How to Prepare Your Family for a National Disaster

National disasters and emergencies can be serious and unexpected events. Anything can, and often does, happen. Being prepared physically and mentally may help save your life and the lives of those around you.


  1. 1
    Take an emergency preparedness course. One of the best ones is offered at local community and technical colleges in classes.
  2. 2
    Keep a basic first aid kit on hand at all times. Make sure you order snake venom and bee venom treatments, as well.
  3. 3
    Water is vital. Store one gallon of water per person and pet per day. Keep at least three-day supply of water for each person and pet available.
  4. 4
    You should also have a water purification method ready to go, such as boiling your water, having a water disinfectant, or a filtration system. Boiling is the most preferred way to kill viruses, bacteria, and parasites. This is followed closely by disinfectants - such as unscented household bleach or chlorine dioxide tablets - and purification filters. The filters are handy to have for those times when you need to be on-the-go.
  5. 5
    As well as keeping a first aid kit and water, non-perishable food is a must. Be sure that you keep enough food stored for at least three meals per day per person and pet for a minimum of three days. Be sure to keep cooking utensils, plastic-ware, paper plates, paper towels, and a manual can opener handy.
  6. 6
    Keep an alternate cooking source - such as a charcoal grill or a camp stove - nearby. You never know when you will need it.
  7. 7
    Make sure that you have basic camping and emergency supplies: flashlights, extra batteries, extra prescription medications, battery- or solar-powered radio, cell phone and its charger, fire extinguisher, and matches. Extra blankets and clothes are also essential.
  8. 8
    Keep important documents and a secret stash of currency or other bartering items, like your birth certificates, passports, marriage licenses, mortgage paperwork, car titles, insurance cards and vaccination records, family contact information, house and car keys, and debit cards and cash.


  • You can survive for three weeks without food and three days without any water, but only three hours in severe weather. Make sure that you seek out a sufficient shelter for you and your family if you do not already have one.
  • You can conserve heat by stuffing your clothes and your shelter with dried leaves.
  • Develop a bartering skills, such as carpentry, sewing, gardening, auto repair, or medical expertise.
  • Do not forget the toothpaste! In addition to keeping your teeth clean, it can also be used to relieve minor burns, treat minor wounds, and relieve itchiness and swelling from bug bites.

Things You'll Need

  • Non-perishable food: 3 meals per person and pet for three to fourteen days, a manual can opener, cooking utensils, paper plates, plastic ware, and charcoal grill or camp stove. Also, a capacity to start your own garden and grow your own food would be very helpful.
  • Water: 3 to 14 gallons of water per person and pet (one gallon per person or pet per day) and water purification method.
  • Basic supplies: flashlight, batteries, battery- or solar-powered radio, cellular phone and its charger, basic first aid kit, extra blankets, extra set of clothes per person, soap, toothbrush, toothpaste, wet wipes, feminine protection, diapers, candles or lanterns, matches, grab-and-go kit, form of self defense, capacity to to generate off-grid heat or power (generator or solar panels), bug spray, sleeping bags, shampoo, hair brush, deodorant, toilet paper, extra pairs of glasses, ponchos and rain gear, tent, multi-purpose tools, scissors, maps of your area, activities for your kids, trauma-capable supplies for injuries that requires stitches, gold, silver, antibiotics, and surgical equipment.
  • Documents and money: birth certificates, insurance cards, marriage license, vaccination records, emergency contact information, mortgage paperwork, car titles and registration, cash to cover rent and one month supply of household needs (groceries, gas, etc.), keys, passports

Article Info

Categories: Disaster Preparedness