Build an Emergency Kit

Creating a home emergency kit doesn't need to take long. Just follow the basic list below and store your collected supplies in an easy to access location.

  • First-Aid kit
  • Battery-powered or hand-crank radio
  • Flashlight and extra batteries
  • Whistle to signal for help
  • Cellphone with charger
  • Cash in small bills
  • A local map with your family meeting place identified
  • Three-day supply of food and water
  • Garbage bags
  • Dust mask
  • Seasonal clothing and footwear

The Importance of Water

How much is enough?

The general rule is four litres of water per person per day, but there are a few caveats:

  • Children, nursing mothers and sick people may need more
  • If you live in a warm region of B.C., hot temperatures can double water needs
  • Pets need about 30 millilitres of water per kilogram of body weight per day. For example, an average-sized cat or small-sized dog needs at least 1/5 of a litre, or half a cup, daily

How and where do I store my water?

It’s recommended you purchase commercially-bottled water and keep it in its original container in an easily accessible, cool and dark place. Don’t open it until you need it.

Observe the expiration or “best before” dates. Set a reminder in your phone or remember to check the dates when the clocks “spring forward” and “fall back”.

What hidden water sources are available in my home?

It’s easy to locate safe water sources in your home. These include the water in your hot-water tank, pipes and ice cubes. It’s recommended you don’t use water from toilet tanks or bowls, radiators, waterbeds, swimming pools or spas.

Can I purify my own water?

We recommend purchasing commercially-bottled water; however, the Ministry of Health has information on the steps you can take to purify and bottle your own.

What about water filtration devices?

These devices are becoming more and more popular, perhaps because they don’t take up as much room as several litres of bottled water. There are a lot of different options out there – different brands offer many different types, ranging from water bottle-sized to 18-litre containers or larger. If you choose to go this route, it’s still not a bad idea to store some bottled water as well.

Grab-and-go

Don't count on being home when there's an emergency. In addition to having one at home, create grab-and-go bags for your work and vehicles that contain:

  • Food (ready to eat) and water
  • Flashlight and batteries
  • AM/FM radio
  • Medications
  • Seasonal clothing
  • Blanket
  • Cell phone charger
  • Pen and notepad
  • Personal toiletries
  • Small First-Aid kit
  • Extra pair of glasses or contacts
  • Cash in small bills
  • Local map with your family meeting place identified
  • Whistle

Basic Kit Supplies

Help/OK sign

Download this help/ok sign (PDF) and display the appropriate side outward in your window during a disaster.

Emergency Kit Contents (translations)

Share Button