How To Prepare A First Aid Kit During Severe Weather

Hurricane Irene (File Photo)

We just saw the devastation by Hurricane Harvey and then Monster Irma! It’s not just rain, wind and flooding that leads to a disaster, it’s also earthquakes, landslides and fires.

You just never know when severe weather will strike, you never know when you’ll have to jump in your car and evacuate… or rush down into the basement for a tornado!

  1. Medications – Keep a handwritten list in your wallet. Even better (if you have the time) is to stick the prescription label onto a piece of paper so all your dosing information is shown. I’d also keep the list on your smart phone. When the power goes out, pharmacies can’t access your medication profile on the computer anymore. Your list allows paramedics to give you the correct pills or shots.
  2. Ziploc with Water – Fill a Ziploc bag about 75 percent full with some fresh water, then freeze it. Keep several frozen at all times. If you need to leave in a hurry grab them. While frozen, it can protect insulin, food or liquid antibiotics. As it melts, you’ll have pure water which you can drink in an emergency.
  3. Portable Charger – Buy a portable cell phone charger (aka power bank) and a transistor radio, it can be hand-crank, battery operated, or even solar-powered.
  4. Dishwasher Storage – Your dishwasher is waterproof so if floods are anticipated, store photo albums and documents inside the dishwasher. When the water recedes, they should be perfect.
  5. Loved One List – If a rescuer wants to call your loved one or spouse to assure them of your safety and rescue, having a handwritten “Loved One List” is invaluable. Let’s face it, nobody knows phone numbers by heart anymore.
  6. Children – I lived in Florida for 35 years, and when the hurricanes barreled through, I always made sure that my kids were pleasantly distracted with puzzles, painting, beading or “camping” in the (safer) hallway.
  7. Emergency kit – You can buy some very nice ones on Amazon or Costco, or you can create your own like this:

DIY First Aid Kit

Analgesics like ibuprofen or acetaminophen

Hydrocortisone and antibiotic ointment

A little blanket and a pair of socks

Toothpaste/brushes and deodorant

Small salt shaker to replenish electrolytes

Spare undies if you’re evacuating to a shelter

Eyeglasses or contacts

A whistle to call for help

Spare keys to your house/car

A multi-purpose knife


N95 or N100 mask

Ziplock bags and toilet paper

  1. Map – If you have to drive because of an immediate evacuation, and you can’t use GPS in your car, or your smart phone, then an actual map is a blessing. Just get in the car and drive to safety!