NORMAN — Q: My friend lost her home in the recent tornado. When we were talking, she said to me, “I didn’t know when I left this morning that I should have prepared to be homeless.” That statement made me think about having an emergency supply kit with me at all times. Is there a resource where I can find a list of the things I should keep?
A: I am so sorry about your friend and the many others who lost their homes. This is a very important question as in natural disasters such as this, people are suddenly left with not even the basics to get by for a few days let alone an extended amount of time. In researching this, I did come across multiple resources with lists as extensive as you choose to get based on the nature of the disaster. Although I always keep such a kit in my car during the winter, I had not considered keeping one all year round. The most concise resource I found is ready.gov, which is developed by FEMA.
For this discussion and with keeping in mind how quickly people had to find shelter, I researched basic lists of kits which could be carried and which would get you by about 72 hours. For those who have tornado shelters, this is a good resource center for what kinds of items to be stored in the shelter.
· Keep a backpack for each member of the household in an area that it is easily found and able to be grabbed at a moment’s notice. Have an extra pack for each adult, if possible.
· Keep a plastic tote in vehicles in case you are not home when the disaster strikes or if you are able to leave in your vehicle.
Some suggested items to put in backpacks (plan for 3 days):