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The Importance of Having a Family Emergency Plan and Checklist

Updated on June 30, 2012

After going through a few natural disasters and some research I have complied a bare bones list that every household should have on hand, No matter if you are prepping for the zombie apocalypse, a winter blizzard or anything in between.

On the top of the list is to just have a plan. This means that every family member in the house should know where a safe place to meet is, and where the emergency supplies are kept. The plan is where it all starts; from there you will need a Shelter (Basement room, Tent, Expedition Trailer, or an RV), 3 to 5 days of long term storage food per person, and 2 gallons of water per person per day. Remember these are the bare bones basics!!

Think, what would you do if there was a blizzard that dropped 3 feet of snow and then the power went out? How long can you survive at home?

Obviously your list will be suited for your family, situation, climate and the like. A lot of my families list doubles as our family camping list. The way I started to think what we would need is to imagine that we were camping for 5 days and had no access to fresh water or food (the stores will be cleared out in hours). After thinking of it this way, I already had a lot of the supplies needed. See my other article with the Printable Family Camping Checklist to start.

From the camping list I needed to just gather a few more items and organize it all into a safe place. I chose and dedicated a corner of the garage (would be the basement, but don’t have them in Arizona) to be the emergency supply corner. I started by taking all the family’s camping supplies and organized it into 2 Rubbermaid Roughneck tubs. The reason I like the Rubbermaid tub idea is simple. They stack nice and neatly, are easily labeled, and with the lids secured down they are fairly water and rodent resistant. In all reality I have picked up much of our camping – Emergency supplies at second-hand stores (i.e. Goodwill) for the pure fact that we only use it for camping or in an emergency. I really do not need name brand anything to survive. I understand that not everyone is an outdoorsy type, Some may live in the Downtown of a metropolis or in a farming community but even with just the basics of food and water you can survive.

I am not saying that everyone needs a bunker with months of food, but everyone does need a plan in-case of an emergency and the ability to be safe and secure. I pray that my family never needs to use the survival supplies but I know that if and when a disaster or the like happens my family will be safe and secure. I am currently working on another article that goes much further in depth into a checklist for a family of 4 for disaster preparedness. If you have any comments, suggestions, or ideas that should be included, please post them below. Thanks again for reading Desert Armor – Stay Safe –

In depth Checklist

· Roasting sticks X4

· Cast Iron Pan

· Dish towel

· Wash Basin

· Cutting Board

· Aluminum foil

· Plates X8

· Cups X4

· Bowls X4

· Utensil sets X4

· Can Opener

· Tongs

· Spatula

· Wooden spoon

· Mixing bowl

· Small Pot

· Table Cloth

· Table Cloth Weights

· Kitchen Knife

· Gallon Zip-top baggies


· Matches (1 box in a zip top)

· Deck of cards

· Thick Work gloves

· Lantern (Extra batteries)

· Mallet – Light weight

· Rope

· Para-cord

· Folding shovel

· Hatchet

· Multi Screwdriver

· 1st Aid Kit

· Emergency Blankets X2

· Ponchos X4

· Pot Holder

· Dust Pan and Brush

· Griddle

· Sponge

· Dish Soap

· Stove and fuel

· Flashlights and extra batteries

· Trash bags

· FRS Radios

· Handheld GPS

· Toilet paper

· Paper towels

· Bug Spray

· Frisbee

· Coffee Percolator

· Tent

· Sleeping bags per person

· Pillows

· Clothing

· Medications

· Important family documents (passports, IDs) in a Zip top bag for water resistance.

· Bible – or whatever Religious book of your choosing – Everyone will need Faith at sometime

· Toilet paper

· Water purification system (either tablets or a filter)

· Fishing gear – a rod and reel and small amount of tackle

· (For experience individuals)(all with 1000 rounds or more)

o Handgun for family protection

o 20 or 12 gauge shotgun for game

o .22 cal rifle for small game (very easy to learn to shoot, inexpensive to own and operate)

· CPR and 1st aid classes

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