Stocking the Home for Emergencies

Storms, fires, riots, earthquakes and gas shortages, to name a few, are conditions that can force you to stay in the home. If you live in a sound structure that is not in the path of rolling flames, this may not be so bad… unless you are hungry, cold, and dehydrated with no way to change that.

When it comes to planning for a basic “stuck at home” emergency, we are looking at a situation that should be over within three weeks, usually shorter. So, we plan for four weeks, or a month. This gives a buffer zone if the emergency lasts longer than expected and provides “extras” for unforeseen conditions, such as having a house guest when the emergency arises.

This may sound hard or expensive, but it really isn’t that bad. For this article, we will base the information on a family of four that has a baby. Your situation may need more or fewer supplies, and will definitely need different “specific” supplies, as every home and every person has different needs.


Bottled WaterThe first concern is water. Not much else matters when you are dehydrated, and that can happen fast. On average, you should be using one gallon per day, per person. This includes drinking, bathing, and cooking. So, for this family, you need four gallons a day, 28 gallons a week, and 112 gallons a month. The easiest method of storing and using water is in water bottles. A 24 pack of bottles is just over three gallons. With one flat per person, there is 12 gallons of water that is easy to store under beds, in closets, and cabinets. That leaves this family with the need for another 100 gallons. The most cost effective way and safest way to store that much water would be in 50 or 55 gallon barrels. With two of those, you are at or above the needed 112 gallons. By starting with the water, one flat per person, you have a fast and easy way to get three days’ worth of water for each family member that can be built upon as time permits.

Safe Shelter

After water, comes security and shelter. You need to be able to provide safe heat or keep cool if the power goes out. This is very dependent on your location and your home design. For cold days, here in Phoenix, blankets and warm clothes are more than enough. Hot days, on the other hand, need a bit more. I have solar powered swamp coolers and burlap that can be soaked and placed over windows to help beat the heat. Of course, that means more water stored to use those options. The good news though is that they don’t need potable water. As for security, the family needs ways to defend from attackers, the ability to strengthen doors and windows, and warning systems that work if the power is out, such as dogs.


Now comes food. Just like water, you can start with small parts to build upon the whole. When you go shopping, buy a few extra cans of stuff you normally eat. If we base food needs on 2,000 calories per day, per person, we are looking at 8,000 calories a day, 56,000 calories a week, and 224,000 calories a month. Unlike water, you can easily go lower on the food, but why be hungry for a lack of planning. Ideally, you want foods that uses little to no water, can be cooked easily or eaten cold, and are foods you normally eat. Dry beans and rice go a long way, but also use a fair amount of water and are harder to cook if the stove isn’t working during an emergency. Canned foods can be placed right on top of a grill with the lid open. “Just add water” foods aren’t bad, so long as they don’t use much water. You can also stock protein bars, MREs (eating MRE’s for more than a few days at a time is not good for you or your ability to….poop…), and other such items that need no preparation.

By adding a few extras each shopping trip, a few dollars here and there, you can have a month’s supply of emergency rations in no time and ride out a local disaster in style, relieving the burden of emergency workers and making sure your family is not one of the statistics, but rather, the survivors.

Disclaimer: The content in this article is the opinion of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the policies or opinions of US Patriot Tactical.

Seth Belt

Seth grew up in Southern Arizona before joining the U.S. Navy. While serving in the Navy, Seth was an anti-narcotics operator and an anti-submarine operator for 5 years. He was lucky enough to travel to many of the Central and South American countries, as well as visiting many South East Asian nations and islands. One of Seth’s greatest joys from his time in the Navy was teaching new Sailors firearms education and safety. After leaving the Navy in 2010, Seth returned to Arizona and had a rough time learning how to be a civilian again, often working jobs that could barely pay the bills. After going to school, Seth became an Emergency Medical Technician in the Phoenix Valley, where he now lives with his wife and son.His areas of knowledge cover military, firearms, and emergency medicine.
Seth Belt

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *