Picture this: A local emergency of some sort has emergency personnel knocking on your door telling you that you have 5 minutes to evacuate your house (fire, gas leak, railroad collision, earthquake). What will you grab in those 5 minutes? Hopefully, you’ll get your children and your 72-hour emergency kit (and then whatever else you think you have time to grab and can carry).
The idea of creating kits that keep your family alive until help arrives, until you find support, or until you can return home, can seem daunting. It feels like there is so much to make sure you have, so much to do, so much to buy, and if you forget just one thing, you’re doomed.
Don’t think about it that way. Break it down into individual pieces. Most of the things you need you probably already have at home. The remaining things you’ll need are not expensive but are actually easy to get and easy to use. Think about it more like planning for a camping trip, but with much less stuff!
What Is a 72-Hour Emergency Kit? Why Do You Need One?
What is a 72-hour kit? It is a kit (sometimes referred to as a Go Bag) in a backpack or tote that allows you to live away from your home for up to 3-4 days in an emergency. It is different from a Bug Out Bag (BOB) as a B.O.B. is meant for the possibility of permanently living away from home.
Your 72-hour kit is intended to allow you to escape an immediate threat, live for 3 (or 4 if you stretch it) days without relying on authorities or going back home (though sometimes, home won’t be an option if it is bad enough and that BOB will be a blessing).