.

  • Thermometer
  • Disinfectant Wipes
  • Household Bleach And/Or Microban 24-Hour
  • Face Shield
  • N95 Masks
  • Hand Sanitizer
  • Liquid Soap

Add-On Items For Hurricane, Earthquake, Floods & Tornadoes

Other items that many people are going to want to consider are what we like to call Natural Disaster Add-On Items. These are items that are useful for disasters such as earthquakes, hurricanes, and tornadoes.

  • LED Headlamp
  • Pen Light 
  • 4 Glow Sticks
  • 1 Bandanna For Each Person
  • Duct Tape
  • 8-Hour Hand Warmers
  • An Emergency Whistle
  • Waste Disposal Bags
  • Work Gloves
  • Freeze-Dried Food
  • 1,200 Kcal Food Bars
  • Solar Lantern
  • 1 Poncho
  • Plastic Sheeting And/Or Tarps
  • A Waterproof Bag

Add-On Items For Wildfires

Below are some of the items that people who are in areas afflicted by wildfires might want to keep in their homes. Be advised that the following items are meant to be used in conjunction with the basic disaster kit and other disaster add-on items as needed.

  • Tomahawk And/Or Kukri
  • Compact Binoculars
  • EDC Backpack
  • Folding Saw
  • Survival Whistle
  • Waterproof Matches
  • Orange Signal Flag
  • Fire Resistant Wool Blankets
  • Water Filtration Bottle
  • N-95 Masks
  • 50-Feet Of Nylon Rope
  • Burn Cream Packs
  • Multi-Function Shovel
  • Fire Extinguisher

Additional Disaster Kit Tips

Now that we’ve given our readers specific instructions on building a disaster kit that fits their family’s specific needs, we thought that we’d conclude this guide by giving everyone some advice on how to keep their disaster kits up to date and ready to be used in an emergency.

  • Take Note Of Medicine & Food Items Expiration Dates
  • Be Sure To Rotate Medicines & Food Items Periodically
  • Add Additional Items To The Kit As Needed
  • Replace Used Items As Needed
  • Keep The Kit In A Safe Place & Off Of The Floor