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I’ve always been a safety kind of guy. Ever since I moved from Connecticut to Southern California to go to college, I’ve made sure to stay on top of safety information and made sure that I had emergency supplies on hand. Here in California, there’s always the threat of earthquakes, wildfires and mudslides. Then I had kids and then came a global pandemic, which kicked my emergency preparedness up a few notches. It’s not really fun to think about these things but I think it’s better to get prepared so you don’t have to think about them. It will give you some peace of mind and you’ll hopefully feel calmer in the event of an emergency. Here are 10 items I have in case there’s an emergency, whether I’m traveling or at home.

Emergency Kit for the Car
I’ve always kept a basic emergency kit in my car, just in case I’m driving and there’s a massive earthquake or my car breaks down in the middle of nowhere. This 2-person, 3-day backpack comes with food, water, emergency blankets, a first-aid kit and two safety light sticks. As part of my car’s emergency safety kit, I also have Fix-A-Flat to quickly repair flat tires.

RELATED: What to Do When You Face a Travel Emergency

Car Safety Hammer Emergency Escape Tool with Seat Belt Cutter
I also keep this small but useful life-saving device in the side compartment of my car door. It allows you to break the car window and cut the seatbelt if, God forbid, you get trapped inside your car or somehow submerged under water.

Go-Bag
Inside the house, I keep a VLES Go-Bag, which is a heavy-duty backpack filled with emergency, first-aid and personal supplies, as well as a hydration kit. Read more about it here.

Escape Ladder
Also inside the house, we have a two-story fire escape ladder with anti-slip rungs. So if there’s a fire we can escape from the second floor. This should go without saying, but we also have a fire extinguisher in our kitchen.

Pocket Escape Smoke Hood
For travel, I keep a pocket smoke escape hood in my carry-on. (God forbid there’s ever a fire but my family and I were in a hotel fire when I was a teenager and I wish we’d had these.) They’re made of NASA-grade DuPont Kapton Polyamide Film and can resist high temperatures up to 450 degrees C so you can escape a burning building.

TIP: Always leave your clothes, shoes and wallet ready to go by the door in case you need to jump up out of bed and run. This has happened to me numerous times, including during the aforementioned hotel fire in Puerto Rico when I was 16, a hotel smoke alarm going off in Toronto, a tornado warning in Dallas and an earthquake in Tokyo.

LifeStraw to Filter Water
It’s always smart to carry a LifeStraw water filter since it filters up to 1,000 gallons (4,000 liters) of contaminated water without iodine, chlorine or other chemicals. It doesn’t require batteries and has no moving parts. One of my travel friends uses this wherever he goes in the world. He claims he’s never drunk bottled water before.

Duct Tape
Every seasoned traveler will laugh at this one because they all know to keep duct tape in their carry-on bag. It can be used for virtually everything, from taping curtains shut in your hotel room to repairing luggage. Heck, some people have even used it to hold their car bumper on after an accident.

Portable Power Station
I keep a Jackery Explorer Portable Power Station in the garage so I can quickly pop it in the car if needed or we can use it to charge our devices at home if the power goes out.

Portable Solar Panel Power Generator
This product was just sent to us by the PR team at Generark because of the high probability of the electricity going out, due to the risk of wildfires caused by climate change. Generark recently launched a couple of emergency power products, the HomePower ONE and the SolarPower ONE.

The HomePower One offers up to 7 days of power supply to your crucial devices and home appliances on a single charge and can be charged with the SolarPower ONE solar panel power generator.

The SolarPower ONE is an efficient portable solar panel power generator that provides eco-friendly recharging for your HomePower ONE backup battery in any emergency situation. It provides a continual emergency power supply to enable your family to overcome any disasters and accidents.

I actually have a lot more products to recommend but this should be a good start for anyone who wants to get serious about being prepared for an emergency situation. Let me know if you think something should be added to the list!

Johnny Jet
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4 Comments On "10 Items I Have in Case of Emergency"
  1. Greg Chinn|

    Cell phone+charger, hard cash for 3 days, emergency phone numbers on cell, your go-bag should have shoes and heavy clothing – dry rations for the family, what happens to the pets (food and cages), do you have a contact out of town to let everyone know you are ok (DON’T DEPEND ON LOCAL CELL TOWERS AS EVERYONE WILL BE CALLING OUT LOCALLY), emerg apps on phone (flashlight, 1st aid info, medical info, radio), a mtg place for the rest of the family if separated when not home (how much gear is in the car if not at home) – a Northridge survivor

    1. Johnny Jet
      Johnny Jet|

      Good tips!

  2. Kenya F|

    Thank you so much for this list! This will help me to put one together.

  3. Susan McKee|

    I had to laugh. I did use my duct tape on a loose bumper on a rental car in Italy.

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