The extreme, cold temperatures associated with winter weather such as ice and snow storms make staying warm and safe a challenge. Here is how to create a winter survival kit for your home to help you and your family survive the cold grasp of winter.

The Essentials:

  • Food:  Food that requires no cooking or refrigeration such as bread, crackers, cereal, canned foods, and dried fruits. Remember baby food and formula if you have young children.

  • Water:  In case water pipes freeze or rupture, keep a supply of tap water or purchase bottled water. The recommended amount of water to keep is 5 gallons per person.

  • Medicines:  Roads may be inaccessible for several days due to a winter storm.  Make sure to order or refill any prescriptions that family members may need.

  • Identification:  Make sure to keep forms of identification with you such as social security card, passport, photo ID, and driver’s license. In addition, make sure to have bank account information and insurance policies. 

Emergency Materials:

  • Alternate methods to heat your home:

               - Dry firewood for a fireplace or wood stove

               - Kerosene for a kerosene heater

               - Furnace fuel (coal, propane, or oil)

               - Electric space heater with automatic shut-off switch and non-glowing elements

  • Blankets

  • Matches

  • First aid kit and instruction manual

  • Multipurpose, dry-chemical fire extinguisher

  • Flashlight

  • Battery-powered radio, clock/watch

  • Extra batteries

  • Shovel

  • Rock salt

  • Non-electric can opener

When creating a winter survival kit for your home, take into consideration factors that are specific to your home and family.  For instance, if your home is isolated or on the outskirts of a residential area, making it more difficult for help to reach you, make sure to stock additional amounts of food, water, and medicine. Listening to weather forecasts regularly can provide you with several days notice to allow you to check emergency materials and to stock-up on essential supplies.