Time to Get That Earthquake Kit Ready!
Why? This morning a 3.5-magnitude earthquake hit north of Piedmont. Two days ago, on Wednesday morning, an earthquake hit in almost the exact same area.
And on this day 25 years ago, in 1994, the Northridge earthquake in L.A. happened, which killed dozens and resulted in $25 billion in damages.
Photo: Business Insider
Photo of a concrete parking structure that caved into itself during the earthquake. Courtesy of KPCC.
What happened in Northridge will happen here (again) only much, much bigger. And sooner than we all expect, probably. Which is why today, not tomorrow, is the ideal time to get our emergency earthquake kits ready – because after the dust settles and you’ve survived, you and others not ready with your food, water, blankets, flashlights, first-aid kits and supplies, panic will ensue.
Already have a kit? Update it with newly suggested items. Most of the stuff you need you might already have at home, too.
Experts recommend people to be self-sufficient for at least three days. Practical-minded people says, three weeks. After a major disaster the things we normally don’t think of — running water, refrigeration, and internet connectivity— may be unavailable for days or weeks.
Store your household disaster kit in an easily accessible location. Larger contents can go inside a watertight container (or a large plastic garbage can with a lid and wheels).
Photo: The Prepared
SF 72 has plenty of information as to what you should include in your kit.
Your basic emergency kit should include these essentials:
- Water – one gallon per person per day
- Food – nonperishable, ready to eat, or requiring minimal water
- Manual can opener and other cooking supplies
- First Aid kit and instructions
- Plates, utensils and other feeding supplies
- Flashlight with extra batteries
- Fire extinguisher
- Water and food for your pet
- Pet carrier
Useful items to have:
- A copy of important documents and phone numbers
- Warm clothes and rain gear for each family member
- Sturdy shoes
- Heavy work gloves
- Unscented liquid household bleach and an eyedropper for water purification
- Personal hygiene items like toilet paper, feminine supplies, hand sanitizer, and soap
- Plastic sheeting, duct tape, and utility knife to cover broken windows
- Tools such as a crowbar, hammer, nails, staple gun, adjustable wrench and bungee cords
- Blanket or sleeping bag
- Large heavy duty plastic bags and a plastic bucket for waste and sanitation
- Cellphone charger (batter or car plug-in
One recommended part of your disaster kit is a go-bag, something to carry on your body if needed. Put the following items together in a backpack or another easy to carry container in case you must evacuate quickly. 72Hours suggests preparing one go-bag for each family member.
Suggested items include:
- Radio – battery operated
- Dust mask
- Pocket knife
- Emergency cash in small denominations
- Sturdy shoes, a change of clothes, and a warm hat
- Some water and food
- Photos of family members and pets for re-identification purposes
- List of emergency point-of -contact phone numbers
- List of allergies to any drug (especially antibiotics) or food
- Copy of health insurance and identification cards
- First aid supplies
- Toothbrush and toothpaste
- Extra keys to your house and vehicle
- Any special-needs items for children, seniors or people with disabilities. Don’t forget to make a Go-bag for your pets.
Be sure to make a plan with friends and/or family.
- Have a designated relative/family member/trusted person who lives outside of the city or State to be the contact person writing down and relaying messages to all the family members calling.
- Make sure everyone in your family has memorized the designated contact person’s phone number.
- Agree on a convenient and safe meeting place for all family members to congregate and meet after an earthquake – a nearby park with an open field is a good one, in case your home or neighborhood is deemed off-limits after an earthquake.