Here are some basic items you'll need to stock your hurricane kit.
Food and drink
• Drinking water: 1 gallon per person per day.
• Nonperishable food supplies: Enough to see you through the first few days. A severe storm can interrupt delivery of fresh food to stores. You need to be ready to feed yourself until stores restock and reopen.
• Comfort foods to relieve stress (cookies, pastries).
• Toilet paper, paper towels, plates and napkins, plastic tableware and drinking cups, wet wipes, plastic wrap, trash bags.
• Two coolers: one for food, one for ice.
• Manual can opener.
Health and safety
• Flashlight and batteries for each person in your household.
• Light sticks.
• First aid kit with bandages, antiseptic, tape, compresses, pain reliever, antidiarrhea medication, antacid.
• Medications for routine illnesses such as colds.
• Liquid soap, hand sanitizer, wet wipes.
• Water purification kit.
• Two-week supply of vitamins, over-the-counter medications and prescription medicines.
• Fire extinguisher.
• Battery-powered clock.
• Infant necessities: medicine, diapers, formula, bottles, wipes.
• Supplies for the elderly or the ill: Depends undergarments, bed pads, medications, special foods.
If you evacuate
• Pillows, blankets, sleeping bags or air mattresses.
• Folding chairs or cots.
• Extra clothing and shoes.
• Personal hygiene items: toothbrush, washcloth, deodorant, etc.
• Food and water.
• Earplugs. Shelters can be noisy, and someone sleeping near you may snore.
• Prescription medications in their original containers. Shelters are not hospitals and do not have access to drugs or medicine. Bring what you need.
• Books, handheld games, cards, toys, needlework, iPod.
• Cleaning supplies: mop, bucket, towels, disinfectant.
• Camera or camcorder to record property and document damage for insurance claims.
• Plastic trash bags.
Be sure to have . . .
• Cash. If the power goes out, ATMs will not work and credit card networks will be down.
• Paperwork: insurance policy, identification, home inventory, medical insurance card.
• Cell phone charger for your car. Also have a land-line phone (one that's wired to the wall, not wireless).
• A full tank of gas.
Times staff writer