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Build A Hurricane Evacuation Kit

Hurricane Evacuation KitBuilding your hurricane evacuation kit is easy, if you just remember that you will be leaving under emergency conditions, and when you get to a shelter, you won't have much room. Each member of your household should have a kit, and each person should carry and maintain his/her own kit. Each should bear the owner's name. The kits should be prepared in advance, should you have to evacuate with only minutes of notice.

Start with a backpack and/or nylon "draw string" type camper's laundry bag, at least 12" in diameter and 24" long, or as required. Following are the items that you should put into your kit:

For Sleeping

  • Lightweight blanket;
  • Small car pillow;
  • (optional - inflatable air mattress)


  • Bar of soap;
  • Toothbrush;
  • Toothpaste;
  • Comb;
  • Tweezers;
  • Several packages of pocket Kleenex tissues;
  • One roll of toilet paper;
  • Pocket First Aid kit;
  • Insect repellant;
  • One face cloth;
  • One light bath towel;
  • One change of underwear, socks;
  • Diapers, etc., for babies;
  • (optional - several disposable razors)

For Eating

  • Canteen (3 quarts) of water;
  • Stainless Steel cup or Sierra cup;
  • Fork, knife, spoon;
  • Several granola bars (or such, in zip-loc bags);
  • Special diet items, or baby food as necessary;
  • (optional - camping "mess kit");


  • Flashlight w/batteries;
  • Pocket radio w/batteries;
  • Pocketknife;
  • Matches and/or lighter;
  • Emergency whistle;
  • Cash (paper and coins);
  • Waist "fanny pack" to hold small items;
  • Playing cards;
  • Lanyard for keeping keys secure around neck, or on belt;
  • Identification (laminated or in zip-loc bags);
  • Phone Numbers (laminated or in zip-loc bags);
  • Cell Phone


  • Any required prescription and/or "over the counter" medications;
  • HMO, PPO, Health plan cards/doctor's name/phone number

In most cases, you will be told that if going to a shelter, you must bring necessities and your own food. The above mentioned items are essential, but do not make the minimum requirements for an extended stay. They will get help you get by for a couple of days, at best.

Plan on needing one gallon of water per person per day. You know what your food requirements will be - just don't bring frozen steaks, and microwavable food. Treat your supplies as if they were the last items on earth - when they are gone, they're gone. Your shelter may have restrooms, but they won't be stocked for very long. Eventually, other supplies will be brought into the shelter, but when and how much is a guess.

Most of the items are available at most stores. Camping items are available in the sporting goods departments of K-Mart, Wal*Mart, etc. or from sporting goods stores. They are also available from mail order companies, such as Campmor, Cabela's, The Sportsman's Guide, etc., and they usually have Internet Catalogs online.

Well, you get the idea. You can add other things, if you need them. Remember, though, that you will be travelling fast and light. Use the KISS formula: "Keep It Simple, S...!"