What items should you keep in your emergency disaster kit?

In the 2021 outlook released today, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration forecasters predicted a 60% chance of an above-normal hurricane season.

Therefore, it is important Texans prepare and make sure their emergency kit is stocked. 

Most of the items are inexpensive and easy to find, and any one of them could save your life. 


A disaster supplies kit is a collection of basic items your household may need in the event of an emergency.

The Texas Division of Emergency Management recommends your disaster kit have food, water, and supplies to last for at least 72 hours.

FEMA says a basic emergency supply kit could include the following recommended items:

  • Water (one gallon per person per day for several days, for drinking and sanitation)
  • Food (at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food)
  • Battery-powered or hand-crank radio and an NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert
  • Flashlight
  • First aid kit
  • Extra batteries
  • Whistle (to signal for help)
  • Dust mask (to help filter contaminated air)
  • 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 (for food)
  • Local maps
  • Cell phone with chargers and a backup battery



FEMA also suggests adding the following items to your emergency supply kit based on your individual needs:

  • Masks (for everyone ages 2 and above), soap, hand sanitizer, disinfecting wipes to disinfect surfaces
  • Prescription medications
  • Non-prescription medications such as pain relievers, anti-diarrhea medication, antacids or laxatives
  • Prescription eyeglasses and contact lens solution
  • Infant formula, bottles, diapers, wipes and diaper rash cream
  • Pet food and extra water for your pet
  • Cash or traveler's checks
  • Important family documents such as copies of insurance policies, identification and bank account records saved electronically or in a waterproof, portable container
  • Sleeping bag or warm blanket for each person
  • Complete change of clothing appropriate for your climate and sturdy shoes
  • Fire extinguisher
  • Matches in a waterproof container
  • Feminine supplies and personal hygiene items
  • Mess kits, paper cups, plates, paper towels and plastic utensils
  • Paper and pencil
  • Books, games, puzzles or other activities for children

After assembling your kit remember to maintain it so it’s ready when needed. Replace or update expired items as needed.

You should keep your kit in a designated place and have it ready in case you have to leave your home quickly. 

Make sure all family members know where the kit is kept.