Earthquake survival kits are one of those items no one wants to really think about needing. However, being prepared when disaster strikes is essential to the safety of you and your family. When packing a survival kit for an earthquake, consider not only your immediate family, but others who might find themselves joining you out of circumstance. Having extra essential items is never a bad thing, but here are a few items you can leave out.
1 - Cotton Clothing
Cotton does not retain heat when wet, nor is it a good material to wick away moisture. Using polyester or wool as your emergency clothing will ensure that your body can retain heat, ward off hypothermia, and stay comfortable in emergency conditions.
2 - Specialized Flashlights
Having high tech flashlights which require specialized lights, specialized batteries, or any kind of hard to find item are not what you want when resources are scarce. Instead, opt for hand crank flashlights which do not need batteries at all and long lasting LED light bulbs. Stock up on enough flashlights for each person to have their own with an extra light and batteries to be sure you can outlast the danger.
3 - Plug in Items
In all likelihood the power will not be functioning in a major earthquake or it will be unstable. For this reason, items which cannot run on battery or hand crank power should be left out. This does not mean an extra cell phone charger isn’t a good idea if there is space; just don’t rely solely on the power grid.
4 - Age Dependent Toys or Items
Kids tend to grow much faster than we can find time to update earthquake kits. If the clothing you are packing fits them now, it probably won’t when the earthquake hits. If you are packing diapers, also pack some training pants. If you are packing a book to read for your 3 year old, be sure to include one a 5 year old might like as well. Though earthquake kits should be updated every 6 months, we all get busy and you don’t want to be unprepared at the worst possible time.
5 - Candles and Food which Must be Cooked
These items are both out for the same reason: open flame. In an earthquake gas lines can be ruptured and other chemicals can become airborne. Open flames can lead to large scale first aid disasters. Choose items which do not need to be cooked and light which can run on electricity.