With so much to worry about when a hurricane is headed your way —especially one the magnitude of Hurricane Irma — it's easy to imagine that people probably become overwhelmed when trying to think of all the supplies they are going to need to weather the storm. Which is why this hurricane preparedness checklist is exactly what you need if you are facing a life-threatening storm.
Twitter user Rodnicka tweeted a photo of a comprehensive hurricane preparedness checklist on Tuesday, covering everything from food to pet needs. It's unclear who created the checklist, with Rodnicka even saying in her tweet, "Thank you to whoever created this checklist. I was lost." But regardless of origin, it's clear that this document fills a crucial need for people in Irma's path; it gives them a starting point for how to prepare for the catastrophic storm.
The checklist breaks supplies down into categories like water, ice, food, health essentials, and pet needs. What's most striking is the quantity of the supplies that are needed. Most people probably know that they are going to need water and food and batteries if they become stranded or without power during the storm. But this checklist tells people to gather enough supplies to be able to last two weeks without a restock. That includes water for drinking and for cooking and bathing, prescription pills, and canned food.
This checklist recommends people keep one gallon of water per person per day for 14 days for drinking, and an additional gallon per person per day for cooking and personal hygiene. Water supplies can become contaminated and unsafe to consume during a hurricane. It also suggest freezing plastic bags and bottles filled with water to create ice packs. For food, non-perishable items are key for when the power goes out.
Some items like flashlights and lanterns that run on batteries or even solar power, are probably on the front of people's minds. But others on the list are things that could be easily looked over, but will make life easier during the storm. Things like paper plates and cups, disposable silverware and paper towels, since washing dishes would be a waste of your water supply. A can opener is also on the list, which is going to become a necessary tool when you go to dig into the two weeks of canned food you have stocked. A waterproof container or bags to store your important documents will also come in handy if you are trapped in floodwaters. The list also mentions two weeks worth of prescription pills, since stores may be closed for weeks, or may not be able to receive shipments of medicine.
Others on Twitter replied to the tweet with suggestions of their own, such as plenty of cash in small bills, since ATMs will probably be down, a sharp knife or multi-tool, and a gallon buckets to use as a makeshift toilet if the plumbing fails.
But some of these items take time to acquire, so the message for people in Irma's path is to start preparations for the storm far in advance, and get a move on this shopping list immediately.