In the event you have to leave your home on a moment's notice, emergency preparedness officials recommend taking the following items with you. If feasible, they suggest assembling a bag of these items that sits ready -- just in case it is needed. In general, you should be prepared to be away from home for at least 72 hours.
What to take
Important papers and valuables
Drivers license/identification cards
Prescription glasses and dentures
Personal toilet articles and sanitary needs
Sleeping bag or blankets
Foods to accommodate special dietary needs
Baby food, diapers, etc.
Checkbook, credit cards, cash
Additional items to take if time permits
Flashlight and extra batteries
Portable radio and extra batteries
Change of clothing for each person
Food: nonperishable, ready to eat
Water: one gallon per person
Reading material/recreational items
First aid kit
Identify in advance any important, personal items you want to take if evacuated (family photos, heirlooms). Consolidate into one packet if practical.
For a more detailed list, visit the Red Cross Web page for disaster preparation.
Or the Coconino County's disaster preparation web page.
In case of emergency evacuation, residents will be expected to use personal vehicles. Families and neighbors should plan ahead to transport individuals with special needs, children, pets, livestock or those without transportation. When school is in session, transportation of school children will be conducted by local school districts.
Plan for your pets
Planning for care of pets and livestock should be included with the family evacuation plans. An animal's best protection is to be with the owner, but this is not always possible. The American Humane Society and the American Red Cross offer the following tips to help make sure pets and their owners stay together during an emergency, or at least increase the odds of a happy reunion when a disaster subsides.
- Provide tags and collars for your pets to wear at all times, even for inside pets.
- Keep water and food for three days minimum in case you can't leave home, or in case you need to take it with you.
- Keep transportable crates for each pet readily accessible, not in hard-to-reach locations or in storage. They should be large enough for your pet to stand in and turn around.
- Make a list of phone numbers and addresses of pet-friendly hotels in outlying areas or friends that will take you and your pets in case of emergency.
- Keep vaccinations current.
- Place your contact information, including the name of an out-of-state contact, on your pets' ID tags, microchip registrations and licenses.
- Prepare an emergency kit of leashes, collars, extra ID tags, water, food, medications, health records, photos to prove ownership, your veterinarian contact information and an authorization to treat your pets.
- Prepare a list of boarding facilities and veterinarians who could shelter animals in an emergency; include 24-hour phone numbers.
- Bring all pets into the house after a warning is issued so you won't have to search for them if you have to evacuate.
Set up a rendezvous and arrange communication
Prepare a family communications plan. Make a list to carry in your wallet, purse or backpack that includes:
- Designated meeting place(s)
- Names and contact numbers of a couple out-of-town relatives or friends as emergency contacts who all family members can call to exchange information
- Cell phone numbers of family and friends
- Determine who will transport family members who are unable to drive or who do not have a vehicle
- A designated spot at which to meet school children
If you have a cell phone:
- Keep the battery charged
- Keep a back-up cellular phone battery fully charged for emergencies only, and store it in a dry, accessible spot
- Buy a car charger and keep it in the car
- Send text messages on your cell phone. It conserves battery power, keeps the network free for emergency calls and will queue up on the network and be sent as soon as the network is available.
- If possible, have calls to your land line forwarded to your cell phone.
- Preprogram important numbers into your phone, such as insurance and health care numbers.