Grab and Go – Basic Emergency Preparedness

Grab and Go – Basic Emergency Preparedness

More potential threats seem to be abound with some having such a swift blow that there’s no time to think about what you need before you evacuate. Basic emergency preparedness could make a huge difference when it comes to reducing stress and maintaining your health in times of crisis.

Take pause and put together your grab and go protocol so you can spend more time concentrating on care for yourself as well as loved ones when it really means the most.

Think of the Worst and Know What to Do

It could be a powerful storm, flood, violent event, power outage or any other occurrence that forces you to stay where you are or move and move fast. This means possibly being unable to leave your home, temporarily relocating, or being on the run until you find safety. The main thing to remember is how important it is not to panic and to be practically prepared.

Hunkering Down

Sometimes in times of crisis, remaining in your home is the safest choice at that time. Keeping dedicated supplies to remain living can be essential. Here is a quick look list of the basic emergency preparedness you’ll need to maintain indoor living as recommended by New York City’s Emergency Management team:

  • One gallon of drinking water per person per day
  • Nonperishable, ready-to-eat canned foods and manual can opener
  • First-aid kit
  • Light Emitting Diode (LED) flashlights
  • Battery-operated AM/FM radio and extra batteries (look for wind-up models)
  • Whistle
  • Iodine tablets or one quart of unscented bleach (for disinfecting water ONLY if directed to do so by health officials) and eyedropper (for adding bleach to water)
  • Personal hygiene items: soap, feminine hygiene products, toothbrush and toothpaste, etc.
  • Phone that does not rely on electricity
  • Child care supplies or other special care items

These are basic preparedness items that should be tucked away in your home in case of an emergency. Going a step further, many people have benefitted from owning a gas or even solar powered generator. These devices are capable of powering an entire home for several days on one full tank or charge. In addition, dried fruits and nuts free of preservatives and sugar are excellent for fast, easy nutrition.

Grab and Go

Having a bag full of important items can save you time and panic in an unexpected crisis. This is the go bag and it is recommended by every disaster relief organization and security personnel across the board. Choose a sturdy duffel bag size carrier with good pockets for organized storage. The New York City Emergency Management team recommends:

  • Copies of your important documents in a waterproof container
  • Extra set of car and house keys
  • Copies of credit/ATM cards
  • Cash (in small bills)
  • Bottled water and nonperishable food, such as energy or granola bars
  • Light Emitting Diode (LED) flashlights
  • Battery-operated AM/FM radio (look for wind-up models)
  • Extra batteries/chargers
  • Medications each member of your household takes, why they take them, and their dosages
  • First-aid kit
  • Toiletries
  • Notepad and pen
  • Contact and meeting place information for your household
  • Local map

This go bag should apply to all those in your household. That means if you have children or even pets your go bag should contain pertinent items for them as well.

Additional Action

There are a few other tips you may want to use to prepare for an emergency. These are preparations you can make on your own that will surely have those you are saving describe you with words like “hero” more than once.

Evacuation routes – Map out the best possible evacuation routes. It should start in your home with the safest way to escape to how to avoid surrounding obstacles such as roads that flood or may become overcrowded.

Contact Plan – If cell towers and local land line phones are not working you’ll want to designate a meeting place as well as an out of town contact number anyone can call to relay messages.

Alert Yourself – Sign up for local and national emergency alerts by visiting online organizations such as your chamber of commerce, Red Cross and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Shut it Down – If you have time, before you leave your home try to shut and/or unplug as many things as possible to avoid gas, electrical and water damage.

Emergency Ed – Take some courses that may come in handy during an emergency such as CPR or First Aid.

Tools on Hand – Make sure you have one or more fire extinguishers, carbon monoxide and smoke detectors as well as a fireproof, waterproof lock-box.


Basic emergency preparedness could be the best thing you never procrastinated. Stay alert, vigilant and remember, never panic.