Build Your Emergency Supply Kit

Assemble everything you need for a robust emergency kit by buying or collecting a few items each week over the course of three months. Here is the first of three shopping lists to begin the series and help you gather what you need.

Water bottleWEEK 1: Grocery Store

  • 1 gallon water per person.
  • 1 small jar peanut butter.
  • 1 large can juice.
  • 1 can protein (e.g., meat or beans).
  • Hand can opener.
  • 1 permanent marker.
  • Diapers, baby food, bottles, if applicable.
  • Date each food item you buy.
  • Make a family emergency plan. Templates are available for download at

WEEK 2: Hardware and Supplies

  • Hammer, screwdriver, wrench and crowbar.
  • Rope, duct tape, plumber’s tape, cords.
  • 2 crank or battery-powered flashlights.
  • Check house for hazards; secure loose and heavy objects (e.g., TV, shelves) or anything that may tip over during an earthquake.
  • Locate gas and water shutoffs and your electric panel. Make sure you know how to shut off all utilities; attach any necessary tools.

WEEK 3: Grocery Store

  • 1 gallon water per person.
  • 1 can fruit.
  • 2 cans protein (e.g., meat or beans).
  • Personal hygiene products.
  • Establish an out-of-state friend or family member to contact during an emergency.

WEEK 4: Grocery Store

  • 1 gallon water per person.
  • 2 cans fruit and 2 cans vegetables.
  • 2 cans protein (e.g., meat or beans).
  • 2 rolls toilet paper.
  • Toothbrush, toothpaste, and/or denture care.
  • Any special foods (diabetics, etc.).
  • Photograph the contents of your home for insurance purposes. Send the photos to an out-of-town family member or friend.