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Things you can do today to get your household ready

1. Make a plan

A household emergency plan will help protect what matters most - you, your loved ones and your pets. It includes knowing the best way to leave your home in an emergency, where to meet and how to contact one another if separated.

Make your emergency plan: 
  1. List the household members, their contact numbers and any specific needs and requirements or needs. You can find a Household Emergency Plan template here.
  2. Decide where you will meet following an emergency situation. List the name and contact details for someone outside the area who you can all check in with if you can't meet up.
  3. Plan for the impacts of a disaster including loss of power, communication, isolation and what that might mean for you and your whānau.
  4. Fix items of furniture like shelves, bookcases or TV stands to the wall to prevent them from falling over during an earthquake. For useful tips about how to reduce the risk around your home check out EQC's Fix, Fasten, Don't Forget resources. 
  5. List the ways you can get reliable information during a response.
  6. Detail how to turn off water, electricity and gas if required.

Head to to create and tailor your household emergency plan online today.

2. Gather supplies

Whether you’re just starting out or you’re a preparedness pro, gathering your emergency supplies is easy. A good rule of thumb is to have supplies for about 3 days. You’ll be surprised at how much you already have.

Many emergency or disaster situations could leave you and your loved ones stranded at home for days. Keep a supply of the following items in your house:

  • Clean drinking water.
  • Blankets or sleeping bags.
  • First aid kit.
  • Non-perishable (canned or dried) food.
  • Torch and radio.

  • Fire extinguisher.
  • Face and dust masks.
  • Hand sanitiser.
  • Can opener.
  • Emergency toilet provisions.
  • Wind and waterproof clothing, strong outdoor shoes and sunhat.
  • Primus or gas barbeque to cook on.

  • Medication.
  • Pet supplies.
  • Food, formula and drinks for babies and small children.


You can find a Household Emergency Checklist here.

3. Get Connected

In an emergency or disaster situation, you'll need to know how to get information and how to connect with people around you in your community. Now is a good time to connect so you'll be ready if a disaster situation occurs. 

1. Connect with your local Civil Defence

  • Follow Civil Defence on Facebook, Twitter and your local council website. 
  • Learn what radio stations Civil Defence will broadcast through in your area in a disaster situation. 
  • You can find the websites, social media channels and radio stations that Civil Defence will use in your local area by going to the homepage of this website and clicking on the district that you live in.

2. Connect with your neighbours

  • Share contact details with your neighbours so you can contact one another if an emergency occurs.
  • Tell your neighbours about your emergency plan and ask about their plans.
  • Have a chat about some of the hazards and risks in the area. They may have some fantastic local knowledge gained from previous experiences with floods, fires, earthquakes or storms.
  • Find out who amongst your neighbours may be able to help you or may need your help in a disaster.

3. Connect with your community

  • Get involved with the local community groups or volunteering opportunities in your local area.  The better connected a community is, the better a community can respond to, and recover from, any type of emergency.  
  • Share information and updates about incoming weather or Civil Defence alert with your family, friends networks.
  • Join a local online community through sites like Facebook or Twitter. If one doesn't exist for your area, consider creating one.
  • Contact Neighbourhood Support to find out if a network exists in your neighbourhood.
  • Check out the Community ready section for more information.

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