There are a variety of first air, survival, and emergency type kits you can prepare for emergencies. But in the event of a tornado you have only minutes or even seconds to make life and death decisions. Having an emergency kit prepared to deal with the aftermath of a tornado can save your life. Experts say it’s good to compile an emergency kit based on the type of scenario you’re most likely to experience in your area. For homeowners on the coast, hurricanes and floods may be their biggest concerns. Other areas – like dry, heavily forested areas, may experience fires. Still other homeowners may worry about earthquakes.
The basic items in any emergency kit remain the same:
- First aid supplies
- Important papers
- Medical supplies
- Matches, candles
- emergency battery/self/solar powered radio.
But additional items may also come in handy for certain kinds of emergencies like tornados. When a tornado hits it leaves total destruction wherever it touches. If you happen to be in a home or structure hit by a tornado you’ll need some very different items than would a flood or fire victim.
Tornadoes often destroy homes, leaving victims trapped under debris, in trees or in cars. They tear up gas lines, flatten homes and flip over cars. Tornadoes often happen later in the day, leaving victims in the dark and without shelter for hours before help can arrive. Having essentials like rope, tools and shelters can make the minutes and hours after a tornado survivalable. Warm, dry blankets or a sleeping bag may be needed to keep a victim from going into shock, or to keep you warm during the wet, cold hours that typically follow a tornado. Emergency crews can’t always get into a devastated area quickly, so you’ll have to provide your own shelter, food, water and medical treatment as well as possibly having to rescue family members or neighbors. Injuries in a tornado are often serious and include broken bones, head trauma and lacerations from flying debris. Your first-aid supplies should be able to handle multiple injuries.
Essential Tornado Emergency Kit Items
- Non-perishable food such as MRE’s (Meals Ready to Eat)
- Non-electric can opener
- Water (1 gallon per person per day for 3 days)
- Shelter in the form of a tent or tarps
- Rain gear
- Emergency power source (generator)
- Emergency blankets or sleeping bag
- Flashlights and extra batteries
- Cell phone and charger
- Chainsaw and fuel
- Shovels, picks, pry bars, wooden poles for removing electric wires
- Signal flares
- Battery, solar or self-powered radio
- Light sticks (shake or break light sticks)
- Air horn or whistles for signaling
- First aid kit that includes splints and bandages and first aid manual
- Medicine (prescription medications, and over-the-counter pain killers, etc.)
- Study shoes or boots
- Cash and credit cards
Larger items such as a chainsaw, shovels and other tools can be stored in a foot locker in a basement or storm shelter. Other items can be put in backpacks or duffel bags that are easy to carry. Limit the weight of your bag to 20 or 30 pounds, something anyone in the family can carry. Items such as a generator may need to be stored in a location less likely to be devastated by a tornado – such as in a shelter or basement.
Disaster Survival Kit Supplies:
Your tornado preparedness supplies should be adequate for at least 72 hours (3 days). Emergency officials and experts state if possible to prepare and plan for 3-4 weeks due to unexpected possibilities of downed power lines and trees blocking road access and many more possible delays from an earthquake or disaster. Here are some survival supplies:
- Emergency Water Storage – Store at least 1 gallon of water per person and pet per day. It’s important to have water purification tablets in case of contaminated water. In addition, it’s a good idea to have 5 Water Purification Tablets per person for your 72 hour kit – each tablet purifies 1 liter of water.
- Emergency Food Storage – Plan at least a 3 day menu of non-perishable food. Select foods that require no refrigeration or cooking, and little or no water. MREs (meals ready-to-eat) from TheSurvivalTabs.com have a 25-year worry-free shelf life with no rotation needed. They are great delicious non-perishable meals that need a little warm water only. We also supply the 2400 calorie food bars in our emergency survival kits and also by the box.
- You can also use canned meats, fruits and vegetables, canned juices and soups, and high energy foods such as peanut butter, granola bars, trail mix and beef jerky. Consider baby food and formula for your infants. Also include food for your pets and other special dietary requirements.
Date all food items and keep an inventory list in the container with your food supplies. Note shelf life or expiration date of each item. Every 6 months, review the list and replace those items whose shelf life has expired.
Emergency First Aid Kit(s) and Critical Medication -. Our emergency first aid kits have a first aid guide, which is vitally important in case of an emergency. Also include an extra supply any critical medication that you could not survive without for a period of 3-4 weeks or more.
- Light and Communication
- Lantern, extra mantles and fuel
- Flashlights with extra bulbs and batteries
- 30 hour emergency candle
- 12 hour green emergency glow sticks
- Waterproof matches
- AM/FM Radio (extra batteries)
- Shelter and Warmth – Include one per person of each of these items.
- Emergency survival blankets or sleeping bags
- Sleeping pads
- Tent (Person tube tent with rope)
- Emergency ponchos with hood
- Emergency Tools
- Tarp (6’x8’ blue tarp)
- 7-1/2” Flat Pry Bar
- Crescent wrench for turning off gas main
- Swiss Army Knife (16 Function Knife)
- Leather palm work gloves
- Rope or bailing wire
- Duct tape
- N95 Respirator Dust Masks – NIOSH approved
- Safety goggles
- Pen and paper
- Sewing kit
- Hygiene and Sanitation
- Toilet bags or big heavy duty trash bags with chemicals such as powdered chlorinated lime to add to sewage to disinfect and keep away insects
- Newspapers to wrap waste, garbage – may also be used for warmth
- Toilet paper
- Hygiene kit (toothbrush, toothpaste, bar of soap, deodorant, and 9 wet wipes)
- Pocket tissue packs
- Feminine supplies
- Air freshener
- Miscellaneous Special Items – There are those special items that if possible you need to include such as:
- Extra set of clothes and heavy shoes
- Watch or clock (battery operated)
- Baby diapers
- Extra eyeglasses and/or contact lenses and care solution
- Non-electric can opener
- Paper cups, plates and plastic utensils
- Portable stove or charcoal and lighter (outdoors only)
- Plastic bags-various sizes, sealable
- Pots (at least two)
- Large plastic trash bags for trash and waste
- ABC fire extinguisher
- A family picture
- Games and books
- Bank account information
- Inventory of valuables
- Insurance policies
Scared or Prepared – Planning makes all the difference in the event of a disaster or an emergency such as a tornado.