Being prepared: 72-hour kit
Be prepared: make a 72-hour emergency kit.
Every household needs an emergency plan. It will help you and your family know what to do in case of an emergency.
If an emergency happens in your community, it may take emergency workers some time to reach you. You should be prepared to take care of yourself and your family for a minimum of 72 hours.
What is an emergency plan?
Every household needs an emergency plan. It will help you and your family know what to do in case of an emergency. Your family may not be together when an emergency occurs. Plan how to meet or how to contact one another, and discuss what you would do in different situations.
Both the Canadian Government and the Ontario Ministry of Community Safety & Correctional Services have online emergency plan outlines that you can use to create your own plan.
What is an emergency kit?
Your emergency survival kit should have everything you and your family would need to be safe and take care of yourselves for at least 3 days immediately following an emergency. It should also be portable enough to take with you in the case of an evacuation.
What should go into an emergency kit?
- radio (battery operated)
- dust mask
- pocket knife
- emergency cash in small denominations and quarters for phone calls
- sturdy shoes, a change of clothes, and a warm hat
- local map
- non-perishable foods
- manual can opener
- potable bottled water (4 litres per person, per day)
- permanent marker, paper and tape
- photos of family members and pets for identification purposes
- list of emergency point-of-contact phone numbers
- list of allergies to any food or drug (especially antibiotics)
- copy of health insurance and identification cards
- extra prescription eye glasses, hearing aid, or other vital personal items
- prescription medications and first aid supplies
- toothbrush, toothpaste, and hygiene products
- extra keys to your house and vehicle
- sleeping bag and blankets
Prepare and carry with you an emergency health information card. This will help you to communicate if you are found unconscious or incoherent. Include information about your medications, adaptive equipment, blood type, allergies and sensitivities, insurance numbers, immunization dates, communication difficulties, and preferred treatment, as well as contact information for your health providers, personal support network, and emergency contacts.
For older people and people with disabilities
Set up a personal support network
- Designate someone to check on you in an emergency and to help with evacuation or sheltering-in-place.
Personal care assistance
- If you receive assistance from a home healthcare agency or in-home support provider, find out how the provider will respond in an emergency. Designate backup or alternative providers that you can contact in an emergency.
For persons using a wheelchair
- Plan for how you will evacuate in an emergency and discuss it with your care providers. If you use a motorized wheelchair, have a manual wheelchair as a backup.
For persons who are blind or visually impaired
- Keep an extra cane by your bed. Attach a whistle in case you need to attract attention. Exercise caution when moving, as paths may be obstructed during an emergency.
For persons who are hearing impaired
- Keep extra batteries for your hearing aids with emergency supplies.
- Consider storing your hearing aids in a container attached to your nightstand or bedpost so you can locate them quickly after a disaster.
For persons with communication disabilities
- Store paper, writing materials, copies of a word or letter board, and preprinted key phrases in your emergency kit, wallet, purse, etc.
- sturdy leashes, muzzles, and pet carriers
- food, potable water, and medicine for at least one week
- non-spill bowls, manual can opener, and plastic lid
- plastic bags, litter box, and litter
- recent photo of each pet
- names and phone numbers of your emergency contact, emergency veterinary hospitals, and animal shelters
- copy of your pet’s vaccination history and any medical problems
- veterinarian’s name, address, and phone number
- portable fencing or baby gates
- family picture
- favourite toy, game, or book
- your child’s emergency card
- information on reunification locations and out-of-area contact
- comfort food and treats
This item was last modified on May 5, 2016