What's in your Emergency Kit?

Now that the hurricane season is officially off to a powerful start, I figured it would be a good idea to get off my butt and finally put together an emergency kit, something small, lightweight, and portable, yet substantial enough to help in the event that evacuation is necessary…

Living in New England, thankfully we don’t seem to get too many “natural disasters”, but, to quote the Boy Scouts, it’s best to “Be Prepared”, and besides, i was looking for a way to put my spare knives, flashlights and other stuff to use anyway

I also discovered a nice side benefit of my Emergency Kit (a.k.a. “Bug-Out Bag”, or BOB), my BOB also doubles as a handy pre-made camping kit…

Since my plan in an emergency (Blizzard, Hurricane, Earthquake, Zombie Uprising, Giant Lizard Attack, Tornado, Etc…) is to Shelter In Place, the Emergency Kit is focused more on water/food/tools/firestarting/defense than shelter and clothing, the house (2 story colonial with attic and basement) supplies more than sufficient shelter, blankets, clothing, etc…

I’ve also found that for some strange reason, I find building BOB’s fun, maybe it’s because I look at them as ready-to-go camping kits or something, and i like to camp

anyway, the current BOB is based off my Ogio Metro laptop computer backpack, as it’s a nice balance of compact size and decent storage space

So, here we go;

Left pocket;
KaBar USMC knife
Spyderco Pacific Salt PE
Victorinox SwissTool multitool

Top “iPod” pocket;
currently empty

Right top pocket;
Grundig 2AA AM/FM/Shortwave radio

Right bottom pocket;
Batteries (15 CR123a’s, 10 AA’s, 12 AAA’s)

Bottom pocket;
Triage/first-aid kit
“Pocket Survival Kit” with Sparklite and tinder, signalling mirror, whistle and other stuff

Front pocket;
Gerber LED headlamp (white, red, and green LED’s)
MSR MicroWorks water filter
Steri-Pen UV water purifier
Inova X5
SureFire L1 Lumamax (gen 2 Luxeon)
Peak LED Solutions Kilimanjaro 1 LED

Main pocket;
MSR Dromedary 10 liter water bag (empty and folded)
Freeze-dried meals (3 packets, misc.)
Energy bars and gels stored in Nalgene widemouth 32 oz bottle
Fire-Kit** stored in another Nalgene 32 oz bottle
empty Nalgene 32 oz widemouth for water
100 feet of Paracord

Laptop pocket;
rain poncho (folded)
leather work gloves
3 3 mil trash bags

It’s still a work in progress, and changes as I find things that work/don’t work better, It’s actually pretty fun building the kit

So, anyone else have an Emergency/Lets Go Camping kit?
**fire kit consists of;
Coghlans Fire-Starter tinder sticks
Swedish FireSteel
Magnesium brick fire starter
a matchcase filled with Strike Anywhere matches
Fresnel Lens
Pressurized Butane lighter
a couple basic matchbooks

I need to get a kit ready – it is on my things to do list. When I do, it will include, in addition to variants on many things you have listed:

money (local currency and dollars)
copies of passports for all family members
insurance information
important phone numbers
credit card info

If you are part of a family, you are also supposed to establish a meeting point/plan for “what does each family member do if they cannot reach the others.”

Try here.

Oops, forgot the cell-phone pocket, which contains a SureFire 6P with Cree LED dropin and a Sabre pepper spray kubaton

added in some beef jerky to the food pocket, and started adding cash, good idea to stock the BOB with paper currency, now i just need to add one of those reflective tarp wraps (like a Space Blanket but more durable), and maybe a heavy-duty tarp

I also found my old Boy Scouts frame pack, still in decent shape, it has more bulk storage space than the Ogio, but fewer pockets, the Ogio is more organized, but the scoutpack is more spacious…

hmm, wonder if the Ogio would fit in the main pocket of the frame pack, that way i’d have the best of both worlds…

Having gone through this (Katrina), the reality is pretty boring. All the papers and photos you can carry and your credit cards. Boring though it is, as long as you are within reach of Walmart you won’t lack for anything.

Now I know several people who spent days in strange hotels eating their emergency rations. I can’t tell you why, but they did.

Obviously this assumes you are evacuating (the premise of the OP). If you stay, that is a different story. Food isn’t a problem, the emergency services are quite capable of bringing in lots of MREs. Gas for your car-thats a problem.

Around here (gulf coast) the lesson learned for the local government is: hospitals, police+fire, then banks (for cash), and grocery stores. It is really surprising how fast things we are used to grind to a halt once all the cash is gone. It isn’t only that people want/need banks and groceries, it is that they CAN be brought back quickly. A grocery store can be restocked quickly-after all they do it constantly.