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Making a 72-Hour Kit for Your Pittsburgh Home

72-Hour Kit SuppliesIn the event of a natural disaster or other emergency, many individuals might be ordered to evacuate their Pittsburgh rental homes with very short notice. Did you ever wonder if you could immediately organize everything your family will need to survive for several days? When you’re ready with a 72-hour kit for your family, you won’t have to worry. You will have everything you and your family needs, ready to go.

As indicated by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (Ready.gov), each family needs to be prepared for disasters and sudden evacuations. You can do this by creating a basic disaster kit with appropriate essentials that last at least three days. A 72-hour kit should have the basics like food, water, medicine, and other necessities. There are several prepackaged emergency kits available for purchase, but they are costly and sometimes do not include products that suit the particular needs of your family. The safest and more practical choice is to make a 72-hour kit for you and your relatives or companions.

So how would you make an emergency kit? There are tutorials on how to make a simple emergency preparedness kit on Ready.gov. Consider this checklist as the first move for your family’s 72-hour kit. For instance, you’ll need a way to stock and carry your items neatly and to keep the elements out. There are several recommendations to use a duffel bag, backpacks, or plastic bins. After that, you need to make sure that everything in your kit is packed in airtight plastic bags to keep them safe and dry.

When you have a secure way to store and carry your emergency kit, you can add basic items like water and food. Ready.gov has a complete checklist you can download and print. But a good rule of thumb is to provide at least one gallon of water per person per day in your kit, plus a three-day supply of non-perishable food items for each person. If you want to include canned goods in your kit, remember to add a manual can opener. Other necessary survival supplies, such as flashlights, extra batteries, matches, or a lighter, a first aid kit, moist towelettes, and garbage bags, should also be included in your kit and any prescription medications or medical supplies your family might need. If you have more space, consider including one change of clothes and shoes for every individual and a cloth or sleeping bag.

When you have the basics, you can start adding items specific to your family’s circumstances. Let’s say you have infants or pets in your family, don’t forget to include baby supplies and pet food in your kit. It may also be important to add things like feminine hygiene products, contact lens solution, or over-the-counter medications that are used regularly.  After this, you can start adding copies of important family documents, identification records, and cash or traveler’s checks to your emergency kit. Ensure that your cash, passports, and other essential files, are kept in a waterproof bag.

A significant part of preparing a 72-hour kit for your family is maintaining it every year. It is critical to check and change lapsed food products as needed and update your kit as your family’s needs change. Lastly, you will have to choose where to store your kit. It’s better to pick a location that is both safe and easy to reach, just in case you need to leave immediately. Make sure that every household of your family knows where the kit is, just to be safe. You might think about providing a smaller emergency kit for your car if something happens while you are away from home.

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