… or worse yet, non-existent?

Many families are ill prepared for an emergency. And if you’re caring for an elderly loved one, having an emergency kit at-the-ready is especially crucial. A recent survey found that 60 percent of American families admitted they did not have a family emergency plan.

Seniors and their caretakers are especially urged to prepare now for a sudden emergency. As we all know, disasters can strike quickly and without warning – forcing you to evacuate your neighborhood or be confined to your home.

Start by planning ahead to protect yourself and your aging loved ones (even those who may be younger but have physical or other limitations) in an emergency. And keep in mind that local officials and relief workers may not be able to reach everyone right away.

Your family’s disaster supplies kit should be packed and ready in one place with enough supplies for at least three days: 

  • Store your supplies in one or more easy-to-carry containers, – if possible one with wheels and an ID tag.
  • Label any equipment, such as wheelchairs, canes or walkers, with your name, address and phone number.
  • Basic supplies should include:
    • Water – one gallon per person, per day
    • Canned and dried food
    • Flashlight with extra batteries and bulbs
    • Battery-operated or hand-crank radio
    • First aid kit and manual
    • Medications  
    • Sanitation and personal hygiene items (like toilet paper, plastic garbage bags)
    • Copies of personal documents (medication list and medical information, deed/lease to home, birth certificates and insurance policies)
    • Cell phone with an extra battery and charger              
    • Family and friends’ emergency contact information
    • Cash (ATMs may not be accessible)
    • Emergency blanket
    • Whistle (to attract the attention of emergency personnel)