Go Bag Tips

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This tip encourages you to work on our “Go Bags” -- small backpacks or bags (e.g., a duffle bag) that are filled with crucial supplies and that you and your family members can grab in case of an earthquake.

1.       Each family member should have a go bag, even very young children. Keep your go bags in a place that will be easily accessible in case of an earthquake, such as under each family member’s bed, in a front hall closet, or in a secure container in your garage or outbuilding.

2.       At least one of the bags should include:

o    Flashlight

o    Extra batteries

o    Portable radio

o    First Aid kit and manual

o    Whistle

o    Lighter/ waterproof matches

o    Portable charger for phone

o    Pet food & medications

o    Pet vaccination records

o    Small pet water bowl

o    Jack knife

o    Tarp

o    Toilet paper

o    Dust masks

o    Anti-bacterial wipes

o    Pad of paper and pens/pencils (for leaving notes)

o    Solar or car charger for smartphones

3.       Go bags for each family member should include: 


o    Water 

o    Food (such as power bars and nuts)

o    Extra set of clothing (including a sweatshirt or jacket)

o    Work gloves

o    Copies of ID (license, passport) and other documents (insurance cards)

o    Hygiene items (toothpaste, toothbrush, soap, sunscreen, sanitary products)

o    Contact list

o    Small amount of cash (in case ATMs and store registers aren’t working)

o    Diapers and baby food (if appropriate)

o    Medication, contact lenses, glasses as needed by each family member


1.       To save money, consider using old school or sports backpacks that your children are no longer using or are available at secondhand stores.

2.       It is possible to buy pre-packed emergency survival kits that contain water, snacks, flashlights, first aid, and other crucial supplies. If you buy one (or more) of these kits, remember that you will still need to pack personal items, such as clothing, shoes, and medication for each family member (including pets).Note: Keep a pair of sturdy shoes near your bed so that you can protect your feet from sharp objects (like glass) in the event of an earthquake.