Office of Emergency Management

Fairfax County, Virginia

CONTACT INFORMATION: Open during regular business hours 8 a.m. - 4:30p.m., Monday - Friday

4890 Alliance Drive, Suite 2200, Fairfax, VA 22030

Seamus Mooney,

Make A Kit

Any emergency is easier to handle when you have prepared ahead of time.  Put together an emergency kit with important items to keep at home, and a go bag with items you will need to take with you if you evacuate.  Think about what you and your family would need in a disaster.  You can make kits for your home, car or workplace.  Emergencies can happen anywhere.

When severe weather is predicted, make sure your car has a full tank of gas.  You don't want to wait in line for gas if you are told to evacuate.  Some storms may also knock out electricity, causing gas stations to close.

Think about these items for you go bag:

  • Battery power radio and extra batteries
  • Flashlight with extra batteries
  • Lightweight blankets
  • Emergency information, including insurance policies
  • A list of medications and correct dosage, doctor's names
  • Personal items such as toothbrushes, soap, extra glasses, etc.
  • Whistle
  • First aid kit
  • Change of clothing
  • Non-perishable snacks
  • Books, cards or magazines to pass the time

Individual Kits

What kinds of things can members of your household not to be without for 72 hours?  Here are some examples of things that can create unique needs for your family:

  • Infants and young children
  • Prescription medication (keep a three day supply with you) *Make sure you update your go bag when your medications change.
    • Empty pill bottle(s) or a list of current medications
    • Your doctor's phone number
    • Health-related supplies (for example, diabetics need insulin syringes, alcohol wipes, and glucometer supplies)
    • Assistive devices (glasses, canes, etc.)

Kits for families

When you are in a hurry, it is easy to overlook small and important items.  Common items like diapers and pet food might not be easy to find right after an emergency or a disaster.  Trying new brands of food or formula, or not have a comfort item, can make disasters more stressful for both children and pets.

Talk to your kids about what to do in a fire, a medical emergency, or a disaster.  Make sure they know where emergency supplies are kept, how (and when) to call 911, and who to call if they can't reach you in an emergency or disaster.

Access and Functional Needs Kits

People with Access and Functional Needs are more affected by disaster than others in the community.  Accessible services might not be available.  Hazards like wildfire, floods, and hurricanes can lead to evacuations.  If you have a disability and you live in an area where these things can happen, make sure you have an evacuation plan:

  • Make sure you are signed up for any emergency notification systems your community offers.  Some notification systems will only call landline phones.  If you use a cell phone, you may have to sign up separately.
  • Paratransit services may not be available once an emergency or disaster occurs.  Talk to your paratransit provider now to find out what services they can provide when evacuation is ordered.
  • If paratransit services aren't available, arrange for someone else to pick you up if an evacuation is ordered.  Make sure they will come for you UNLESS you tell them not to.  That way there will not be any confusion when the time comes.  If you can't evacuate, call 911 to let them know of your location.
  • Talk to you local Red Cross chapter or other organizations who provide emergency sheltering in your community.  Make sure that your needs can be met in an emergency shelter.  Think about accessible entrances and bathrooms.  What methods of communicating with shelter staff, medical services or assistive devices will you need?  If you have a service animal, talk to them about what they can provide for the animal.  Find out what you need to bring with you.  Make sure you have batteries or a charger for any assistive devices in your emergency kit.

Pet Kits

A disaster may happen while you are away from home.  Your neighborhood may be evacuated, or you could be trapped somewhere else and unable to get home.  Consider asking a trusted neighbor to check on your pets if you can't get home because of a disaster or emergency.  You may also ask them to take your pets with them if an evacuation is ordered while you are not home.  Make sure they are comfortable with your pet, and that they know where to find leashes and other supplies:

  • Pet food and water
  • Collar with ID tags
  • Pet medication(s)
  • Pet carriers and leashes
  • Medical records from vet
  • Photos of your pet
  • Microchip information