5 Things to Include in Your Emergency Kit

Written By Jeff Hindenach
Last updated November 11, 2017

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Money Saving Tips
January 27, 2016

Simple. Thrifty. Living.

Emergencies can strike any time. Having an emergency kit with all the essential items is not only convenient, but can save your life or the lives of loved ones. Include these five emergency must-haves in your kit.

Many emergencies can leave you cut off from a food source, so you want to have at least three days worth of food per person in your kit. The food should be ready to eat and not require any cooking or refrigeration. Consider foods such as granola, canned goods, beef jerky and chocolate bars. You can also get dehydrated food where all you have to do is add water.

Water is one of the most important items in your kit, and you should be well-stocked with this vital resource. While you should have plenty of bottled water, the store might eventually run out, so you should also have a potable water purification device that can filter untreated water, which may be contaminated.

When you or a loved one is injured or sick, you want to ensure you have the right medical supplies to provide basic treatment, such as stemming blood from a wound, preventing infection and medicating a fever. Consider these essentials for your first aid kit:

  • Band-Aids and bandages
  • Gauze
  • Medical tape
  • Surgical gloves
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Bicarbonate of soda
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Medical scissors
  • Medication to reduce pain and fever, such as aspirin and ibuprofen
  • Suture thread with needle kit
  • Potassium iodide
  • Thermometer
  • Tourniquet kit
  • First aid instruction booklet, with directions for CPR and other life-saving information

If you take prescription medication, it’s also a good idea to have an emergency supply available.

Keeping warm and dry in an emergency is of paramount importance. A space blanket won’t be as good as your own bed, but it helps you keep insulated and dry in the case of an emergency. You should also have a backpack with warm clothing, extra-thick socks and some waterproof gear.

Many emergencies can lead to a power loss. Your radio can provide vital information about where to find shelter, roads to avoid and regular status updates. To avoid running out of power, purchase a hand-cranking radio, which enables you to generate the power to run a radio.

You should also purchase a hand-cranking LED flashlight, which is the only way to be sure you’ll have a source of light when batteries go dead.

Hopefully, you will never experience an emergency situation, but with this kit, you’ll be prepared.

About the Author

Jeff Hindenach

Jeff Hindenach is the co-founder of Simple. Thrifty. Living. He graduated from Bowling Green State University with a Bachelor's Degree in Journalism. He has a long history of financial journalism, with a background writing for newspapers such as the San Jose Mercury News and San Francisco Examiner, as well as writing on personal finance for The Huffington Post, New York Times, Business Insider, CNBC, Newsday and The Street. He believes in giving readers the tools they need to get out of debt.

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