Emergency Preparedness

Print out the calendar, and after you purchase or acquire an item or complete an activity, check the space next to it.

Month 1

Purchase:
__ Water -- 3 gallons per person and pet
__ Hand-operated, non-electric can opener and bottle opener
__ Instant drinks -- coffee, tea, powdered soft drinks, etc.
__ 2 Flashlights with batteries

Activities:
__ Make your family disaster preparedness plan
__ Inventory disaster supplies already on hand, including camping gear
__ If you fill your own water containers, mark them with the date filled
__ Date water and food containers if they are not dated
__ Conduct a home hazard hunt

Month 2

Purchase:
__ Canned meat, stew or pasta meals -- 5 per person
__ Sanitary napkins
__ Videotape
__ Family-size first aid kit

Activities:
__ Change battery and test smoke detector (Purchase and install one if you don't already have it)
__ Videotape your home, including contents, for insurance purposes. Store the tape with friends or family who live out of town

Month 3

Purchase:
__ Canned fruit -- 3 cans per person
__ Any foods for special dietary needs -- enough for three days
__ Toilet paper -- 2 rolls per person
__ Crescent wrenches or utility shutoff tools

Activities:
__ Conduct a home fire drill
__ Check with your child's day car center or school to find out about their disaster plans
__ Locate gas meter and water shutoff points, and attach or store a wrench or shutoff tool next to them
__ Establish an out-of-state contact to call in case of emergency

Month 4

Purchase:
__ Canned vegetables -- 4 cans per person
__ Extra baby bottles, formula and diapers, if needed
__ Extra pet supplies -- food, collar, leash, etc.
__ Large storage containers for preparedness supplies

Activities:
__ Place a sturdy pair of shoes and a flashlight under your bed so that they are handy during an emergency
__ Place a supply of prescription medicines in a storage container and date the medicines if they are not already so indicated on the label
__ Begin putting supplies in storage containers, and include blankets or sleeping bags for each family member

Month 5

Purchase:
__ Canned, ready-to-eat soup -- 2 cans per person
__ Liquid dish soap
__ Plain liquid bleach
__ Portable AM/FM radio with batteries (or a solar/windup version)
__ Anti-bacterial liquid hand soap
__ Disposable hand wipes

Activities:
__ Make photocopies of important papers and place them in storage containers
__ Talk with neighbors and find out who may have skills or training that are beneficial in a disaster (first aid, child care, amateur radio, tree removal, small engine repair, heavy equipment operations, wilderness survival, light rescue, carpentry)

Select food items based on your family's preferences. Pick low-salt, water-packed varieties when possible. Examples include:

  • Canned meat -- tuna, chicken, ravioli, chili, stew, Spam®, corned beef, etc.
  • Vegetables -- green beans, corn, peas, beets, baked beans, carrots, etc.
  • Fruit -- pears, applesauce, mandarin oranges, pineapple, etc.

Month 6

Purchase:
__ Quick-energy snacks -- granola bars, raisins, peanut butter, etc.
__ Paper towels -- 6 rolls
__ Facial tissue -- 3 boxes
__ Sunscreen
__ Anti-diarrhea medicine
__ Latex gloves -- 6 pairs, stored in your first aid kits

Activities:
__ Check to see if your stored water has expired and needs replacing (replace every six months if you fill your own; store-bought water will have an expiration date on the container)
__ Put an extra pair of eyeglasses in the storage container
__ Store a roll of quarters with your emergency supplies and locate the pay phone nearest your home
__ Find out about your workplace disaster plans

Month 7

Purchase:
__ Whistle
__ A-B-C- fire extinguisher
__ Canned juice -- 1 large can per person
__ Adult and children’s' vitamins
__A pair of pliers and/or vise grips

Activities:
__ Take a first aid/CPR class
__ Identify neighbors who might need help in an emergency, including those with limited mobility or health problems and children who might be alone
__ Show family members where and how to shut off the utilities

Month 8

Purchase:
__ Boxes of crackers or graham crackers
__ Dry cereal
__ "Child-proof" latches or other fasteners for cabinet doors and drawers
__ Large, heavy-duty garbage bags -- 1 box
__ Camping or utility knife

Activities:
__ Secure shelves, cabinets and drawers to prevent them from falling and/or opening during earthquakes
__ Meet with neighbors to inventory expensive equipment that you could share in case of emergency (chain saws, chippers/shredders, utility trailers, snow blowers, four-wheel-drive vehicles, etc.

Month 9

Purchase:
__ Extra batteries for flashlights, radios and hearing aids, if needed
__ Heavy rope
__ Duct tape
__ Crowbar

Activities:
__ Make a small preparedness kit for your car. Include food, water, blanket, small first aid kit, a list of important phone numbers, and quarters for pay phones
__ Secure your water heater to wall studs, if not already done

Month 10

Purchase:
__ Hammer and assorted nails
__ Screw drivers and assorted wood screws
__ Heavy-duty tarps or sheets of plastic
__ Extra toothbrush and toothpaste for each person

Activities:
__ Make arrangements to have someone help your children if you are at work or away when an emergency occurs
__ Conduct an earthquake drill at home
__ Replace prescription medicines as required by expiration dates

Month 11

Purchase:
__ Package of paper plates
__ Package of napkins
__ Package of plastic eating utensils
__ Package of paper cups
__ Masking tape
__ Kitchen-size garbage bags -- 1 box

Activities:
__ Make arrangements to have someone take care of your pets if you are at work or away when an emergency occurs
__ Exchange work, home and emergency contact numbers with neighbors for use in an emergency
__ Start a Neighborhood Watch program if none exists

Month 12

Purchase:
__ Heavy work gloves
__ Box of disposable dust masks
__ Safety goggles
__ Antiseptic
__ Sewing kit

Activities:
__ Check to see if your stored water has expired and needs replacing (replace every six months if you fill your own; store-bought water will have an expiration date on the container)
__ Check the dates on stored food and replace as needed