Earthquake Preparedness Kit Checklist

causes of an earthquake


Survival kits for earthquakes, floods, storms, and other disasters are just as important as having working smoke detectors in the home. Planning ahead and putting together emergency preparedness kits now will make an emergency easier to live through and may save a life.

It’s recommend that emergency kits have 72 hours worth of supplies for every person in the household. Keep that in mind when putting together or purchasing your emergency preparedness kits.  At the top of the list are food, water, and first aid.

Survival List of Food

Good foods to include in your survival kit include any canned goods, protein bars, peanut butter, and trail mix. Buy foods that come in small packages, and will provide a lot of energy with little preparation. Consider the special food needs of everyone in your home. Babies may need formula and bottles. Even if they are breastfed, unforeseen circumstances may prevent mom from feeding baby until help can arrive. Diabetics will have specific food needs as well. To make packing the survival food easy, you can buy freeze dried food to store.


You need to store at least 3 gallons of water per person at a minimum. But in all honesty, if you do not have any running water, then you will need more than that for cooking, cleaning, first aid, and other sanitation needs. Rain barrels (be green and prepare for an emergency) and water from the hot water heater (remove water only if the gas is turned off) can provide additional sources of water.

First Aid Kit

Any good basic first aid kit will be sufficient to add to emergency preparedness kits. It should have bandages, eyewash, scissors, and basic over the counter medications such as ibuprofen. Add a week’s supply of any prescription medications you take and other supplies you need daily, such as for contacts, dentures, glasses, etc.

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Shelter and Sleeping

For comfort and warmth pack a tent, sleeping bags, and blankets.

Tools and Work supplies

Basic tools such as pliers, a Leatherman or other all-purpose tool, and a hammer may be invaluable after the disaster hits. You will need a wrench or pliers to turn off the water and gas in the event the lines are damaged. Work gloves may be needed to wear while fixing damage or sorting through rubble.


You can go with the cheap bathroom set up of a bucket, garbage bags, and toilet paper. Or you can spring for a camping toilet that better contains the waste. Pack some baby wipes so that you don’t waste water. Don’t forget diapers and diaper cream for baby. You’ll appreciate a toothbrush and toothpaste as well. states to also include, “Household chlorine bleach and medicine dropper…in an emergency, you can use it to treat water by using 16 drops of regular household liquid bleach per gallon of water. Do not use scented, color safe or bleaches with added cleaners.”

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While you may have packed food that does not require cooking, you may need to boil water to drink. For cooking and sanitation it’s good to store a propane stove, can opener, pots, pans, plates, cups, and utensils. Waterproof matches are also a must.

Clothes and Shoes

Here’s where to stash some old clothes and shoes. You’ll need closed toed shoes, long sleeve shirts, pants, jacket, socks, etc. Think of the worst weather conditions in your area and prepare for living outside in that.


Include flashlights and camp lights and lots of batteries.


A radio may be your only source of communication for several days. Store a hand crank radio so that you don’t need an endless supply of batteries.


The local store may have supplies you can get, but don’t expect the ATM or credit card machines to be operating. In a major disaster, cash is best.

Storage of Survival Kits for Earthquakes, Floods, Storms, and Other Disasters

Store all items together in a cool dry place that will be easy to get to if needed. Inside a garbage can with the lid secured in the garage is often a good storage location for survival kits. Check the expiration of food and water every six months and all other items, especially batteries, once a year.

To Properly Prepare for an Earthquake or Other Natural Disaster, Include the Pets

Your pets also need an emergency kit. And each one will need most of the same basic supplies as you. For each pet, store enough, food, water, and medications to last at least three days. Also pack extra leashes, collars, litter boxes, and bedding for your pets, as you may not have access to those for several days.