emergency kit

Store an emergency supply kit in a garage, shed or nearby spot and check it every three months, testing batteries, etc.

At the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, experts said the best defense was to hunker down as much as possible.

Now the fire season is upon Rim Country — and throughout Arizona — forced evacuation from those COVID-19 sanctuaries could become reality.

The ReadyGila.com site on the Gila County Health and Emergency Management website offers guidance about what residents need to have in their “Ready Kits” if forced to evacuate.

Ready Kits should address the needs of three days’ sustenance for all members of the household, as well as pets. Plan also for any dependent relatives, elderly or special-needs neighbors.

The Arizona climate poses special considerations, and seasonal changes can affect what is needed.

Completed Ready Kits should be kept in a waterproof container and can be stored in a garage, shed, neighbor’s house, or other nearby spot. Wherever you choose should be accessible to all family members.

Check your kits every three months around the change of seasons and update them accordingly. Test batteries and replace these at the same time.

Emergency supplies list

• Three-day supply of non-perishable food (dried fruit, canned tuna fish, peanut butter, etc.), can opener

• First aid kit

• Sleeping bag or warm blanket for everyone in your family

• Change of clothes to last three days, including sturdy shoes; consider the weather where you live

• Matches in a waterproof container

• Toothbrush, toothpaste, soap

• Paper plates, plastic cups and utensils, paper towels

• Water — at least a gallon per person, per day

• Battery-powered or hand-cranked radio with extra batteries

• Flashlights with extra batteries

• Cellphone with charger, extra battery and solar charger

• Whistle

• Local maps

• Pet supplies

• Baby supplies

• Books, games or puzzles

Some disasters strike with no warning. Think about the supplies you’ll need the most — they will usually be the hardest to come by.

If a big storm is coming — Fill your car with gas. Fill plastic bags with water and place them in the freezer. Get extra cash out of the bank. Fill prescriptions.

Contact the reporter at tmcquerrey@payson.com

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