Build an Emergency Kit

One of the easiest things to do to prepare for an emergency is to assemble an emergency kit ahead of time.  A typical kit should contain enough food, water, and other important supplies to last for at least 72 hours.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) offers excellent guidance on building a kit and coping with an emergency that may disrupt services such as electricity, water, gas, internet, and telephone.

FEMA’s Build a Kit site

If you would like assistance building a kit for your home, office, and car or you have any questions, contact us at

Typical Kit Contents

When you’re ready to build your personal preparedness kit, here are some essential items to include:

  • Water – one gallon of water per person per day for at least three days
  • Food – at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food
  • Battery-powered or hand crank radio and a NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert
  • Flashlight
  • First aid kit
  • Extra batteries
  • Whistle (to signal for help)
  • Moist towelettes, garbage bags, and plastic ties for personal sanitation
  • Manual can opener for food
  • Cash to last for all members of your family for several days for gas, food, and supplies
  • Printouts of the MIT campus map, City of Cambridge map, and a map of the area where you live.
  • Copies of important personal documents (ex: driver’s license, passport, insurance policies, etc.) stored in a waterproof, portable container