What Emergency Supplies Should I Have On Hand In Case Of A Wildfire?

what emergency supplies should i have on hand in case of a wildfire 2

When it comes to wildfire preparedness, it’s crucial to have the right emergency supplies at your fingertips. From essential tools to life-saving equipment, being well-prepared can make all the difference in a crisis. In this article, we’ll explore the must-have items you need to have on hand in case of a wildfire, ensuring you’re equipped to protect yourself, your loved ones, and your property. So, let’s jump right in and discover the essential supplies that will help you stay safe during this unpredictable natural disaster.

What Emergency Supplies Should I Have On Hand In Case Of A Wildfire?

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Essential Items for Survival


Water is one of the most crucial items for survival in any emergency situation, especially during a wildfire. In the event of a wildfire, water sources may become contaminated or damaged, making it essential to have an adequate supply on hand. It is recommended to store at least one gallon of water per person per day for a minimum of three days. This water can be used for drinking, cooking, and personal hygiene needs. It is important to regularly check and replace stored water to ensure its freshness.


Having an ample supply of non-perishable food items is vital for surviving a wildfire emergency. It is recommended to have enough food to sustain your entire household for at least three days. Choose foods that require no refrigeration, cooking, or special preparation. Canned goods, dry goods such as rice and pasta, nuts, and energy bars are all good options to consider. Don’t forget to include a manual can opener in your emergency kit to access canned foods.

Medical Supplies

During a wildfire, access to medical facilities may be limited, so it is crucial to have essential medical supplies readily available. Your emergency kit should include items such as adhesive bandages, gauze pads, antiseptic solution, pain relievers, and any prescription medications needed by members of your household. In addition, it is important to have a first aid manual that provides guidance on how to treat common injuries and ailments.

Personal Hygiene Products

Maintaining proper personal hygiene is essential, even in emergency situations. Include personal hygiene products such as toothbrushes, toothpaste, soap, hand sanitizer, and menstrual hygiene products in your emergency kit. These items will help ensure cleanliness and reduce the risk of infections or illnesses.

Important Documents

In the event of a wildfire evacuation, having important documents readily available is vital. Gather and store important documents such as identification papers, passports, insurance policies, medical records, and proof of address in a waterproof bag or container. It is also advisable to make copies of these documents and store them digitally or off-site for extra protection.

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Protective Gear

N95 Respirator Masks

During a wildfire, the air quality can be severely compromised due to smoke and debris. N95 respirator masks can help protect your respiratory system from harmful particles in the air. These masks are designed to filter out at least 95% of airborne particles, including ash and smoke. Make sure to have an adequate supply of masks for every member of your household, and replace them regularly to ensure their effectiveness.


Protecting your eyes from smoke, ash, and other airborne particles is crucial during a wildfire. Goggles or safety glasses can shield your eyes from irritants, reducing the risk of eye injuries and respiratory issues. Opt for goggles that provide a snug fit and have clear lenses to maintain good visibility, even in smoky conditions.


Having a pair of sturdy gloves is essential for protecting your hands during a wildfire. Fire-resistant gloves or leather work gloves can provide protection from heat, debris, and sharp objects. These gloves will not only safeguard your hands but also allow you to handle objects safely during an emergency situation.

Long-sleeved Shirts and Pants

Wearing long-sleeved shirts and pants made from natural fibers like cotton can provide an added layer of protection during a wildfire. These clothing items can shield your skin from sparks, embers, and hot surfaces, reducing the risk of burns and injuries. Avoid wearing synthetic materials that can melt onto your skin when exposed to extreme heat.

Sturdy Shoes

Having sturdy, closed-toe shoes is essential for protecting your feet during a wildfire evacuation or if you need to navigate through debris. Opt for shoes made from fire-resistant materials, such as leather or heavy-duty rubber. Ensure the shoes provide proper support and have non-slip soles to prevent falls and injuries on uneven terrain.

What Emergency Supplies Should I Have On Hand In Case Of A Wildfire?

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Communication Devices

Battery-Powered Radio

A battery-powered radio is an essential communication device during a wildfire emergency. It allows you to stay informed about evacuation orders, weather conditions, and any updates from local authorities. Make sure to have extra batteries on hand to ensure continuous operation.

Cell Phone with Chargers

Keeping your cell phone charged is crucial during a wildfire emergency. It allows you to make emergency calls, receive emergency alerts, and stay in touch with loved ones. Invest in a portable charger or have an extra battery pack to ensure your phone remains powered.


A whistle is a simple yet effective tool for communication and alerting rescuers in case of an emergency. Keep a whistle in your emergency kit so that you can easily attract attention if you get separated from your group or need assistance.

Fire Safety Equipment

Fire Extinguisher

Having a fire extinguisher readily available can be a lifesaver during a wildfire. Opt for a multi-purpose fire extinguisher that is rated for extinguishing Class A, B, and C fires. Familiarize yourself with its proper usage, and ensure it is regularly inspected and maintained.

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Dry Chemicals (ABC) or Carbon Dioxide (CO2) Fire Extinguisher

Dry chemicals (ABC) or carbon dioxide (CO2) fire extinguishers are specifically designed for fighting electrical fires or fires caused by flammable liquids. Keep one of these extinguishers in a easily accessible location, such as your kitchen or garage, to swiftly respond to any fire emergencies.

What Emergency Supplies Should I Have On Hand In Case Of A Wildfire?

First Aid Kit


In any emergency situation, minor injuries are bound to occur. Having an assortment of bandages in your first aid kit is essential for treating cuts, scrapes, and blisters. Include adhesive bandages of various sizes, gauze pads, and adhesive tape.

Antiseptic Solution

To prevent infections, including an antiseptic solution or wipes in your first aid kit is crucial. These solutions can be used to clean wounds and reduce the risk of bacteria entering the body.


If you or a family member requires regular medications, make sure to include an ample supply in your emergency kit. Ensure these medications are stored properly and regularly check the expiration dates. It is also advisable to have over-the-counter pain relievers, antihistamines, and any other medicines specific to your family’s needs.

First Aid Manual

Even with a fully stocked first aid kit, knowing how to properly use the supplies and treat injuries is essential. Include a first aid manual that provides step-by-step instructions on how to handle common emergency situations. Review the manual periodically to refresh your knowledge and ensure you are prepared for any scenario.

Tools and Equipment


During and after a wildfire, having a shovel can be immensely useful for various purposes. It can be used to create firebreaks, dig trenches to redirect water, clear debris, and assist in building temporary shelters if needed.


An axe is a versatile tool that can help you clear obstacles, chop wood for fire, and assist in emergency repairs. Choose a sturdy axe with a comfortable grip for ease of use.


Having a handsaw in your emergency kit can prove invaluable for cutting through fallen branches, debris, or damaged structures. Opt for a compact and lightweight handsaw that is easy to carry and maneuver.

Bolt Cutters

Including a pair of bolt cutters in your emergency kit can enable you to quickly cut through padlocks, chains, or fences if necessary. These tools can aid in accessing or creating escape routes during a wildfire emergency.

What Emergency Supplies Should I Have On Hand In Case Of A Wildfire?

Clothing and Personal Items

Extra Clothing

Having spare clothing in your emergency kit is crucial, as it allows you to change into clean garments in case your clothing becomes soiled or damaged. Pack extra sets of undergarments, socks, long-sleeved shirts, and pants appropriate for the prevailing weather conditions.

Blankets and Sleeping Bags

In the event of an evacuation or if stranded outdoors, having blankets or sleeping bags can provide comfort and warmth. Pack lightweight, compact blankets or sleeping bags that can be easily carried or stored in your emergency backpack.


A reliable flashlight is essential for navigating in low-light or dark conditions during a wildfire emergency. Choose LED flashlights that are durable, provide a long battery life, and have adjustable brightness settings. Make sure to include extra batteries in your emergency kit as well.

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Aside from having extra batteries for flashlights, it is also important to have spare batteries for other essential electronic devices, such as radios or cell phones. Check the battery types required for your devices and ensure you have an adequate supply.

Pet Supplies

Pet Food

If you have pets, it is crucial to plan for their needs as well. Include an ample supply of pet food in your emergency kit, taking into account their dietary requirements and any special needs they may have.


Just like humans, pets require access to clean water during an emergency. Pack enough water for your pets to sustain them for at least three days, and consider having a portable water filtration system for extended durations.

Leash and Collar

For the safety of your pets, always keep them on a leash or in a carrier during a wildfire emergency. Pack a sturdy leash and a secure collar or harness that fits properly to prevent accidental escapes.

Carrier or Crate

If you need to evacuate with your pets, having a carrier or crate for each animal is essential for their safety and security. Choose carriers that are spacious enough for your pet to stand, turn around, and lie down comfortably.

What Emergency Supplies Should I Have On Hand In Case Of A Wildfire?

Important Documents and Cash

Identification Documents

In an emergency, having proper identification documents readily available is vital. Pack important documents such as driver’s licenses, passports, birth certificates, and Social Security cards in a waterproof bag or container.

Insurance Policies

Having copies of your insurance policies is crucial for quick reference and assistance after a wildfire. Include copies of home, auto, and any other insurance policies you may have in your emergency kit.

Cash and Credit Cards

During a wildfire emergency, access to ATMs or electronic payment systems may become limited. It is essential to have some cash on hand in small denominations to cover immediate expenses. Additionally, ensure your credit cards are easily accessible and you have contact information for your financial institutions in case of any issues.

Evacuation Supplies

Emergency Backpack or Bag

Having a designated emergency backpack or bag ensures that you can quickly and efficiently gather your essential items in case of an evacuation. Keep this bag in a readily accessible location and check its contents regularly to ensure everything is up to date.


Include relevant maps in your emergency kit, especially if you live or frequently visit areas prone to wildfires. These maps can help you identify evacuation routes, safe areas, and nearby resources such as medical facilities or shelters.


A whistle can be particularly useful during an evacuation when individuals may become separated from their group. Having a whistle can help attract attention, facilitate communication, and aid in reunification efforts.


During an evacuation, having some cash on hand can prove beneficial in unforeseen circumstances such as power outages or limited access to banking facilities. Ensure to include small bills and coins in your emergency kit.

Small Comfort Items

In times of stress and uncertainty, small comfort items can provide solace. Consider packing items such as a favorite book, playing cards, or photographs to provide emotional support during an evacuation. It is important to keep these items lightweight and compact, ensuring they do not impede your ability to carry essential supplies.

In conclusion, being prepared for a wildfire emergency requires a comprehensive approach. By gathering essential items for survival, protective gear, communication devices, fire safety equipment, first aid supplies, tools and equipment, clothing and personal items, pet supplies, important documents and cash, and evacuation supplies, you can increase your chances of staying safe during a wildfire event. Remember to regularly check and maintain your emergency supplies, conduct drills with your household members, and familiarize yourself with local emergency response protocols. Stay proactive, stay informed, and stay safe.

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