Prepare an Emergency Kit

Everyone holds a responsibility to be prepared and one of the most important steps you can take is to prepare your 72-hour Household Emergency Kit, which is a collection of items that provides for your household's essential needs in the event of emergencies, such as storms, floods and cyclones. Keep your kit in a sturdy, easy-to-carry waterproof storage box that's accessible.

Food and water

  • Non-perishable food items,
  • [Food should be ready to eat without heating such as cans of baked beans, tinned fish, canned beans, biscuits, crackers]
  • Bottled water
  • [10 litres per person is recommended for 72 hours or three days]


Medical and sanitation supplies

  • First Aid Kit and manual
  • Essential medications, prescriptions and dosage
  • Toilet paper
  • Toiletry supplies (toothpaste, toothbrush, soap, shampoo)
  • Personal hygiene items



  • Torch with extra batteries (or wind up torch)
  • Battery powered lantern



  • Battery powered radio with extra batteries (or wind up radio)
  • Traditional wired telephone that doesn't require power (for land line)
  • [Many phones now require power to operate, which you won't have]
  • Prepaid phone cards and coins for phone calls


Clothing and footwear

  • Warm jumper, waterproof jacket, hat and gloves for everyone
  • Closed-toed shoes or boots for everyone


Tools and supplies

  • Plastic sheeting and masking tape to strengthen windows
  • Whistle and utility knife
  • Plastic garbage bags and ties
  • Safety glasses and sun glasses
  • Miscellaneous items
  • Specific supplies for infants (nappies and formula), the elderly and people with special needs
  • Spare house and car keys
  • Pet food, water and other pet needs
  • Important documents


Keep original or certified copies of the following documents in your Household Emergency Kit. Scan copies of these documents and save to a USB memory stick or CD/DVD, which you should keep in sealed plastic bags.

  • Insurance documents for your house, contents, cars and valuable items
  • Inventory of valuable household goods
  • Wills and life insurance documents
  • House deeds and mortgage documents
  • Birth and marriage certificates
  • Passports and visa details
  • Stocks and bonds
  • Medicare, pension card details and immunisation records
  • Bank account and credit card details
  • Back-up copies of important computer files
  • A copy of your completed Household Emergency Plan with emergency contact phone numbers


Keep these extra items on hand or included in your kit during the storm and cyclone season :

  • Food and water
  • Three days supply of non-perishable food (plus can opener, cooking gear, plates and utensils)
  • Clean water in sealed containers (10 litres per person is recommended for three days supply)
  • Water purification tablets


Medical and sanitation supplies

  • Extra supplies of medications
  • Prescriptions and details for all medications
  • Extra toiletry and sanitary supplies, sunscreen and insect repellent
  • Spare spectacles


Tools, communications and supplies

  • Wide masking tape for windows
  • Wrench or pliers to turn off all utilities
  • Tent and tarpaulin
  • Woollen and thermal blankets
  • A mobile phone, spare battery and charger


Clothing and footwear

  • Change of clothes for everyone, in stored plastic bags
  • Spare clothing and bedding


Miscellaneous items

  • Extra supplies for infants (extra formula, nappies etc.)
  • Extra supplies for the elderly or people with special needs
  • Spare cash (you may not be able to access electronic bank tellers (ATMs) due to power failures)
  • Pet provisions and information (e.g. vet papers, leash, water and food, collars with identification tag, pet beds, litter pan and scooper, carrier or harness and medication)


In a major emergency, there may be extended interruptions to power and water supplies. The following items are recommended:

  • Barbeque or portable stove with fuel
  • Fully charged batteries for mobile phones
  • Spare batteries for torch and radio
  • Gas or battery-powered refrigerator or Esky