It’s wise to be ready for anything should a natural or man-made disaster strike, and it’s especially important when a baby is involved. Check these items off your list as you create your family’s emergency supply kit, and learn more about what you can do to prepare at ready.gov.
- Water—one gallon per day per person for at least three days. You’ll need it for both drinking and sanitation.
- Food—a three-day supply of nonperishable sustenance.
- Battery-powered radio and NOAA weather radio, which continuously broad- casts weather and postevent information (following earthquakes, oil spills, etc.) directly from the nearest National Weather service office. Don’t forget spare batteries, too.
- Flashlight and, again, extra batteries.
- First aid kit.
- Whistle to signal for help.
- Dust mask to help filter contaminated air and plastic sheeting and duct tape to shelter-in-place.
- Moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties for personal sanitation.
- Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities.
- Manual can opener.
- Local maps.
- Cell phone with chargers, inverter or solar charger.
- Cold-weather essentials—if you’re without heat, you’ll need warm clothes and blankets. Plan on at least one change of clothes and shoes per person.
- Formula—consider purchasing ready-to-feed formula, which doesn’t require a clean water source and often comes packaged in single-use bottles that are ideal when dish- washing isn’t an option.
- Bottles, if you’ll be using condensed or powdered formula.
- Diapers—newborns often go through up to 10 a day; as they grow, eight a day is the norm.
- Baby wipes.
- Diaper rash ointment.
Just keep nursing
Breastfeeding can go a long way to aid your baby in a disaster, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It’s readily available, protects against diseases (like diarrhea and respiratory infections), helps prevent hypothermia and doesn’t require clean drinking water or sterile bottles. As a bonus, the hormones you release while nursing can help alleviate the stress and anxiety that result from the situation.