13 Power Outage Essentials to Prepare for Fire Season

We pulled together a checklist of basic emergency items to keep on hand.
Be prepared for emergency with these items
Illustration from iStock/Vladwel

In October nearly all Marin residents and some 2.5 million people around the Bay Area were left in the dark as PG&E started implementing power outages to deenergize lines and mitigate fire damage. The event was largely a mess but brought to light how vulnerable many of us were without power. Stock up on these basic items to make a future emergency less jarring. An extended printable version is available at FEMA.

1) Water: one gallon of water per person per day for at least three days, for drinking and sanitation

2) Food: at least a three-day supply of nonperishable food

3) Battery-powered or hand-crank radio and a NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert

4) Flashlight

5) First aid kit

6) Dust mask to help filter contaminated air, and plastic sheeting and duct tape to seal your home for a shelter-in-place

7) Moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties for personal sanitation

8) Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities

9) Manual can opener for food

10) Local maps

11) Cellphone with chargers and a backup battery

12) Extra batteries

13) Whistle to signal for help

Photo courtesy of iStock: Vladwel.


Kasia Powlowska

Kasia Pawlowska loves words. A native of Poland, Kasia moved to the States when she was seven. The San Francisco State University creative writing graduate went on to write for publications like the San Francisco Bay Guardian and KQED Arts among others prior to joining the Marin Magazine staff. Topics Kasia has covered include traveltrendsmushroom hunting, an award-winning series on social media addiction, and loads of other random things. When she’s not busy blogging or researching and writing articles, she’s either at home writing postcards and reading or going to shows. Recently, Kasia has been trying to branch out and diversify, ie: use different emojis. Her quest for the perfect chip is a never-ending endeavor.

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