Building an emergency disaster kit can be easy and cheap, here's how

You never know when an emergency can strike, but it is best to prepare before an emergency, instead of scrambling during and after one. 

>> 5 things to help you easily understand the 'big one'

Emergency management leaders encourage individuals and families to have a plan in the event of a disaster. People, according to some experts, should prepare to survive on their own for seven to 10 days. Here's Washington’s King County Department of Emergency Management's suggestions on how to make an emergency kit on a budget for individuals and families.

>> Read more trending news 

Individuals

Recommended for you

Recommended for you

Recommended for you

Most read

  1. 1 EXCLUSIVE: Wanda Smith’s husband explains what happened with Kat
  2. 2 Cobb police officer, 22, helps pull woman from burning car
  3. 3 Video released of Georgia man killing two deputies

Take the time to think about your daily activities. What do you need to do to ensure that you are able to recover from a disaster that disrupts your life? Do you have pets? Below are basics for a checklist.

Water

• 1 gallon per person per day

Food

• Non-perishable food with a long shelf-life

• Consider products that do not require cooking

• Food items you like to eat

Electronics

• Light-sources that are battery powered or hand-cranked

• Portable radio and extra batteries (a great way to stay informed)

• Have alternate means to charge electronics, such as your phone or computer

Clothing

• At least one extra pair of warm clothing

• Rainproof outer clothing and boots to keep you dry

• Comfortable, sturdy shoes in case you need to walk long distances

First Aid kit

• Basic items, such as bandages, antiseptic wipes, gauze pads, scissors, tweezers, and pain-relief medication

• Prescriptions and personal medical equipment

Click here for a PDF that you can download listing emergency kit items.

Family:

In addition to the checklist above, it is important for your family to discuss how to contact one another, reunite, and respond during different situations. A good family emergency plan should include:

• A home meeting spot

• An out-of-area contact

• Public safety phone numbers for your area (police, fire, hospital)

• Reunification location, if you can’t make it to your home

Each family member should keep personal and emergency phone numbers in a safe place, such as your wallet or emergency kit. They should also know alternative methods for contacting each other if phone lines are down, and for traveling to your reunification location. Deciding these details in advance will help make you calmer during a disaster.

Click here for a PDF that you can download listing family emergency kit items.

Ready.gov has a variety of situations that you can prepare for, from extreme heatto floodingto tornadoesto hurricanes and wildfires.

More from AJC